Tips on Hosting a Halloween Party

Plan ahead for a successful party.

Halloween is probably the most fun party to plan.  The possibilities are endless!   Planning ahead is key for the success of any party.  Iron out the details well in advance and you will be able to host and enjoy your party too.  Here are some things to consider when planning your party:  

Guest List
Create your guest list.  This will help set the tone of your party.  Who will be attending, young children, teens, adults or a mixture of everyone? When families are involved, it’s a smart idea to keep things more festive than scary for your younger guests. If the décor and activities are too frightening for the little ones, that’s not fun for anyone.

Invitations
It’s generally recommended to send out invitations 2 to 4 weeks ahead of the party date.   Invitations set the tone for your event so be specific about details.  Include the date, party start and end times and RSVP information.  Let your guests know if costumes are required or welcome, if children are included, if they should bring a dish to pass, what activities are planned, etc.  That way neither you or your guests will be surprised or uncomfortable.

Festive or spooky - it's ok to go over the top with Halloween decor!

Ambiance
It’s ok to go over the top with Halloween décor!  Dim the lights to set the mood.  Use candles everywhere.  If candles make you nervous, use the flameless candles for safety.  Place cobwebs in doorways and corners.  If you feel overwhelmed by all the spooky choices, keep it simple by repeating a theme – pumpkins/jack-o-lanterns, spiders, bats or monsters are some great ideas.  Want to go all out?  Include a fog machine in larger areas.  Don’t forget to make a scary music playlist! 

Festive Snacks
In addition to Halloween sweets make sure there are plenty of savory snacks available.  Hollow out a small pumpkin to place veggie dip in and arrange the veggies around it.  Make spider deviled eggs by topping the eggs with a black olive cut in half for the body and 8 slices for the legs. Wrap hotdogs in strips of canned pizza dough and bake to make “mummy dogs”.  And for the main beverage, serve a blood-red or gross-green punch out of a witch’s cauldron.  With a little creativity you can turn most foods into something festive.

A seasonal craft like decorating pumpkins is a great party activity.

Activities
It’s a good idea to plan a couple of activities to keep guests entertained.  Play party games, make a seasonal craft, have a costume contest or watch a classic Halloween movie.  Make sure there are age appropriate activities for all.  Activities help guests interact with one another and have more fun.  With Halloween the possibilities are endless.  

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