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Halloween Party Vault


Welcome to the Halloween Party Vault! We have lots of information here, and hope it helps you to plan the perfect Halloween party!


Halloween History

Halloween is the one of the oldest holidays still celebrated today.  And, it's one of the most popular holidays, second only to Christmas. While millions of people celebrate Halloween without knowing its origins and myths, the history and facts of Halloween make it more fascinating.

Some people view Halloween as a time for fun, putting on costumes, trick-or-treating, and having theme parties. Others view it as a time of superstitions, ghosts, goblins and evil spirits that should be avoided at all costs.

Halloween is always on October 31st, the last day of the Celtic calendar. It was originally a pagan holiday, honoring the dead. Halloween was referred to as All Hallows Eve and dates back to over 2000 years ago.  All Hallows Eve is the evening before All Saints Day, which was created by Christians to convert pagans, and is celebrated on November 1st. The Catholic church honored saints on this designated day.

Halloween culture can be traced back to the Druids, a Celtic culture in Ireland, Britain and Northern Europe. The roots lie in the feast of Samhain, which was on October 31st to honor the dead.  Samhain signifies "summers end" or November. Samhain was a harvest festival with huge sacred bonfires, marking the end of the Celtic year and beginning of a new one. Many of the practices involved in this celebration were fed on superstition.

The Celts believed the souls of the dead roamed the streets at night. Since not all spirits were thought to be friendly, gifts and treats were left out to pacify the evil and ensure next years crops would be plentiful. This custom evolved into trick-or-treating.


Party Planning

If you'd like a creepy-crawly good time for your guests, then plan a party for your most fiendishly fun friends. We have all the ingredients needed to make such a successful Halloween party that no ghoul or goblin will ever forget.

It's a Party Countdown:
Planning is the secret to a successful party. Once everything is thought out, your party will run smoothly.

One Month Ahead: Decide on the date, time, place, and number of guests for your party. Plan on one guest for each year of your child's age. For a 7-year-old, invite no more than seven guests. Start by buying or making your invitations. They can be cute or spooky -- it's all up to you. Plan the party length with your child's age in mind. Two hours is enough for your 1- to 3-year-old, and three hours is appropriate for a 10-year-old.

Two Weeks Ahead: Call your child's best friends to make sure they can make the party date before you invite the other guests. This gives you the opportunity to pick a different date so your child has his special friends at the party. Phone, email or mail the invitations.  If you're mailing them, be sure to ask for an R.S.V.P. so you'll know exactly how many kids to expect. Have guests to wear their Halloween costumes to the party  Make plans for the menu, activities, prizes, and decorations. Plan more games to play than you'll have time for. This allows you to go on to another game if your guests aren't having fun.

One Week Ahead: Make or purchase the party favors, prizes, and decorations. The big day will be here before you can say "BOO"!   Don't forget to shop for the food! See our recipes below.

Two or Three Days Ahead: Double-check the final guest list and make a tentative schedule for what you'll be doing at the party.

The Day Before the Party:   Decorate for your party.  Start early, as this always takes longer than you expect.  Same with the food.  Anything you can do ahead now will make the day of the party much more fun for everyone!

 

Decorating

We have many, many decorations for Halloween.  Some very simple, such as crepe paper and other basic party decor.  We also have everything you could want to decorate for the ultimate Halloween party!  HERE are more of our decorations.

Some more ideas are:
  •   SpecimenJars:  For FINGERS, use Vienna Sausages;
  • for BRAINS, use Shredded Cabbage;
  • for Eyes, use Hard-Boiled Eggs (Cook, crack, and dye with tea bags).
  • Litter Box: Get a NEW littler box and scoop, a box of Grape Nuts, powdered sugar, and a bag of tootsie rolls. Mix the Grape Nuts and powdered sugar, and pour into the litter box. Unwrap the tootsie rolls, and mix randomly in the litter box. Very gross, but perfect for Halloween. Kids will LOVE this!
  • Fill jack-o'-lanterns with dry ice and a little water -  vapor will float out of the jack-o'-lantern. (Be sure that the room where you are using the dry ice is well ventilated, and protect your hands by wearing heavy gloves . Give the room an eerie glow by using a green light bulb .)
 


Pumpkin Carving

We have two different pumpkin carving kits:


Here are some great carving ideas, so you can use your pumpkin carving kit!

 

  




Costume Ideas

We have LOTS of COSTUMES, along with WIGS, MAKEUP, and ACCESSORIES to make your costume extra-special!



Makeup Tips

Realistic Looking Mint Blood

  • 2/3 cup Corn Syrup
  • 1/3 cup Water
  • 5 Tablespoons Corn Starch
  • 3 to 5 Teaspoons Red Food Coloring
  • 2 or 3 Drops Green Food Coloring
  • 1 Drop Peppermint extract, if desired.
Mix the Corn starch thoroughly with the water. Add the Corn Syrup. Mix well. Add red food coloring into the mixture, using only 3 tsp at first. Then add a couple drops of green food coloring to take the 'pink' edge off the red coloring. If the mixture is too light, add one or two teaspoons more red food coloring. Add an extra drop of green food coloring if the mixture gets too pink again (Real blood is slightly on the dark red to reddish brown side, when its not fresh from the heart). Add one drop of Peppermint extract if you wish a fresh minty blood mixture. The concoction tastes quite pleasant, and can be used as makeup or a "Glass of Wine" for your vampire to drink.

I've also been informed that Milk can be added (instead of or with the cornstarch) to keep the blood from being too transparent. White glue was also given as a suggestion, but if you go that route I wouldn't suggest using the mixture on or in your mouth.

Clear Blood for Wine Glasses

Real blood is foggy or opaque, but clear liquid looks better in a wine glass. Try this recipe:

  • 1/2 cup Grenadine Syrup
  • 1/2 cup Corn Syrup
  • 1 to 3 Drops Green Food Coloring
Mix the Grenadine and Corn Syrup through each other. Add green food coloring one drop at a time, mixing thoroughly after each, until the 'pink' edge has been taken off the mixture. Pour into a wine glass, and swirl. The concoction looks very good under bright light, and moves with the viscosity of thick blood. If you plan to drink it, though, I recommend you cut it half-half with water.

Chocolate Blood

I was promised the recipe years ago, but only came across it quite recently. It was worth the wait. The mixture may seem odd, but it tastes pretty good, looks surprisingly like real blood, splatters like real blood, dries like real blood, and had several people asking me if I was really okay after that staged fight....

  • 1/2 cup water
  • 1 tablespoon cocoa powder
  • 3 or 4 tablespoon corn syrup
  • 1/2 to 1 teaspoon red food coloring
  • 2 drops yellow or green food coloring (optional)

Mix the cocoa powder thoroughly into the water before adding the other ingredients - it may help to use warm water. After adding the rest, blend the concoction well, and then wait for it to settle a bit. Either skim the bubbles & chocolate scum off the top with the edge of a Kleenex, or pour the mixture into another container. The longer it sits, the more the cocoa tends to settle to the bottom, which oddly mimics the effect of real blood separating.

If you splatter this mixture onto cloth, it makes neat two-part marks which dry into pretty convincing bloodstains. If you let it run from a victim's mouth and then let it dry, the blood darkens and cakes to the skin in much the same way real blood does. I can also say from personal experience that any washcloth used to wipe down the 'bloody' face afterward looks remarkably realistic, too.

Gore Blood

  • 2/3 cup Oriental 'Cherry' Dipping Sauce
  • 1/3 cup Water
  • 1/2 Teaspoon Red Food Coloring
  • 2 or 3 Drops Green Food Coloring
Mix the Cherry dipping sauce with water, thoroughly enough to thin down the sauce into a gooey consistency. Add food coloring. Stir again, and let the sauce sit, preferably in a fridge. When needed, take it out and spoon it onto areas where 'gore' effect blood is needed. The blood will drip in glops & globs, but doesn't puddle out like watery blood does.

Buckets o' Blood

  • 1 Liter Corn Syrup
  • 5 Liters Water
  • 2 or 3 Tablespoons Red Food Coloring
  • 1/2 Teaspoon Green Food Coloring (optional)
  • A slosh of milk

Get a large pail to mix this all together. If you do not like the consistency you can either thin it with more water, or thicken it with sugar or corn syrup. The exact amount of food coloring you require will depend on the brand you buy, so you may need to play around with the measurements. If you make it too dark, just add more water again. Adding some milk will reduce the translucent of the mixture (real blood isn't see-through, but if you want clear blood, leave the milk out of the recipe). Don't add too much milk or the blood will look pink!

The final product should splash like water, but be slightly shinier, and not soak into cloth quite the same way water does, leaving more of it on the outside of clothes so they look suitably bloodied. NOTE: This will stain clothing, so don't get it on anything important.

Buckets o' Blood 2

This is great for the 'hands-on' type of blood, and (from what I hear) also works well in bath-tub sized proportions.

  • 1 package plain gelatin or 1 package red colored Jello
  • 2 bottle red food coloring (especially if using plain gelatin)
  • 1 tbsp green food coloring
  • 1 - 5 gallons of water (depending on desired consistency)

Directions are simple: Follow the instructions on the side of the jello package, but double or quadruple the amount of water needed, and don't add any sugar. Doubling the water gives you a very slimy, gloppy jello which doesn't look a lot like blood, but can be fun to get kids to stick their hands into at Halloween parties. If you use 5 gallons of water, you're going to have quite a thin runny blood, great for pouring over bloodied bodies in bathtubs or splashing on walls (especially if you can hose down the walls after - I wouldn't recommend this in your living room or parent's bedroom). You can play around with the recipe to get the desired consistency - gelatin is reasonably cheap and available in almost any grocery store.

Games
   
 


Eyeball Relay - Set the kids up in teams of two.  One takes a peeled, hard-boiled egg and races it to the other person, and the other person races it back.

Mummy Wrap - Kids wrap each other like a mummy; prizes go the best mummy, quickest, etc.
 

Creepy Parts Boxes:

  • Teeth - Unpopped Popcorn
  • Bones - Chicken Bones
  • Eyes - Peeled Grapes or Olives
  • Brains - Tofu (cut in rounded shape like the brain)
  • Fingers - Cheese Sticks
  • Hair - Corn Silk, Doll Hair, Pet Hair, or you can save your hair from your haircut prior to Halloween!
  • Liver - Half or a Canned Peach
  • Intestines - Wet, Cold Spaghetti
  • Ears - Dried Apricots
  • Skin - Oil pieces of a flour tortilla to feel like skin.
  • Hand - Fill a latex glove with water, and drape it over a bowl to freeze. Before the party, bury the frozen "hand" in a box of dirt, sand or rice.
Recipes

Bloody Witches Fingers - Chicken Strips with Ketchup
Ghost Cookies - Dip Nutter Butter cookies in melted white chocolate. Add two chocolate chips for eyes.
Creepy Spiders - Take top off Oreo. Lay cut red vines across Oreo filling (sticking out sides). Put Oreo top back on, and add red hots for eyes.
Y
ucky Punch - Make Kool-Aid punch and float black plastic spiders on top or freeze spiders in ice cubes.

Plates, Cups, Invitations, Etc.

We have many different goodies to help you set the perfect Halloween table!  Here are a few:
   
     
     
 

 
  
   
 
   
 

 
 

Goodie Bags

We have LOTS of goodie bag items!  And, we're always adding more.