Halloween isn’t always an icky, spooky time. For some, a Halloween party is a time of family bonding and happy memories. Save yourself and your family the nightmare of a boring party. Put on a Halloween extravaganza that your friends and their families will enjoy. Skip the spooky and focus on family togetherness.
It’s easy to choose groups for party activities. Invite friends to come as family groups. If you need exact numbers for certain games, such as pumpkin tossing, you can assign single friends or couples to certain small families to even the numbers out. You may have to break large families into smaller groups, such as girls and boys, to equal the sizes of small families.
Use holiday specific materials for traditional family games. Wrap legs together, for a three-legged race, with white gauze that you can call “mummy wrapping.” Have families race on broomsticks or dressed as ghosts with white sheets, with an unmasked leader in the front to avoid unnecessary spills. Have an obstacle course through a graveyard in your backyard or send them on a trick or treat scavenger hunt, with a list of candy types or brands.
Encourage families to work together to create crafts that reflect them and the holiday. Using gingerbread and some candy they have gathered, families can create a haunted house. Have them paint gourds or pumpkins to decorate their own homes.
In addition to active games, you can also host competitions for family groups. In the invitation, ask families to put together the best coordinating costumes, such as several characters from the same movie. For an even bigger challenge, ask them to come in their street clothes. When they arrive, let them choose from a trunk or boxful of dress-up clothes, old outfits and uniforms, cardboard boxes, tape, markers and other items. Each team should have 20 to 30 minutes to put together a costume ensemble.
Toss out the old idea of candy for prizes and make every parent happier. If you want an edible prize, stick with apples, pumpkin pies and other seasonal snacks. For a family prize, you can purchase a gift certificate to a local farm for pumpkins or the next holiday’s turkey. Give out tickets to amusement parks, zoos and museums with Halloween presentations.
- halloween image by L. Shat from Fotolia.com