Weekend How-To: Throw A Halloween Party

Halloween is almost here! Booyah! It’s the perfect time to gather your friends and family to eat, drink, and be scary. Everyone loves a spooktacular Halloween party, but sadly, not everyone is dying to host one. So it’s the perfect time to volunteer. Don’t be afraid. It’s not that hard. Once you’ve answered the question, “To theme or not to theme?” the rest of the devilish details aren’t so grave after all. And you can always farm out a lot of the food duty. Still scared? Get a grip. Here are some super-easy steps to help get the spooky party started. Read on…

For The Kiddos


A little creativity and a whole lot of sugar is all it really takes to make your Halloween party the talk of the playground. Rest assured, the little goblins and ghouls will have a fiendishly good time if you follow the steps below.

Step 1: Consider The Ages

For starters, be aware of the ages of all partygoers to ensure your shindig isn’t too scary—or boring.

Step 2: When Will It End?

Notify parents well ahead of time when the party will end—the exact time the partygoers should go. Sugar-buzzed kids who overstay their welcome can be a bit batty to deal with. So if you want them to get out! once the party is over, be firm about the pick-up time.

Step 3: To Theme Or Not To Theme?

Depending on the ages of the kids, you’ll definitely need to keep this question in mind. Will your partygoers prefer a simple pumpkin-carving party with games, goodies, and crafts? Or will they want to be scared silly with ghosts, zombies, and witches? Your own kids can help you decide what their friends like best. Also, will this be a costume party? If so, be sure all guests are aware of the theme. No kid wants to be the only one who shows up in a costume OR the only one who doesn’t.

Step 4: Cast A Spell On Your Home

Get your guests’ attention right away. Once you’ve decided upon your theme, you can decorate accordingly with fabulous fall-themed accents or spooky spiders and skeletons. But be sure they get noticed as soon as your guests walk through the door. And you should decorate every room where the little monsters may roam. There’s no need to go crazy, just hints here-and-there of harvest-time fun or Halloween horror will suffice. And if you don’t have a single crafty bone in your body, check out www.sheknows.com to learn how to transform things you already have around the house into Halloween décor. Or go to your local craft and costume stores where there will be plenty of spooktacular—but pricier—stuff to buy.

Step 5: Music Little Monsters Will Love

A Halloween party is always more fun with some spirited music. Consider buying a CD with some fun, eerie tunes or compile the party playlist yourself from an online store or music app. Playing Monster Mash and Thriller the whole time will definitely kill the party mood—and your eardrums—so be sure to mix it up.

Step 6: Make Spooktacular Munchies

You can get as spooky as you want with the snacks, regardless of the kids’ ages, because there’s nothing scary about a spider cupcake or a zombie cookie, right? So have fun with the many clever ideas out there. And if think-of-it-yourself isn’t your thing, check out www.pinterest.com for a slew of adorable, devilish delights. Or farm out the food duty and just focus on the fun stuff.

Step 7: Play Ghoulish Games

Here are some great ideas to make guests of all ages giggle and have a great time. These games can be played indoors or out.

Witch, Witch, Ghost! – This Halloween equivalent of Duck, Duck, Goose! is always a fun party favorite.

Hide And Shriek – You know what to do. But when a person is found, they must shriek really loud. The first one “caught” is IT for the next round.

Mummy Wrap Relay – Divide your guests into pairs. One person wraps the other person in toilet paper. The “mummy” then has to walk to the other side of the room and return without ripping the paper. Repeat for the other partner. The winning pair gets a prize or a treat.

Pass The Pumpkin – Put on Monster Mash or Thriller and have the guests pass a small pumpkin around the circle until the music stops. The person holding the pumpkin once the music has stopped must sit in the middle of the circle. Repeat until you have one remaining winner.

Step 8: Keep Your Cool

There will be plenty of noise and shenanigans going on in and outside of your home-sweet-normally-quiet-home. What did you expect? It’s a party! So take a deep breath and join in the merry mayhem with your guests—as long as everyone is safe and non-destructive. And consider forewarning nearby neighbors of the upcoming event. Or better yet, invite them to stop over (so they don’t call the cops).

For The Grown-Ups


Repeat steps 3 – 7 and just add alcohol. Seriously. All of the above ideas can easily be ramped up into adult-friendly drinking games. And since there are no age concerns at your party, anything scary goes for the decorations—fog machines, candles, bloody handprints, sticky spider webs, motion-activated zombies, a skeleton in the bathtub, a dummy standing behind a translucent shower curtain, a chopped off plastic head in the refrigerator. Okay, you get the idea. It’s all good for a scream. And consider having a costume contest so your guests can get super-creative and competitive with their garb. Sounds like a blast, right? If you still want some extra fun ideas to help you host the happiest Halloween party ever, definitely check these out:

Happy Halloween!