Four Fun Halloween Alternatives for Kids

Best Halloween Ideas

Halloween Alternatives for Kids

Have you been looking for some different Halloween alternatives? While I love celebrating Halloween, I do think there is more to the holiday than going trick or treating. To me, part of the fun has been dressing up in costumes and going to different Halloween events with my kids. We usually do some trick or treating, mind you, but we don’t spend the entire time going door to door. For one, I really don’t think it’s healthy for my kids to get THAT much candy. At the end of the day, my husband and I will be the ones eating most of the candy, if we don’t just throw it away.  That seems a bit sad when you think about it since Halloween candy isn’t exactly cheap.

What I found is that most communities have a wide variety of Halloween alternatives. They have everything ranging from fall festivals to kid safe parties sponsored by local organizations. Of course, finding the right event depends mostly on the age of your children. I try finding things for my children that are very kid friendly, but I know my husband’s younger siblings that still live at home love going to parties and campouts the weekend before Halloween. Below, I went over some of my favorite Halloween alternatives that I have seen myself or heard about from others parents/relatives.

Halloween Alternatives: Fall Festivals

If there is one thing I love about October – it’s fall festivals! Quite a few communities have fall festivals designed to be Halloween alternatives happening around or on Halloween.  At these festivals, children can go in costume or without, depending on the wishes of the parent.  What is different about these festivals is that children typically do not trick or treat. Instead, they take part in a variety of carnival games, ride amusement park rides, and take part in fall themed activities. One of my oldest daughter’s favorite activities is going on hay rides during these festivals. Children love going on tours and playing in the hay. I know in our community, they go on a little country tour that lasts anywhere from half an hour to an hour. I know one year the tour stopped and the kids were able to pick apples on some of the trees!

Most of these festivals also have corn mazes. Just make sure to be careful since there has been stories of some families getting lost in the mazes if the farmers didn’t plan out the maze very well.  In most communities, however, they are very clearly marked and designed to be fun for the entire family.  While some of these festivals can be a bit expensive, I have found that my children absolutely LOVE going to one of these festivals after an hour of trick or treating.

Halloween Alternatives: Decorating Pumpkins

For families who are hoping to be a bit closer to home on Halloween night, you may have fun decorating and carving pumpkins. When my youngest daughter was a still a baby, this was one of our preferred Halloween alternatives since we were able to stay close to home. My daughter loved being able to decorate pumpkins with her friends. Since they were small, the kids usually painted pumpkins. Now, with Daddy’s help, they use pumpkin carving kits to make jack o lanterns. If you have very young children, I recommend doing this and having the children help with trick or treaters. They will absolutely love it and is not very expensive!

Halloween Alternatives: Donation Drive

I have to say this was one of the neatest ideas that I saw for the first time last year. Our local food bank was having a canned food drive where instead of asking for candy, older kids asked for donations or canned food. They collected a lot of food and it helped others in the community. One of our neighbors is actually planning on having a donation drive with his friends in hopes of collecting money to help provide clean water to villages in Africa. I thought this was a pretty neat when it comes to Halloween alternatives and am hoping to do this when my girls get a bit older!

Halloween Alternatives: Camping

While I have never done it myself, my sister in law considers this one of her favorite Halloween alternatives. Rather than dress up in costumes or play tricks during Halloween, my sister goes with her youth group on a camping trip to one of the local camp grounds. If Halloween does not fall on a weekend, they usually do this the weekend before Halloween.  Anyways, instead of doing the traditional Halloween activities, they set up camp and tell ghost stories. This is perfect for teenagers and keeps them out of trouble! During the day, however, they do traditional camping activities, such as fishing and doing woodsy crafts. I couldn’t imagine sending a small child to one of these camps, but it seems perfect for children over the age of ten as long as there is a responsible adult around!

If something like this isn’t going on in your community, you can always have your own Halloween camp. Unlike the normal camps, you can just set up some tents in your backyard or in your basement. Just make sure to use candles or flashlights instead of a campfire if you live in a city! While it may be spooky, kids are sure to love telling age appropriate ghost stories and doing fun Halloween activities such as pumpkin carving and other Halloween craft projects!

Halloween Alternatives: Having Fun

No matter what you decide to do on Halloween night, just remember to have fun! To me, the most important thing about Halloween is spending time with my children. I know I had many fond memories of Halloween as a child and I really hope my children remember some of the fun activities we did together as a family. To learn about all the different activities going on in your community, make sure to check your local newspaper and city web pages! Even if you do go trick or treating, it doesn’t hurt to do some of these fun Halloween events!

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