The month of goblins and ghouls is upon us! Just because you live in an apartment complex certainly does not mean you are unable to enjoy all that Halloween has to offer. With a little planning (and enlisting your neighbours), you can create a safe, exciting and fun environment that everyone can enjoy.
So what are you waiting for? Put on your favourite costume and start getting spooky!
Trick-or-Treat! Living in an apartment complex means you will need to be a bit more creative when it comes to trick-or-treating. If you live in a large building, you may want to allow the children who live in the complex to go door-to-door in the building itself.
Establish a time frame for when trick-or-treating will be allowed (some people might need to go to bed early, so be sure to respect the needs of everyone). For the people who are able to participate, ask them to put a decoration or sign on their apartment door indicating that they are open to receiving trick-or-treaters.
An alternative is to set up in the lobby as a group and allow neighbourhood children to come in to the building for their pre-packaged, peanut-free candy acquisitions! Put up a sign in your building asking for suggestions/volunteers and provide your contact information.
Remember, no matter how safe your apartment building may be, always supervise young children on their door-to-door candy mission.
Haunted Apartment: Allow everyone to join in when it comes to decorating the common areas of the building. Even better, why not make a haunted house in your lobby? It is a fantastic way to get to know your neighbours and “build” something together that you can all share. Post a sign-up sheet in the lobby or on your building’s Facebook page so tenants can let each other know what type of decorations they will be able to bring.
Got a rental office? Here are some tips on how to transform leasing space into the ultimate haunted mansion from ehow.com:
• Cover the windows and walls with black curtains or black fabric. This is to block out any light in the apartment. The darkness will create that spooky feeling that every haunted house needs.
• Create a maze in using cardboard boxes, shelves and other standing furniture. Make the maze no wider than a standard doorway. This is a way to use the smaller space found in an apartment rather than a house. Cover the maze with black fabric and pass out very dim flashlights to those entering the haunted house. You want them to be able to see, just not very well. In your maze, cover up secret “doorways” with black fabric. This way, people dressed up as monsters, ghouls and other scary creatures can give the visitors quite a jolt.
• Spray mists of red liquid throughout the maze to give the illusion of blood. This adds an excellent “horror film” feel to your haunted house. Make sure to do this both on the walls and the floor so it is visible to guests.
• Place small mirrors and other smaller props throughout the maze. One way to have fun with the mirror is to write an “RIP” message in lipstick on the mirror. Place fake cobwebs, spiders and other props in the maze.
• Create one sign in the maze, which leads guests to a fake exit. When they go that way, you can have somebody jump out at them or another frightening surprise waiting for the guests.
• Play scary music and/or sounds throughout your haunted house apartment. You can find CDs for the occasion at many stores during the Halloween season.
Pumpkin Carving: A great idea that can involve the entire building is to have a pumpkin-carving contest. Bringing neighbours together for a spooky carving competition is a whacky way to help foster relationships among renters. You can form teams or simply let each apartment unit carve their own, preferably in a common area of the building that’s covered in newsprint or some form of recycled material to protect the floors. Prizes can be awarded for the pumpkins that receive the most votes. To get some extra mileage out of the whole affair, throw an event the following night where you line up all of the jack-o-lanterns in a row outside for all to admire.
Here are some ideas to suggest to your renters:
• Wallpaper print
• Property management logo
• Face of a management staff member
• Painted funny faces
• Expressions like “Trick or Treat” and “Booo”
• Angry Birds
Word to the wise: Safety always comes first. In other words, never allow children to carve pumpkins or handle knives without adult supervision.
Costumes Galore: Of course, one of the most enjoyable aspects of Halloween is being able to dress up. Before or after the trick-or-treating has commenced, have a costume contest with prizes for kids and adults. Many people spend hours (and days, and weeks) making their costumes, so it’s wildly amusing to watch them parade around and relish in rewards for creativity.
Ensuring everyone in the building is aware of the Halloween plans will create a smooth and fun night for all. Whatever your building decides to do, enjoy the festivities and HAPPY HALLOWEEN!
The RentSeeker.ca Team