Halloween Party Ideas, Halloween Decoration Ideas

Throw a Spooky Halloween Party

Archive for the ‘Halloween Decorations’ Category

Halloween Dance Ideas – Music, Food, Activities, and Decorations

Posted by Wendy Moyle on October 16, 2012

Try our formula for a Halloween dance that Dr. Frankenstein could appreciate: music, food and atmosphere, with a little structured fun.

Halloween Decorations for Dances
We like to set up one or more large Halloween decorations that will be seen as soon as the guests arrive and will be a focal point all evening. Consider starting with a standee. The Haunted Manson Standee, for example, at 10’ tall and 9’8” wide, will fill even a gymnasium wall but will stand only about 1’ deep. Silhouettes and Halloween backgrounds meant for hanging will take up even less floor space.

Tape down a cobblestone patterned flat paper in front of the large decoration and throw a few tissue grass mats randomly on top. Spooky trees, tombstones or other three-dimensional decorations will round out the display.

If you have the room, you could hardly go wrong with the 8’X8’ Spooky Balloon Tree, shown at right, placed in the center of the room. Put radiant LED lights for balloons in some of the silver balloons attached to the tree, and some in loose balloons that you scatter about the room.

Spooky Food for Your Dance
Fill a Halloween refreshment table with interesting finger food (insert Halloween ladyfingers joke here). Make easy, fun appetizers and drinks such as pumpkin-shaped cheese balls, dubious dips and brew-ha-ha punch by selecting from a collection of 15 recipes at Southern Living.com.

Here’s their recipe for bone-shaped crackers for dipping:
1. Stir together ¼ cup melted butter, ½ teaspoon coarsely ground pepper, and ½ teaspoon kosher salt.
2. Cut 5 (9-inch) wheat wraps with a 3-inch bone-shaped cutter (or cut bone shapes freehand). Place them on baking sheets and brush them with the butter mixture.
3. Bake the crackers at 350° for 8-10 minutes until crispy. Cool them on wire racks about 15 minutes.

Dance and More
Music doesn’t have to be all Halloween or horror-related, but do remind yourself what’s out there. Especially if you are creating your own mix for the party, we recommend starting your research with the 101 Best Halloween Songs site before heading to your subscription service.

Since it’s a dance, the primary activities will be about music and, well, dancing. However, most guests of any age appreciate a group game or other activity as an ice breaker.

Did you know that the song “Monster Mash” turned 50 years old this year? Recruit a couple of friends to lead a group line dance to celebrate. The dance has been choreographed many ways including Zumba versions, so be sure everyone’s practicing to the same video. You can turn it into a contest if you like, or just concentrate on drawing as many participants as you can.

We have several photo op stand-ins in Halloween activities that you can personalize, and you can hold a Monster Vogue contest in which costumed guests can demonstrate their most frightening – and, hopefully, their most hilarious – fashion model poses. These activities call for designated photographers or perhaps a supply of single use cameras for everyone.

Posted in Halloween 2012, Halloween Dance, Halloween Decorating Ideas, Halloween Decorations, Halloween Food | Tagged: , , | Leave a Comment »

Our Favorite Halloween Party Foods, Games, and Decorations-Interviews with Local Celebs

Posted by Wendy Moyle on October 9, 2012

With Halloween just around the corner, local Fort Wayne celebrities are offering their tips for spooky Halloween fun. We caught up with some on-air personalities to get their take on the holiday.

Charly Butcher, host of Ft. Wayne’s Morning News on Newstalk 1190 WOWO says his favorite part of Halloween is handing out candy to trick-or-treaters. Though he enjoys seeing the kids in their costumes, the best Halloween costume he’s seen in years was at a local nightclub. One patron wore an Oscar the Grouch costume, trashcan and all: “He could sit down and put the lid on it. He was on the dance floor, so it just looked like there was this big can on the dance floor, and he popped out of the can as Oscar the Grouch and scared everybody.”

Aside from handing out the candy, his favorite part of Halloween is carving pumpkins with his kids. Charly’s known as a master pumpkin carver around the Butcher house. The secret to his pumpkins is using templates and lots of patience. If you love carving pumpkins too, check out these tips for protecting your jack o’lantern from mold and dehydration.

For the ultimate Halloween decorations, Charly suggests lots of spider webs and strobe lights. He suggests, “You can do pretty cool things with multiple strobes. One looks lame; three looks awesome if you set them up right. You want to use them against the wall so it lights up off-angle to indirectly light the cobwebs and stuff.” He also suggests using fog machines or dry ice to create a bubbling cauldron: “a smoke machine inside of a cauldron looks like it’s bubbling out. One of those mini-smoke machines is perfect for that.”

Down the hall in the K105 studio, morning host Dude Walker‘s favorite part of Halloween is “scaring the crap out of people at the station.” He enjoys playing “fun natured” pranks, like waiting for people to come into their offices and jumping out to scare them or wearing masks.

At home he loves to take his kids trick-or-treating and seeing the kids Halloween costumes. His favorite costume recently was “a kid that was dressed up as a UPS man and he was pulling a make-shift doll and his little brother was dressed up as a package.” Sometimes, however, the grown-ups aren’t as cute. Dude notes, “We go to the adult parties and there’s usually people with borderline offensive costumes…There’s always somebody who takes it to the nth degree.”

If Dude could host the ultimate Halloween party, he says it would have a Fear Factor theme featuring “gross food, nasty food, brains. And lots of beer.”

Jim Shovlin, announcer for the Ft. Wayne Tin Caps and many local high school sports,  grew up in Fort Wayne and has fond memories of trick-or-treating two nights in a row. He and his group would visit the houses on October 30th and then change masks and go again on October 31st, earning twice the candy. I guess that’s trick and treat. As a parent, he also enjoyed trick-or-treating and now, as a grandfather of three, he’s looking forward to seeing the kids’ costumes. “When they text me those pictures I’ll get a little teary-eyed because they’ll look so cute.” His two year-old grandson “thinks he’s a Ninja Turtle,” Shovlin says. “He’d wear [that costume] every day if he could. With little kids they really get into it and put everything they’ve got into the costume.”

Like Charly, Shovlin also enjoys carving pumpkins and seeing the unique designs people come up with. He also thinks of the jack o’lantern as a bit of a personality test: “You can tell a little about a person’s personality based on the pumpkin they carve. If it’s a smiley face you can tell that person is a little bubbly. If they carved a mean face you kind of wonder about that person or maybe they had a bad day when they carved it.”

For his ultimate Halloween party, Shovlin would host the event in an old mansion and “No one would be admitted without a cool, cool costume.” The event would feature spooky decorations such as coffins smoking with dry ice, skeletons, and plenty of spiderwebs, “the usual ghouls and goblins of Halloween…the Addams Family would probably be in attendance.” For his party, there’d also be classic Halloween activities, such as bobbing for apples.  He asserts, “If you’re going to have a Halloween party, you really should go all out and get into the spirit.”

Finally, Shovlin notes the holiday spirit that comes along with Halloween, especially when people get involved with decorating their homes: “I really like that it’s not just Christmas that you see people putting decorations out for. With Halloween there’s the black and orange and I think those are traditions in this country that should be kept special.”

You can create your ultimate Halloween party like Charly, Dude, and Jim using ShindigZ Halloween decorations and kits. Create an old mansion setting using one of our Haunted House Kits or the crypt silhouette. Accent the yard in front of your house with personalized tombstones with funny or creepy names on them. Our zombie standees add an extra-spooky touch that’s perfectly on trend. Finish the look off with a smoke machine to create billowing Halloween fog.

On the inside of the party, set your tables with creepy Halloween tableware. And add our creepy cuts in a selection of eyeballs, limbs, or fingers to  the buffet table for a gross-out factor like at Dude’s Fear Factor party. Creating creepy food that isn’t quite as wild as Fear Factor can be a fun activity for adults or kids. You can make white chocolate eyeballs with pretzels and M-n-M’s as the pupil. A brain mold and pink Jell-O mix makes for a creepy edible focal point on your dessert table.

Set up wall decor or standees of creepy characters or add some cob webs around the room to add to the haunted mansion feel. Add strobe lights to your party space to create an unnerving ambiance. Remember, like Charly suggests, set the strobes along the wall so they light decorations at an angle and create an effect of seeing spooky sights out of the corner of your eye. Don’t forget Halloween costumes for your family! If cool costumes are a must-have for your guests, you’ll want to have an awesome alter-ego as well.

Halloween is just three-weeks away and Ft. Wayne is decked out in autumn leaves and spooky decor. What are your favorite Halloween traditions or party decorating ideas? Sound off in the comments!

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Adult Halloween Theme Parties

Posted by Wendy Moyle on September 28, 2012

Halloween is not just for the kids, it is also for the kids at heart, and this year can prove to be even more pleasingly ghastly with an adult themed Halloween party.

Host a Villainous Vampire Party:

Vampires are timeless and signature figures that have haunted the myths of Halloween for ages. Your guests will go batty for this year’s Villainous Vampire themed party when they step into your dreadfully transformed lair displaying the freighting sights of vampire scenes. But don’t turn your back; they just might bite into the fun.

Host a Murder Mystery Party:

Let your friends pick up the pieces to the clues with a Murder Mystery Party. Turn your home into a terrifying crime scene and spend the evening figuring out which one of your friends has done it. But once you find the smooth criminal, be sure to give him the life sentence.

Host a Wicked Rhythms – Nursery Rhythms Party:

Hickory dickory dock, the mouse ran up the clock, your clock struck one, and your party began, hickory dickory dock… only this year, with your Nursery Rhythms Party, your fairytale rhythms will become antagonist nightmares. Let your guests show their creative storybook-side when they turn America’s pastime favorites into fearsome foes. Little Miss Muffet just might frighten the spider away!

Host a Zombie Apocalypse Party:

There’s not much more that is able to invoke fear than the threat of doomsday, and this year you can give your friends a reason to collapse with your Zombie Apocalypse themed party. They’ll wish that night never… ended!

Host a Deadly Wedding Party:

Your guests will shiver when they walk down the isle of death at your Deadly Wedding Party. Turn your funeral home into a gruesome night of I-do’s, unless of course, they don’ t make it to their wedding night. Either way, the wedding couple will be in for a night to remember!

However you decide to host an adult themed Halloween part, don’t forget to ask your guests to come dressed in their themed Halloween costume. This year’s party is sure to cause a scream!

Posted in Halloween 2012, Halloween Decorating Ideas, Halloween Decorations, Halloween Party, Halloween Theme Parties, Zombies! | Tagged: | Leave a Comment »

Plan a Pumpkin Carving Party

Posted by Wendy Moyle on September 19, 2012

Oh, October.  It’s such an animated time of year with bustling ideas, parties, and fun.  Childhood-like energy vivaciously radiates through joyful smiles.  Adults passionately reminisce their childhood days as they blissfully entice little ghosts and goblins with both tricks and treats.  Pumpkins and scarecrows eagerly collect their sweet treats with spooky smirks. Everyone – young and young at heart, finds enjoyment in the frightening fun of happy hauntings and petrifying parties!

Host a Pumpkin Carving Party!

October is adorned with straw, warm colored mums, gourds, and pumpkins. What better way to decorate your haunted house than with a pumpkin, perfectly carved out by your munchkin. Watch the faces of your favorite little ghouls light up with excitement when they come to your pumpkin carving party!

Get as creepily creative as you’d like!

Carve Out Your Invites:

When planning a pumpkin carving party, it is important to set the date to your evening of thrills.

  • Consider a night when the weather is not too brisk, you’ll likely want to host the fun in your garage for easy clean up, and you’ll avoid the hands of your little ones getting too cold while they are playing in the pumpkin goo. The weather may be unavoidable in the event you want to show off your creativity at Halloween; pumpkins don’t last long once they’ve been carved.
  • Purchase and prepare your Halloween party invites with details. Don’t forget to include RSVP information; you’ll need it to prepare your party.
  • Send out your party invites to all of your guest goblins.

Planning For Your Party:

Give your little werewolf something to howl about!

After your guest goblins have returned their RSVPs, it is time to prepare for your party.

  • Stop by your local Farmer’s Market and purchase one carving-size pumpkin for each of your guests. You may want to have a couple extra on hand, too. If you don’t use them at the party, you can always place them out to embellish your home during the holidays.
  •  Pick up some pumpkin carving kits – remember to have enough carving utensils on hand for each of your guests.
  • Decorate your garage into a Halloween scene with fun room transformers such as Jack O Lantern Scene Setters or Pumpkin Paper Lanterns.  Let your creativity be your guide!
  • Add some fun to the party and lay out some pumpkin shaped goodie bags for the guest goblins.  Include nose glasses and Halloween party favors.
  • Jazz up your party with some eerie edibles – try your bones at making a pumpkin cake (you can add some fun with an iridescent Jack O Lantern pan). Remember your Halloween themed plates, napkins, tableware, and plastic ware if you will have edibles.
  • Let your heart go wild; just don’t let the vampires in!

Your Pumpkin Carving Party:

  • For easy clean up, lay a large tarp down on your garage floor. When the evening is over, you will have less gooey pumpkin guts to worry about.
  • Consider decorating a corner of the garage with little hay stacks and straw or potting plants of mums. Place the pumpkins in a pile to create a pumpkin patch. Let the kids have fun picking their favorite pumpkin.
  • You may even want to set the mood of the party by playing a Halloween CD.
  • Let your guests have a gooey good time carving their pumpkin!

After your little goblin guests have finished with their spooky carving fun, let them take their personalized pumpkin home as a party favor. You will likely be the hit of Halloween!

Happy Haunting!

Posted in Decorating Kits, Ghost Decorations, Halloween 2012, Halloween Decorating Ideas, Halloween Decorations, Halloween Favors, Halloween Food, Halloween Outdoor Decor, Halloween Party, Halloween Tabletop, Halloween Theme Parties, Party Tips, Trick-or-Treat | Tagged: , | Leave a Comment »