Plan an eerie and exciting Halloween party for your little witch or warlock by following our Halloween party ideas! We’ve compiled some general party planning tips as well as great suggestions for Halloween decorations, food, and Halloween games that are sure to thrill all the ghoulies and ghosties at your party. (Are you a teacher throwing a Halloween party for your students? Check out our Halloween Classroom Party Ideas.)
Planning & Invitations
What do I need for the Halloween Party?
In addition to basic Halloween party supplies, like plates, cups, napkins, and decorations, you may want to consider purchasing, borrowing or renting the following items for your Halloween party:
- Kid-friendly Halloween movies such as Casper (PG), It’s the Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown (unrated), Monster House (PG), Pooh’s Heffalump Halloween Movie (G), Wallace & Gromit in The Curse of the Were-Rabbit (G) and Monsters, Inc. (G)
- Spooky Halloween music
- Fake cobwebs, plastic spiders, skeletons and bats
- A plastic cauldron filled with treats
- Carved Pumpkins
- Halloween Costumes
Halloween invitations can be very simple or elaborate; the only limit is your imagination! If you have the time to make your own invitations, here are a few ideas you can try:
- Ghost Invitation – Place a white handkerchief out on a table, and write the invitation information in a spiral around the edges, making sure to leave the center white. When done, wrap the handkerchief around a lollipop (written side out). Fasten with a ribbon or rubber band at the neck of the lollipop, and dot two eyes with a black felt tip marker. Send your ghost invitation in a padded envelope.
- Pumpkin Invitation – Punch a hole in the corner of a card-style invitation, and tie it with black or orange string to a mini pumpkin (available at most grocery stores). Hand-deliver each guest’s invitation.
- Candy Invitation – Hide card-style invitations in small jars filled with candy corn. (Pickle jars or small jelly jars work well.) Hand-deliver your invitations to each guest.
If you’d rather not make your own invitations, but still want a personalized touch, consider our Personalized Halloween Invitations, which include all the party details for you. (All Halloween invitations are available in September and October only.)
If you want to transform your party area into a haunted haven that will thrill and delight all of your guests, then try these Halloween decorations to create a spooky atmosphere:
- Create artificial mist! Fill buckets halfway with water, and add dry ice. There should be enough water to cover the dry ice, and the proportions should be 2 parts water to 1 part dry ice. Warmer water will create thicker smoke, but it will disappear quickly. Cooler water will create thinner smoke, but it will linger longer. Place the buckets around the party area, but make sure the children can’t get into them. Dry ice is dangerous when touched.
- Inflate a variety of white balloons with helium. Cover each balloon with a small white sheet or square cut from an old sheet, and draw eyes and a mouth on each with a black marker. Float the ghosts around the party area. For extra eeriness, insert a glow stick in each balloon before inflating.
- Cover the party food table with a black or orange tablecloth and a selection of scary items such as plastic bugs, rats, and skulls.
- Cover shoeboxes with brown or black construction paper, and line the inside of each with red felt. Lay plastic or rubber skeletons inside, and set the “coffins” around the party area.
- Make your own window coverings by cutting silhouettes of cats, bats, pumpkins, and spiders out of black construction paper or felt. Tape the cutouts to your window, and then cover the entire window with white paper or a sheet. Make sure the white covering fits the window exactly. Place a light source behind the window to make the scary silhouettes visible from the street.
- Purchase neon black lights, and place them in the party area. This will create an eerie glow and make all the white items in the room, like the mist and ghosts, really stand out.
You will want to prepare a Halloween party food list well before the party to make sure you have enough treats and snacks on hand. Supply simple foods that fit the theme or, if you have time, create some special treats your child’s friends will rave about! Here are some suggestions:
- Serve finger foods that come in Halloween colors, such as orange slices, Cheetos, baby carrots, cheddar cheese cubes, Ho-Hos, black licorice, and blackberries. Make fruit kabobs by alternating purple grapes and cantaloupe on wooden skewers.
- Use your favorite Halloween cookie cutters to cut soft sandwiches, such as peanut butter & jelly or tuna fish, into spooky shapes, like ghosts, bats, and pumpkins. You can also use mini cookie cutters to cut pumpkins out of orange cheese slices and ghosts and skulls out of white cheese slices to serve with Ritz crackers.
- Create spider treats by inserting eight pretzel sticks (four on each side) into the filling of Ritz peanut butter crackers. With a dab of peanut butter, set two raisin “eyes” on top. (To accommodate children with peanut allergies, make your own cracker sandwiches using plain or flavored cream cheese as the filling.)
- Wrap one half of cocktail sausages in thin strips of a four tortilla. Place a dab of ketchup on the other end to look like a toenail. Call these “monster toes.”
- Serve a spooky punch like Swamp Juice. Empty a 13-oz. package of Kool-Aid into a punch bowl. Add 1 cup sugar and 8 cups water, and stir until dissolved. Stir in 1 can frozen orange juice concentrate. Just before serving, add 4 cups ginger ale and 3 scoops orange sherbet. This will create a putrid green color that will look awful but taste delicious! Add small plastic spiders or raisins to serve as “bugs” for an extra creepy effect!
Creepy, Crawly Cupcake Recipe
For an extra special treat, make each guest a creepy, crawly cupcake! What you will need:
- 1 chocolate cupcake per guest
- Canned chocolate icing
- Chocolate sprinkles
- Red skittles
- Black string lace licorice
- Frost the cupcakes with chocolate icing.
- Roll the tops of the cupcakes in chocolate sprinkles to create a “hairy” look.
- Press two red skittles in the center of the cupcake to serve as eyes.
- Cut eight 4-inch pieces of licorice per cupcake for the legs. Bend each “leg” in half and crease. Push the end of each leg into the cupcake (four on each side).
Check out our other fun Halloween recipes:
Party Favor Ideas
Thank your guests for coming with fun Halloween favors such as:
- Plastic pumpkins filled with candy, spider rings, glow sticks, swirl pops, eye poppers, and bubbles
- Cowboy hats, firefighter helmets, princess headbands, or other hats and headbands.
- Complete Halloween Favor Sets (available September and October only) .
- Halloween personalized favors (available September and October only).
More Birthday Theme Ideas
Browse our list of over 140 themed party guides to find tips for your child’s next birthday! Each guide includes ideas for invitations, decorations, food, favors, games and more.
Games and Activities
Your guests try to toss bean bags into the monster’s mouth in this popular game.
Watch as your little monsters turn a guest into a mummy!
With simple craft supplies, your guests can create their own cat mask, collar, and tail.
Have your guests create pirate hats to wear during the party and take home as favors.
A game where children are encouraged to stomp around!
A classic Halloween favorite!
Test your guests’ speed and creativity with this timed contest.
Guests will love this chilling twist on the traditional cake walk.
Test the players’ teamwork as they try to untangle strands of yarn to get to their prizes.
Have your guests use their creativity to create masks of silly or spooky characters.
Send your guests out on a scavenger hunt to find as many witch hats as they can.
Your guests will love decorating our Printable Halloween Coloring Page.
Your guests will love running around during this late-night game of tag.
Try these yummy appetizers at your next birthday party or baby shower.