Halloween isn’t just for little kids who go trick or treating. There are loads of things to do during this spooky section of the fall season that all ages can enjoy.
October is a great time of year because it’s Halloween time and fall time. So it’s completely up to you how you celebrate this month—whether decide to do spookier, Halloween themed activities, or just fall time ones.
Here are 13 things to do this October:
- Have a Halloween Party
- Have a Scary Movie Night
- Start Some Fall Time Baking
- Go to a Haunted House or Corn Maze
- Carve Pumpkins
- Do Some Crafts
- Participate in Your Community
- Trunk or Treat with Friends
- Play Games
- Make Your Own Haunted House
- Have a Campfire and Tell Each Other Scary Stories
- Read Scary Books
- Listen to Spooky Podcasts
There are tons of fun, festive activities you can do in October, or you can search events near you on
1. Have a Halloween Party
Include a Costume Contest
Costume contests are a great event to include in any Halloween party. A costume contest is a great idea too because it gives those who have grown out of their trick or treat years a chance to dress up for Halloween too. Here are some things you can do to successfully hold a Halloween costume contest.
Decide what the prize will be.
Halloween costume category ideas:
- best group costume
- scariest costume
- funniest costume
- most creative
- most original
Make the invites!
Like any event, you’ll want to invite your guests. You can quickly invite everyone you know by making a Facebook event. You can also put up flyers or send out invites in the mail. You can make your spooky invites yourself the traditional way, with glue and paper, or you can design and print them on free websites like Canva and Adobe Spark. If you don’t want to pay for printing out a bunch of invites, but you still want to design something fun, you can also send out your spooktacular design via email.
Decide what the rules will be.
If your costume contest is going to need a set of rules, it’s best to outline them as early as possible so that people can appropriately plan their costumes ahead of time.
Examples of costume contest rules:
- Maybe it’s a family party and costumes need to be appropriate, or not too gruesome
- Maybe it’s a themed party and costumes need to be on theme
- You can have rules about whether you allow group contestants
Choose the judges.
Every contest needs judges to decide the end results. Before you can have the contest you’ll need to decide who these judges will be.
If you don’t want to have the outcome of your contest depend on the decision of one or a few people, you can make everyone the judge and provide a place for guests to enter their own votes for who should win.
Figure out how you’ll judge.
After you decide who will judge you have to decide how they’ll judge. They’ll need to know what things to look for in deciding who should win.
How to judge a costume contest:
- Best group costumes
Board games don’t have to be Halloween themed in order to be a great group activity for a party. October is a cold month, making things like board games a great thing to do when you and your guests want to stay indoors.
The food for your Halloween party is one of the things you can get super creative about. For instance, you can put labels on the food to give them spooky names. Punch then becomes a witch’s cauldron, grapes become spider eggs, and deviled eggs become eyeballs.
Choose a beverage
There are an endless variety of punches for you to choose from. Below are some websites with witchy Halloween brews to quench your ghoulish guest’s thirst:
- 40 Best Halloween Punch Recipes to Serve at Your Costume Party
- 6 Hauntingly Delicious Halloween Party Punches
Every party needs some great food to keep everybody full and happy. There are the staple party foods like chips, pretzels, and dip. But you can also make your own little appetizers, or your own party mix, to add some Halloween creativity to your food table.
- 43 Halloween Appetizers to Serve at Your Costume Party
- 40 Easy Halloween Appetizers to Get the Party Startled
Lots of music streaming services have a Halloween themed playlist you can use.
- HALLOWEEN PLAYLIST 2019 from Spotify
- Halloween Music from Google Play Music
- Halloween Sound Effects from Google Play Music
- Halloween Playlist from Apple Music
- Halloween Party from Apple Music
- The Ultimate Halloween Party Playlist from Amazon Music
- Halloween Playlist from Amazon Music
2. Have a Scary Movie Night
Have a movie night with friends, host a drive in movie, or if it’s not too cold you can have an outdoor movie night on the lawn. You’ll need to plan some movie worthy snacks, like popcorn, soda, candy, and other treats.
Then you’ll need to plan the movie watching space, gathering all the cozy blankets, pillows, and flashlights your guests will need to be comfortable during the duration of the movie. You could even make a fort for you all to hide out in while you watch some scarier movie choices.
Then you’ll need to pick your movie.
Classic Halloween Movies
Experience some older but great Halloween movies this season.
- Hocus Pocus
- The Nightmare before Christmas
- Monster House
Halloween Movie Snacks
- popcorn, seasoned sweet or salty
- veggie trays
- make your own monster mash mix
3. Start Some Fall Time Baking
You can have a night of baking or cooking together with friends! Gather your favorite people around you, listen to your favorite music, turn on a show, converse, or play games all while making yummy fall time foods and desserts.
Check out these 50 Easy Fall Baking Recipes from Taste of Home for some ideas of what you could bake. But here are some other fall staples you could look into making with some friends:
- Maple donuts. Everyone can help form the donuts out of the dough.
- Candy apples. This is a great group activity because you can have all the decorating options out on a table and everyone can make up their own candy apples.
- Pumpkin bread. Slices of this seasonal bread goes great with warm cups of cocoa or apple cider.
- Apple cider. If you live near an apple orchard or an apple cider press you can make a night of picking apples and watching them get pressed into freshly made apple cider.
- Sticky buns. A warm, gooey classic to chunk out on in the cold months.
4. Go to a Haunted House or Corn Maze
There are lots of outdoor Halloween activities you can do in October. There are scary corn mazes and regular ones, hayrides, and haunted houses.
5. Carve Pumpkins
Jack-o-lanterns can be really fun, no matter how old you are.
- Remember to be safe
- Use templates
- Make it a competition
- Use sharpie to draw your design first
- box cutters
- Use a pumpkin carving kit
- use a tarp!
6. Do Some Crafts
This is an especially great activity to do when you have little kids to occupy. Happiness is Homemade has some great craft ideas to choose from.
7. Participate in Your Community
You can volunteer! Or start a cause or charity. This time of year is a great time to use Halloween fun as an opportunity to fundraise, or do a coat drive.
8. Trunk or Treat with Friends
Just because you’re not 8 years old anymore, that doesn’t mean you can’t have your own trunk or treat with friends. Everyone can decorate the trunks of their car as you all go around the parking lot getting candy and being with those you care about.
9. Play Games
Before it gets too cold out you can all get outside and play some fun spooky games. There are some classic games you can play with friends that can really get you in the eerie Halloween spirit.
- Sardines. It’s like hide and seek turned inside out. One person hides and it’s everyone else’s job to find them. But instead of ratting out the hiding person, you join them! Before you know it, the hiding spot is spilling over with people.
- Hide and seek.
- Halloween game ideas for kids
- Halloween game ideas for kids and adults
10. Make Your Own Haunted House
Who needs to spend money on expensive tickets when you can haunt your own house!
- Decide where you’re going to have it, the porch, inside the house, in the basement
- Use tarps to make the walls
- Cover everything in cobwebs
- Save money by making your own decorations and scary characters
11. Have a Campfire and Tell Each Other Scary Stories
Here’s a list of some books where you can find uncomfortable tales to tell in the dark.
- Books of Blood by Clive Barker
- Everything’s Eventual: 14 Dark Tales by Stephen King
- Alone with the Horrors by Ramsey Campbell
- The Tales of Edgar Allan Poe
- Scary Stories to Tell in the Dark by Alvin Schwartz
12. Read Scary Books
- Frankenstein by Mary Shelley
- The Legend of Sleepy Hollow by Washington Irving
- Suspicious Minds by Gwenda Bond, is a prequel to the Stranger Things TV show on Netflix
- The Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde by Robert Louis Stevenson
- The Southern Reach Trilogy by Jeff VanderMeer, for when you need a series to last you a little longer
13. Listen to Spooky Podcasts
- Lore by Aaron Mahnke
- Cabinet of Curiosities by Aaron Mahnke
- Listen with the Lights On by WAMC
- Pretty Scary by Unpops Podcast Network
It’s always fun to do seasonal things and get into the spirit of the season, whether that means doing scary stuff like haunted houses, or just festive fall time things like baking. And if payday just isn’t landing on the right day this October, you can always take out a convenient Payday Loan to tide you over.
Plan your Halloween festivities this year, “Start Planning Your Halloween Festivities Today.”
Keep you and your kids safe this Halloween with these tips, “5 Important Halloween Safety Tips.”
Stay on budget this year with these Halloween budgeting tips, “Saving Money on Halloween.”
Get inspired for your Halloween costume, “8 Cheap Halloween Costume Ideas on a Budget.”