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1st Halloween Party Help

we bought our 1st home last Nov. & wanted to have a summer housewarming outdoor party, but we weren't ready yet.  So now we're thinking Halloween/ Housewarming Party outdoors. We live in Chicago, so the weather is soooo iffy - we *hope* it'll be decent enough to be outside b/c our house is too small to have people indoors.

So.... the party will be in the backyard, which is big. We plan to have music and bean bag games set up.  What other games can we do outdoors that'll be fun?  I was thinking bobbing for jello shots, ha :)

Also, what are some DIY outdoor halloween decor things to do? We want to DIY tombstones with funny sayings on them, but not sure how to make them?  What other cheap DIY decorations can we do/ buy?

Re: 1st Halloween Party Help

  • oooo I just thought we could call it a "Haunted Housewarming Party" or something like that. Maybe we could have a costume contest? I also just thought that I will need cheap indoor decor ideas, too, since people will be going inside for bathroom & for the food.  any ideas for that as well?
  • Maybe for the food you could do something like soup or a stew that you could fix in a crockpot. 
  • You can make the tombstones out of styrofoam.  When we were kids, my dad would go to nearby construction sites and ask them if they had any styrofoam sheets or boards, and he'd bring them home and we'd cut them out and carve into them, and then spray paint them.  They really look like weathered marble once you spray paint them.  Then we'd adhere them to garden takes (or tent stakes, whatever we had handy) and stake them into the yard.  My mom and dad also used to get us construction paper and raffia and we'd make all kinds of halloween cut-outs to hand on the walls & ceiling, and make shadow-scapes for windows (bats, pumpkins, skeletons, witches flying over the moon, etc).  Pumpkins are always a great way to get added decor.  Whether they are carved, painted, or just plain pumpkins.  A friend of mine makes "Halloween Trees" in her backyard...by hanging ornaments (home made or store bought), small pumpkins, fall leaves, halloween garland and tin-can lanterns from the trees in her backyard. 

    The tin can lanterns are SO easy to make and look super cute as well.  Just start to collect the tin cans that are left over from used canned goods.  Clean off the paper wrappers off of them.  Then take a can opener, a few screw drivers, etc (anything that can perforate tin) and begin to make designes by poking through the tin.  You can spray paint them, or leave them plain, wrap ribbins around them, glue buttons, beads, jewels, spiders, etc onto them (basically whatever you want) and place tea lights in them.  For hanging lanterns, you can use wire to create a "handle" at the top of the tin can by looping it through the holes at the top of the can (then you punctured) and securing it by twisting the wire.

    Last year, I threw a Hallowee party, and for the invitations, I just bought regular orange blank card stock cards at Target, then on the computer found a sketch of a haunted mansion and printed those out, along with separate sheets with the party details on them.  I then cut the pictures out so that theyd fit on the cards, then soaked them in strong tea (to make them look like antique drawings) and then after they dried, glued them to the cards.  After the cards were placed in the envelopes, I had a bit of fun with the lighter and burned a bit of the edges and the seams (just a bit, dont go overboard because you dont want it to start looking like a pirate map) just enough to add an antique patina.  Then I Took a bit of the left over tea stained paper, and used calligraphy pens to write the recipeints' names on them, then glued those to the outer envelope.  I then tied the invitation with a thin piece of black raffia, and added a plastic spider.  Everyone loved them!

  • BH&G have great decorating and recipe ideas

    http://www.bhg.com/holidays/halloween/

    You might also want to be prepared if the weather isn't good for the party, have a back-up plan. ;)

  • Personally, I'd skip the costume contest.  I hate the pressure that goes along with coming up with a creative costume.  If would really make me re-consider going to your party.  But you know your friends.  Maybe they are into this sort of thing

     I'd suggest a pumpkin carving station where guests can do their own carving.  Its low risk, and if you really want, this could be used to decorate the back yard (candles inside the pumpkin).

     I really like the pp's suggestion of how to do the tombstones and invites.  Have fun!

    BabyFruit Ticker
  • Do you have a fire pit?  You could always tell scary stories.

     I had a party where I dressed up as a gypsy and read everyone's tarot cards.  No - I don't know how to do it, I totally BSed my way threw it and it was soo funny.

    If you and your guests are comfortable w/ it you can use a Ouji board or hold a se'ance.

    Since it is an adult party I don't think you need to fill the whole night w/ activites.  I love your idea of bobbing for jell-o shots!

    You could make "ghostly" specialty drinks.  Or just a punch w/ green food coloring and bugs or a hand floating in it.

     

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  • And "haunted housewarming" is perfect IMO!
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  • Have some Halloween themed music to help set the atmosphere.  Some songs to include: Monster Mash, Werewolves of London, Thriller, The Flying Purple People Eater One

    Hang apples on string from a tree or pole.  People have to use their mouths only (no hands!) to grab a hold of the apple.  

    I agree with pp- if it's mostly adults you won't need tons of activities.  I'd think about a tent for the yard in case it rains.  Also, maybe you could rent a couple of those patio heaters they have at restaurants.  I have also seen them for sale at Costco but don't know if you'd want to buy one.  

    image Baby Birthday Ticker Ticker
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