The Halloween season is right around the corner! Whether you’re planning a party, a game, or just having a spooky time, we’ve rounded up 50 scary ideas for you. Let’s take a quick look at Halloween’s history before we get started.
History of Halloween
This holiday actually combines two different holidays-the Celtic festival of Samhain and the Catholic celebration of All Saints Day.
The origins of this tradition can be traced back to ancient Celtic spiritual traditions. Usually celebrated from October 31 to November 1, Samhain (pronounced “SAH-win”) welcomes the harvest and ushers in “the dark half of the year.”
Fast forward about two thousand years. It was at this point that Christianity had reached Celtic lands. November 1 marks All Saints Day, a day dedicated to honoring martyrs and saints. In the end, the two celebrations became more or less merged and new traditions were introduced, such as trick-or-treating, ghost stories, costumes, etc., to form what we now call Halloween.
Here are some fun Halloween activities
Whether you’re planning a party, passing out candy, or just having fun at home with your family on Halloween, here are 50 ideas to get you started.
- Tell scary stories and roast marshmallows around the fire pit in the backyard.
- Get creative and host a costume party. It can be a character from a movie or book, a uniform from a profession, or a villain from history.
- Halloween potlucks are great for bringing spooky food and treats.
- Your home can be transformed into a haunted house and your guests will have a blast exploring it. Several people can dress up and jump out to scare your guests and up the scare factor.
- Use leftover Halloween candy to make Halloween crafts, such as a candy wreath
- Organize a cookie-decorating party by whipping up some cookies and frosting
- Make jack-o-lanterns and have a BYOP (bring your own pumpkin!) party. Additionally, you can ask your guests to vote on their favorite or you can award Scariest, Funniest, or Most Creative participants.
- Put on a scary movie and watch it in the dark.
- Put on a murder mystery dinner. Send invites to guests and encourage them to dress up as their favorite character. (You can find kits, accessories, and scripts online.)
- You don’t like scary things? You could organize a fall festival with hay bales, apples, leaves, and fall décor.
- Photo booths with Halloween props can be set up. Among the ideas you can use are hats, sunglasses, feather boas, and fake snakes.
- Scavenger hunts are spooky fun. The items you hide can be fake bones, candy, or anything themed around Halloween.
- Christmas isn’t the only time to make gingerbread houses, right? This holiday favorite becomes spooky with a Halloween gingerbread house.
- Throw a glow party! Make glow sticks into necklaces and bracelets, wear glow in the dark clothes, and dim the lights.
- Hosting a Pumpkin Spice party will be a blast if you love all things pumpkin spice. Burn scented candles and serve pumpkin-spiced drinks and treats.
- Don’t wait until it gets dark to have fun! Inviting guests to wear costumes to a Halloween brunch is a great way to bring your Halloween party to life.
- Participate in fall activities at a local pumpkin patch.
- Having a “Boos and Brews” beer tasting or cocktail party is a great option for your adults-only party. The season is perfect for sampling seasonal drinks, such as beers and wines flavored with pumpkin or apples.
- Organize a pet costume party and invite your friends and family to bring their pets. Make sure your four-legged friends also get treats.
- Get your friends together and host your own monster mash. Whether you are a kid or an adult, this theme is great. Organize a Halloween music playlist. The dance floor can even be decorated with a fog machine!
Game ideas for Halloween
- A classic Halloween game is bobbing for apples. The apples can be hung along a clothesline if you want to do it in a more hygienic manner. With hands-free eating, guests can eat as much of the apple as they can.
- Get ready for Halloween bingo! Make your own cards or download some online. Make sure winners receive fun prizes. Halloween candy can be used as markers for a fun twist.
- Halloween isn’t just about treats – you can also play tricks! Make spooky noises or talk to your visitors if you have a doorbell camera.
- With a Halloween twist, Scattergories makes a great party game.
- A great game for kids is Pin the Spider on the Web. Try pinning a spider cutout (using tape) to a large spider web you’ve made on the wall.
- Make index cards with Halloween-related phrases and movies
- With construction paper and any ring-shaped object, such as glow-stick bracelets or diving rings, make your own witch hat ring toss.
- Adding a Halloween twist to bean bag toss or cornhole is easy. Play the game of putting the most bags in a box decorated as a monster or jack-o-lantern.
- Everyone knows how to play Halloween tic tac toe. Tape a giant board on the floor, then mark it with miniature pumpkins and gourds.
- The ghost race is a ghoulish variation on potato sack races, marked by white pillowcases with ghostly designs.
- Name That Tune is fun when you play a few seconds of a Halloween song and see who guesses it right away! The lines from songs can also be written on cards, and you can see how many can be guessed correctly.
- It would be fun to play a photo scavenger hunt with a large group. Teams can hunt for Halloween-related items, such as black cats, ghost decorations, or pumpkins, and take pictures of them.
- Got some leftover Halloween candy? Not sure what to do with it? Turn it into a guessing game and see who can guess the most candies are left.
- Why not try bobbing for apples with a sweet twist? String up some donuts! Make a clothesline or rope with ribbons and hang donuts from it. Try not to let the donut fall off the ribbon as you eat it (no hands!)
- Ghost in the Graveyard is a game you won’t want to miss! It’s a great Halloween game for kids, teens, and adults.
- It is a fun activity for kids to paint their faces, and many Halloween objects (such as witch hats, ghosts, and pumpkins) are easy to paint as well.
- Using orange food coloring and pumpkin-shaped cookie cutters, make pumpkin Rice Krispie treats.
- It is still possible for children to decorate pumpkins without carving them. You can paint pumpkins much safer, easier, and less messy!
- The pumpkin stomp is a fun way for kids to burn off their energy. Make pumpkins out of orange balloons and let your kids stomp them.
- Kids can color or paint Halloween-themed coloring pages.
- Painting Halloween rocks is a great way for kids to get crafty. You can paint monsters, ghosts, and pumpkins on rocks.
- Rather than trick-or-treating, let kids enjoy Halloween candy with a Halloween pinata.
- Let kids decorate masks with feathers, googly eyes, and other materials by printing them out online (or buying them from a craft store).
- An “eyeball hunt” involves putting googly eyes throughout your yard or house, just like an easter egg hunt. Kids “hunt” for the eyes and trade them in for candy.
- With pumpkin candy and plastic cauldrons or candy bowls, you can play pumpkin toss.
- Wrap tissues around lollipops and tie a ribbon around the base to create ghosts. You can attach googly eyes or make faces by using a marker.
- Play musical chairs while listening to Halloween music.
- Getting their wiggles out is easy with Monster Freeze Dance. During Halloween music, kids can dance and stop when the music stops. Those who continue to dance after the music stops are out.
- Family movies or cartoons about Halloween are fun to watch together.
- Pick up some Halloween-related books from the library with your kids.