Alternatives to Trick-or-treating

Alternatives to Trick-or-Treating 

Not sure how you feel about trick-or-treating this year or any year for that matter? You’re not alone. Something about sending kids out to get candy from a bunch of different people just isn’t my favorite.  I’ve hung in there over the years and let my kiddos participate because it’s a bit of a childhood rite of passage you could say. This year with the coronavirus, it really doesn’t jive with me.  My kids are getting older so they’re okay with doing something different. After throwing out a few ideas, we’ve decided to have a couple friends over for some backyard fun.  

The kids have been working hard on creating a haunted trail in the backyard for the past week and are super excited about having a few friends come walk through it. We’ll be watching a movie in the backyard, having a fire to roast marshmallows & hotdogs, dressing up, and painting pumpkins.  Halloween doesn’t have to only consist of trick-or-treating, check out this list of other ideas: 

Backyard Movie Night 

Hang up a sheet, bust out the projector, choose a scary movie, cuddle up and enjoy. For an added bonus, someone could dress up for a mid-movie scare. 

Campout 

What a great excuse to go camping. Spend some quality time outdoors with family and friends. Whether you choose to travel or just backyard camp, this can make for a super fun Halloween. I remember going camping at a campground on Halloween when I was a kid, it was a blast. We sat around the campfire and told ghost stories along with all the other traditional camping shenanigans. You could even make it a yearly tradition.  

Create a Haunted Trail or Garage 

Growing up in the country, our trick-or-treating consisted of driving to a few family members’ homes and showing off our costumes for a little bit of candy.  When I went with a friend around a neighborhood, in what might have been 5th or 6th grade, it was like a whole different world of trick-or-treating!  

Anyhow, instead of a trick-or-treating we had a Halloween party every year. My sisters and I would take our old detached garage and decorate it with spooky, (what we thought at the time was), awesome scary stuff. We would get a few friends or cousins to come over and dress up like haunted characters and have family walk through. Honestly, putting it together was probably just as fun or more fun than the actual event.  

I suggest encouraging your kiddos to get creative, come up with creepy things to add to the haunted house, add some dim lighting and scary music and invite friends to come check it out. They’ll have a blast and probably forget about trick-or-treating all together. 

Dress up and handout candy, Judge the trick-or-treater costumes, and give out prizes to favorites 

As kids get older, they can play the part of the “candy passer outer”. If the whole family gets involved, it can pretty fun. Dress up and sit on the porch for a little scare for the trick-or-treaters. Judge the costumes and give special prizes out to your favorites.  

Plan a getaway 

Want to get away from it all and not feel guilty for not participating this year. Plan a getaway. Halloween may just be the perfect time to take your family to those family friendly hotspots that are always super packed. Think about it…a good majority of families will be celebrating Halloween at home, why not enjoy a little time away? If the kids want to dress up, pack the costumes and hit up the local ice cream or coffee shop.  A quick Google search will likely highlight a few local businesses giving away some free or discounted goods or services for those who wear their costumes when they visit. 

Costume party 

Skip the chaos and bring the costumes to your house. Have a costume party (outdoors and socially distanced this year of course). Add some fun games and contests like best costume or best Halloween treat, kids and adults both will have a blast. 

Find a Haunted forest or trail  

Haunted forest or trails can be scary so you may want to save this one for the older kiddos or find one that’s age appropriate. A good scare on Halloween always makes for a memorable one.  

I’m sure there are many other fun things you  could do instead of going out and loading up on candy that only makes you cringe. Get creative, have some family fun and soon they’ll forget all about trick-or-treating. Happy Halloween! 

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