1. Monster Party
Decorate your yard and house with signs of a monster. Create huge footprints from the street to the front door (some door mats are shaped like footprints and you could use them to make the monster’s path or cut the prints out of foam sheets). Set a place for him at the table with a giant place mat, a straight-sided glass vase as a drinking glass, and a barbecue fork, butcher knife, and large serving spoon for cutlery. His plate can be a large, round tray and his soup bowl, a tureen. Pipe a loud voice down from the attic or up from the basement. Have guests dress as monsters; the scariest get a prize.
2. Potluck Halloween Dinner Party
Offer prizes for the most ghoulish-looking main dish, the scariest salad, the most frightening dessert, and the most poisonous-looking drink.
3. Favourite Sleuth Party
Each guest dresses as his or her favorite mystery novel sleuth from Sherlock Holmes to Inspector Poirot, Sam Spade, or Kinsey Millhone. Other guests have to guess who each is; the person who identifies the most fictional sleuths wins a prize.
4. Day of the Dead Party
This November 1 Mexican holiday honours the cycle of life and death. It welcomes deceased ancestors for a yearly visit and uses skeleton-shaped foods, not to scare the living but to celebrate the dead. Serve a mole, a chicken stew with chocolate, bread of the dead shaped like a skeleton, and spicy hot chocolate with cinnamon for a drink.
5. Hayride Party
An increasing number of farms have gotten into the Halloween spirit by offering hayrides, cornfield mazes, pumpkin patches, even hay-bale courses for kids to ride tricycles through. Find a farm in your area that has autumn activities and have a great day with your children and their best friends.
6. Halloween Barn Dance
It’s the right time of year for bales of straw for seats, pumpkins and corn stalks for decorations, and country music for getting your feet going. Join your friends to rent a hall and hire a trio of musicians, and a caller to get the dancing started. With a caller, even beginners can twirl like pros. Serve cider, beer, and chili and have a ball.