The Headless Horseman’s Handy tips for a Happy Halloween Party

Halloween is a fantastic time of year for people of any age; for the younger kids it’s a great time to dress up and as they get older it becomes a festival of free sweets and staying up past bedtime. Even as you become an adult it’s still a great excuse to get together and dress up, albeit in a somewhat different fashion. Halloween is the perfect time to throw a party for children or for old friends you haven’t seen in a while. If you’re looking to throw a real wild Halloween party, then inviting people you see every day can make for an even better party. So, young or old, Halloween is the perfect excuse to dress up and have a good time. And it doesn’t need to cost the earth to throw a great Halloween party for children, adults or both. If you’re struggling for ideas for your Halloween party, then you might find this list useful…These are a few of our favourite Halloween party ideas that should help you have a smashingly spooky shindig: 1.      Raising the Dead – Halloween is a historically a Pagan tradition with mystical roots and spooky ceremonies. Often during this time of year people feel the need to bring back these traditions or delve into the mystical arts and ‘play’ with that which they normally would not. As fun as it may seem to try to raise or contact the dead there are forces at play that we cannot hope to fully understand. The likelihood is that if you try nothing will happen but if for whatever reason it does, are you prepared to deal with the consequences? If the answer is no, or even yes, please do not mess with the occult and leave the spirits, ghouls and spectres where they belong. We’d recommend leaving this stuff alone, even if it does initially seem like a good idea for your Halloween party. 2.      Haunting your House (or whatever the Halloween equivalent of “Deck the Halls” is) – Even if you aren’t hosting your own Halloween Party, you’re still bound to have a visit from trick-or-treaters both young and old. It’s only fair that you give them a good show – if only to stop your house being egged. Every haunted house needs spider’s webs and that’s just for starters. If you really want to scare any visitors you’re going to need a lot more; hanging fake skeletons outside the house and decorating the place with jack-o-lanterns is another great way of bringing gore to your door. 3.      A good tip is that less is more - If you want your Halloween party (or decorations) to be scary, then you’ll get more fear from the unknown and the hidden. Scattered various scary items around the party venue and make them leap out at guests wherever possible – a skeleton on the back of a door (for example) will work a treat. Fill a bucket with fake rubber spiders and proper it up above a door for a hilariously scary surprise for an unsuspecting guest or guests. Monsters in cupboards, Ghouls in the bathroom, Witches in the fridge, the only limit is your imagination. Hallwoeen Sweets   4.      A Mysterious Knock at the Door – As we’ve already said, a Halloween party is a great excuse to get dressed up. If you’re throwing a party at this time of year, it’s almost a given that you make it a fancy dress party. Let your friends know in the party invite and give them the freedom to pick their own costumes and you’ll certainly get some interesting people turn up at your door. It’s really fun to get into character and make pretend for a while. If you’re planning to be with other people, theme your group’s costumes and you will look all great. Mad doctors and blood-drenched nurses go well together or you can also go as opposing sides with vampires vs. slayers, there are plenty of Halloween fancy dress costumes to choose from. You can also put planning into how you will answer the door; you can make a door open “by itself” with the use of some fishing line or sting and a little ingenuity. Skeletons falling from overhead are also good but if you are using a big one, measure carefully so that nobody gets a skeleton to the face. If you have a side gate you can also wait until there is a knock at the door and then sneak behind them and announce yourself. This is sure to put a good fright into them, but make sure that any lights with sensors are off, as this will give you away. It is also good to be considerate. If you have done your costume right and are particularly horrifying, then please remember that some children may be particularly scared. While it seems like this is the point to Halloween and if anything the desired effect, it will be very difficult to console a child while dressed a 7’ werewolf. Obviously if you’re throwing a Halloween party you’ll probably know whether children are attending or not, if you aren’t sure, remember to check with invitees beforehand as to whether they’re planning to bring their little ones. 5.      Fun and Games for Little Monsters - If you decide that you are throwing a Halloween party for children then there are lots of things you can do to keep them entertained. If you are looking for games for them to play then you can always stick with classics like apple bobbing just add a spooky twist. You can also make other games by hiding prizes in bowls of eyes (peeled grapes) or bowls of ectoplasm (black or green jelly). If you’re thinking of feeding them as well it may be best to find something more substantial than sugar and sweets. They’ll probably get enough of those and be bouncing off the walls already. If you have Halloween shaped biscuit cutters then you can make spooky biscuits, or you can use them to make scary shaped sandwiches. This is very easy to do and not massively time consuming. Jam sandwiches work particularly well as it will ooze out the sides and look like blood. If it was also a birthday or if you were just looking to have a cake, you could dye the main cake a reddish pink. If you are able to make a slight dome on the top, you could get a piping bag with light pink butter cream icing and make a brain cake. By working you way up and down the cake in thick pink, wavy strands it should look like a brain. If you wanted you could make the bottom half a different colour and then add some chocolate eyes so it looks like the top of a head. iStock_000026931373XSmall If there was something else you wanted to serve, it’s good to remember that you can always use red food dye or tell children that it’s something else scarier. Sausages are giant’s fingers; broccoli is the hair of goblins, and so on and so on. It is easy enough to lay out food in Halloween shapes to add some atmosphere. 6.      Horror films for Halloween Hilarity - If you decide that you don’t want to go out amongst the witches and the demons, then you can always stay inside and watch scary films with a few friends; it’s great way of getting good and scared and spending some time with friends. When picking films it is good to remember that people find different things scary. If you pick an actually scary film make sure it is just that. If you are fearless and don’t know the meaning of scary films, I would suggest bad horror films from the past; they may not be scary, but they will be so dated and cheesy that they will at least be a good laugh. You and your friends can pick them apart and make fun of the actors; nothing is funnier than other people’s misfortune or failure. It is also a good idea to pick a series of films so that you have plenty to fill the time with. It also means that if you really get into them you can stay up all night. Those are just a few of our ideas for a hilarious horrific Halloween. If you’ve got some more you’d like to share or you’ve been to a really great Halloween party in recent years. Let us know in the comments below. For some inspiration have a look at our Halloween fancy dress board Fancy Dress Whatever you’re planning, remember Party Packs has all your Halloween Party accessories, decorations and supplies


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