NEW ORLEANS -- A mobile phone app based around neighborhood connections added a new feature to help parents and trick-or-treaters make the most of their night, safely.
When Amy Stelly Was raising her kids in Treme, trick-or-treating in the neighborhood was a big deal.
"That was the highlight because they got to bond with the other kids on the neighborhood and go out with their friends so it was an exciting thing for them even as teenagers," said Stelly.
One of the best ways they knew what doors to knock on was the classic signal of leaving the porch light on.
"Unfortunately for me the porch light hasn't worked for me in the past few years,” Stelly explained. “I may see one a year now, whereas when I was growing up you'd see hordes of kids going up and down the street."
Now people like Stelly are using apps like Nextdoor.com. It's a social network for neighborhoods that now allows you to mark your house as trick-or-treating friendly.
"The map allows you to put a little candy corn on your house so it indicates that you are in fact giving out treats that year," explained parent Veronica Brooks-Sigler.
Sigler thinks the map in the app takes the guessing out of trick-or-treating.
"As opposed to just wondering around,” said Sigler. “You know we have some renters and young students and not everyone's going to give out candy."
Parents think it's convenient because before you leave the house you can print out a route or just bring your phone that way you can skip the houses that are going to give you tricks instead of treats. For some parents the app can also help keep kids safe.
"I see it really is a tragedy that you can no longer send your kids out and be comfortable that they will be safe and sound going through their own neighborhood where they're growing up," said Stelly.
Stelly hopes the app will bring more trick or treaters to her doorstep.