Friday, October 26, 2012

5 Tips for Setting up a Spooky Home for Trick-or-Treaters

Trick-or-Treating is fun no matter what, but the best homes are the ones that go the extra mile to create a spooky Halloween atmosphere. It's easy to create your own outdoor-version of a Haunted Yard. If you have kids, they'll love to be in on the fun. All it takes is one trip to a hardware store - and thinking "outside the Jack-o-Lantern" - in order to create a spooky trick-or-treat experience.

5 Tips for Setting up a Spooky Home for Trick-or-Treaters
  1. A Startling Ghost. One of the simplest ways to scare someone is to startle them. You can create your own flying ghost (or mummy, vampire, zombie, etc.) from materials you already have. The ghost idea is the simplest because you only need a white sheet and a ball for the "head," tied off at the neck with a rope. Rig it in a tree or rafter near the front door via a rope long enough to stretch inside. You need a volunteer to sit inside the front door with a view of the front walk-way. Whenever a trick-or-treater is about to approach the ghost's path, simply ease up on the rope and let it swing down towards them. Even adults get pretty shocked by this one. Once the ghost has worked its magic, pull the rope tight sending it out of sight again, in wait for it's next victim.
  2. Disgusting Witch Cauldrons. You can buy black plastic cauldrons at a dollar store or a local Halloween outlet. Buy some spray-foam insulation and fill the cauldrons with it. Make sure some of them are on their side so you can have the "disgusting brew" spilling out of them. Once the insulation has dried, you can spray paint it any color - or a glow-in-the-dark motif is good too - and affix all kinds of nasty ingredients: bloody eyeballs, snakes, spiders, brains, rats, and whatever else you can find to repulse viewers.
  3. Silhouetted Lawn Figures. There are a plethora of online patterns you can find to create silhouetted lawn figures of all types, witches stirring brew, cats, skeletons, you name it. You can use cardboard but you risk it falling apart if it's not properly supported. Once you've cut them out, paint them solidly black and stake them in your yard. You can add extra special effects like masks, blood, gore, or whatever helps to promote your theme.
  4. Dry Ice. A little dry ice can go a long way. By setting up some dry ice areas around your yard, you will enhance the spooky theme and also mask any imperfections in your decor. Make sure to observe dry ice handling precautions to avoid burns.
  5. Scary Sound Tracks. From haunted house sound tracks to the screams of a torture chamber, you can find all types of scary Halloween sound effects online to help creep out your neighborhood trick-or-treaters. Any haunted scene is scarier with an appropriate soundtrack.
Have fun creating a spooky home for your trick-or-treaters. With the right attention to detail, your house will be favorite Halloween Haunt on the block.

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