Since I moved to the States I realized that Halloween is a huge huge holiday here. And when my little ones where old enough to walk I started enjoying their excitement about dressing up, decorating the house, carving the pumpkin…and the trick-or-treat traditional walk.
2020 definitely challenged our creativity this year. The dilemma as a parent is to balance safety and respect of the guidelines with the kids’ desire of having fun and celebrating. Sometimes thinking outside the box is helpful and what I’ve been saying to my boys is that even if this year will not be the traditional Halloween celebration, it doesn’t mean that it will not be as much fun or even more fun than the previous years.
That’s my plan: an outdoor afternoon of Halloween themed games in the backyard and a glow in the dark final dance with Halloween music. To be sincere we never did our Trick-or-Treat walk in the dark: the kids are too young and get scared very easily as soon as the light goes away.
Here my Hunted Halloween Backyard Party for tomorrow. I’m sharing with you the plan and tomorrow I will upload the images 🙂
1. HALLOWEEN TREASURE HUNT
We started having treasure hunts at the last birthday and also for Easter. They are ALWAYS a big hit. The kids looove to run from place to place to find the next clue. The excitement of finding the clue is even higher than the final prize. When I prepare the clues for our treasure hunts I always try:
- To keep it simple. Kids needs to be challenged but not frustrated because they cannot find the solution. I take in consideration the age of the kids and try to prepare easy ones for little kids and more tricky ones for older kids.
- To choose objects that have a meaning for our family and are easier to guess. An example. My kids’ favorite stuffed animal is “Sharky”. The clue could be “As spooky as Halloween could be, Sharky with you always will be. He might even hold your next clue!” And the next clue can be under the stuffed animal.
- To do not worry about rhymes. I know that a clue with a rhyme is very Pinterest friendly, but reality is that the kids will not notice the missing rhyme and it will take you way less time to think about clues without rhyme.
How to hide the clues? You need to start from the end, from the last one and go back.
Here the clues for our Halloween Hunt, please feel free to use them or personalize them.
And if you wonder which are the solutions…
Trampoline + Fridge + Pumpkin + BBQ + Chicken Coup + Swing + Front Door + Washing Machine + White Couch + Toy Piano + Water Dispenser + Doormat.
2. HALLOWEEN SCAVENGER HUNT
Another fun hunt either indoor or outdoor. I usually divide the family in teams, adults and kids mixed. Every team has a clipboard and a pencil with a paper. They will need to write on the paper as many items they can find around them that start with a specific letter or that have a specific color. This hunt is so versatile and can really adapted to so many holidays!
3. HALLOWEEN TOILET PAPER MUMMY
This is a fun game to play in team. I like the mummy to be daddy 🙂 The kids have 4 toilet paper rolls and 10 minutes to transform daddy into a mummy. There will be a resistance test at the end: Daddy will have to do a mummy walk from point A to point B without the bandage to fall. You can make it even trickier creating a complicated obstacle course for the mummy. I’m sure the kids will love it!
4. HANGING EATING DONUT CONTEST
We played this game at a school event once and it was such a hit that we replicated at home! You will need a donut for each kid, a string and a space where you can hang the string with the donut attached so that it will barely reach the mouth of each kid. A patio with two poles is a good example. You will tie the string horizontally to the two poles. Then you will tie a string around each donut and hang the donuts from the string. Leave enough space in between the donuts for the kids to be placed under and not be too crowded. Also adjust the length of the string based on how tall each kid is.
Place all the contestants one next to the other with a donut hanging above them and ask them to keep their hands behind the back. Ready, set, go! Let the kids try to eat the whole donut in the least amount of time. If part of the donut falls on the floor I usually consider it eaten. 🙂
5. APPLE BOBBING
This is another fun game but kids might get wet. I suggest to organize it when it’s not freezing outside, to keep it outside and to get ready with a change of clothes, at least a tee. Apple bobbing involves dunking your head into a tub of lukewarm water, biting into and holding the apple in one’s mouth without using your hands. I like using small apples so that little ones can try too. I love the giggles of the other kids watching whoever is trying to bob the apple. Adults can race too!!
6. PUMPKIN ON THE HEAD RACE
I use the little decorative pumpkins, they are light weight and usually hold well on a kid’s head. The race is easy. You decide a starting and ending point. Line up the kids with a pumpkin on their head. Remind them that they cannot use their hands to hold the pumpkin and let the race begin. Whoever arrives at the end without the pumpkin falling, wins. If a pumpkin falls halfway, the kid needs to start again.
7. BOILED EGG ON THE SPOON RACE
I took this game from the Easter celebration and simply colored the boiled eggs with Halloween colors. You don’t need to color the eggs. A shortcut decoration can be done easily using Halloween stickers 🙂
The game. Each kid will place a boiled egg on a wooden spoon. They need to race from point A to point B holding the spoon with one or two hands without touching the egg. Who arrives at the end with the egg still on the spoon wins.
8. FIND THE DECORATION HUNT
Make a list of all the Halloween decorations around the house/backyard/front yard. Maybe hide some of them in not so easy to find places and have the kids run around and find ALL of them!
This part is as important as the games. I like small prizes, the dollar store is an awesome place where to find them. I divide the prizes in black plastic bag, one for each kid. After each game the winner or winners can choose which bag they can pick a prize from. It’s important that they do not pick inside the bags (that’s why the dark not see through color), they only insert their hand and choose. This is a lovely mystery prize game too. The kids love that they change bag every time.
TRICK OR TREAT IN THE BACKYARD
When the traditional neighborhood trick or treat is not an alternative, why not organizing it in the backyard?? I have few ideas:
- Hide the candies all around the backyard like for an Easter egg hunt.
- Create a candy garden attaching candies to the bushes or trees with pins or tape them to sticks inserted in the grass like flowers.
- Fill paper cups with candies and distribute them all around the backyard. This is easier for little ones.
GLOW IN THE DARK DANCE
That’s my favorite. Activate as many glow sticks as you can. Let the kids create necklaces, bracelets, glasses or even skeleton dresses and turn the music on. Let the glow in the dark Halloween party begin!!
Do you have more Halloween Party Ideas? Please share them in the comment here below!
I wish you a super fun and safe Halloween celebration!!