1. Classroom parties.
Classroom parties aren’t as much fun as they used to be. I remember going to school in costume and wearing it all day long. We would take turns walking around other classrooms to show our costumes.
Today, costume wearing is limited to the party only. Often treats need to be store-bought and / or allergies for students need to be addressed. Below are a few things you might do at your party, depending on the time allowed.
- Costume contest
- Sharing treats
- Traditional games
- Halloween-themed carnival
See what your classroom / school does to allow students to celebrate the holiday. Be sure to follow the school’s recommendations.
2. Organization parties.
Organizations and churches may have a party so that the kids can have fun while being safe. They are usually in a defined area with many adults to act as supervisors. In addition to the ideas above, organization parties may also:
- Go to different areas for treats
- Receive items other than food for treats
- Get awards for winning games, best art/craft, best costumes, etc.
- Feature an activity (like roller skating) in place of traditional activities
See if an organization you belong to is planning a Halloween bash. If not, check out other organizations in your area and plan a proposal for your organization next year.
3. Outdoor parties.
Outdoor parties may stick to the above ideas, or be focused around being outdoors. Some activities might include:
- Corn maze
- Haunted trail
- Ghost hunt
Go to an outdoor party or event. See what they do. Is this something you would like to help with next year or even make your own?
4. Office parties.
Office parties are often very limited on time. Sharing treats with people who wander in your area or dressing up tends to be the limit. What does your office / business / job do for the holiday? What suggestions can you make to improve it?
5. Adult parties.
Adult parties are vastly different from kid parties. Alcohol is the most obvious difference. Costumes also tend to be more revealing. Attend an adult party. How can you make it better?
6. Costume parties.
Costume parties can come in the form of a parade or in a single location. In addition, costumes may be judged by the individual, group or even theme. Often, a costume contest is part of a party. When the party is a costume party, the costumes are the main focus. Socializing with each other is also important. Games may or may not be played. Attend or talk to someone who has attended a costume party. Again, is this something you might want to host yourself?
Making it better
7. Plan for safety.
When you plan for a party, safety should always be your number one concern. Halloween brings in additional challenges such as darkness, candlelight and other items that make it more difficult to be safe. Keep this in mind as you plan.
If you’re planning to have a theme, share it with your guests. A zombie party might have everyone dressing as zombies, with a contest to see who does the best make-up, clothing, etc. Wine and painting parties are popular . . . why not paint a local haunted location or graveyard with a contest for the best painting? In addition to contests, your invitations, decor, food and activity choices need to revolve around the theme. Pick a theme and start brainstorming with the help of the Enrichment Project’s Halloween badge set.
9. Games and activities.
Games can be active or passive. While theme holds your event together, your audience is even more important. Younger children are more willing to play, uncaring if they make fools of themselves. If you want to include games in your party, talk to a few participants beforehand to make sure they will be willing to try the games.
Crafts are likely to go over with younger participants. You’ll need something “artsy” for older kids and adults . . . though chances are they would prefer to socialize.
You may just want to play random scary sounds or have an entire soundtrack of holiday music. For people not fully engaged with games and activities, music allows them to still enjoy themselves. Find appropriate music to add to your party. You might even do Halloween karaoke for a fun time.
Pull out those recipes for a fun Halloween buffet. Create special drinks for your guests. You may want to serve traditional foods, but just change them up a little like baking biscuits to look like fingers. Even if you’re having a short party, you’ll want at least something to drink. Plan refreshments to fit your theme or do a fun Halloween spread.
Be sure your decor works with your theme. Bright jack-o-lanterns won’t work for the zombie theme. You can purchase items or make your own. Be sure to check with your attendees to see if anyone has something to add to your decor or wants to help you prepare.
13. Something to remember you by.
Favors give your guests something to remember your party. This might be a treat or specially crafted item to reflect your theme. Candy cones can be decorated like a witch’s hat. Photos of costumed friends can be shared on the cloud. What other favors might fit your theme?
Sites to Explore