Halloween is an exciting holiday and it's surely not just for kids. Kids running through the streets all full of smiles hoping for their favorite candy at every doorstep. There are also the groups of parents strolling the streets trying to keep count of the children running from house to house. There are crazy and cute costumes in every direction. For some this is the best holiday of the year as it allows them to create the most epic of haunted houses or to simply dress up and be someone or something different for the night.
Now maybe you don't have kids or the kids are older and have outgrown the trick or treating part but that doesn't mean you have to be done with Halloween. It only comes around once a year so why not make the most of it and have a little fun. Here are some alternative ideas on how to spend your Halloween evening if you're not planning on trick or treating.
- Host a costume party. You can make this an all age party if you have kids at home. Decorate your house with a fun Halloween theme and prepare some spooky snacks. You can make it like a potluck and ask others to bring a dish for the party. Have a costume contest and some simple prizes for the winner(s). The prize doesn't have to be anything over the top. For the adults a bottle of wine or a gift card to a local coffee shop is enough. For the kids it could be a goodie bag of candy or a gift card to a local place such as a bowling alley, clothing store, or a video game store (it should be age and/or gender specific). Once the guests start to arrive, throw on some music and let the party begin!
- If throwing a party at your house doesn't sound appealing, you could also organize a block party. Talk with your neighbors and recruit people to help organize it. If the weather permits, bring out the barbecue and get the burgers and hotdogs cooking. If it's a good size party you may need a couple people tending to the barbecue. Have everyone bring their own main dish (hamburgers or hotdogs for example) and then ask everyone to bring a dish to share. Spooky cupcakes or a bubbling brew of punch (a few pieces of dry ice will give your punch the foggy effect). There is a good chance you'll have trick or treaters making their way through your block so do have candy ready too.
- It seems that every neighborhood has that one house all the kids want to go trick or treating at. It's the super scary house, the most decorated themed house or just something unique like the most awesome pumpkin carvings or the best candy :) Really, that could be your house. For example you could turn your garage into a mini haunted house or another fun theme. Have your family members dress up to match the theme and act out parts. Someone could be a zombie popping out of a dark place to give a little fright. Or you could rig up some props to have a ghost appear to be floating across the floor. If really scary be sure to let the parents of little children know as you don't want the little ones going home frightened and having nightmares. Most of all have fun, get in the spirit and create something memorable.
- If parties and decorating isn't your cup of witches brew, you could take a trip to a local haunted house. It's a fun alternative that doesn't require much planning or cleaning up when it's over. If you have little children, do make sure they are old enough to handle to scary parts before you go in. There are some very scary haunted houses and while getting a little scared is part of the excitement you want everyone to leave having had fun, not tears.
- There are other alternatives that are less scary if you desire. Check your local events for a festival in the area. There are many community organizations that will organize small events. It might be a craft market with food and drinks or even a local band that will play. These types of local events often have a little something for all ages and can be fun for the whole family.
- Get the family together and do something crafty together like carving pumpkins or making Halloween decorations with the little ones. A tissue and a ball of paper can make for a fun ghost craft if you get creative. Not the crafty type? No worries how about making some cupcakes or cookies that you can decorate. It doesn't have to be difficult; just a box of cake mix and get the whole family involved. Let the kids mix the cake batter and help decorate. Surely everyone will enjoy the treats when they are all done.
- Something that is always fun to do on Halloween is just seeing all the costumes. So grab a bag or two of candy and hand out candy to all of the trick or treaters. You can also take it a step further and dress up yourself. Seriously it's just as fun for a trick or treater to be greeted by Frankenstein or, "No don't look at her...it's Medusa!" We should note that real snakes are not necessary for Medusa's hair and that the rubber ones will be fine. Again just have some fun with it.
- Ok, so maybe we haven't found the right alternative for you yet. Yes, you know who you are, the house with the lights out. Sorry, there is a good chance any kid looking to fill their bags with candy is going to ring the doorbell regardless if lights are on or off. If you're looking to avoid this situation all together you could always head out for some dinner and a movie. You could even dress up in costume to add some spirit to the night.
Whatever you choose to do on Halloween, be sure to have some fun and be safe. Happy Halloween from The All Things Group!