Okay, This is the party that made Halloween the kids favorite holiday. It is one of my all time favorites.
Please remember that even though you may have a different theme than the year before, the trick is to design your party to be added upon the year before rather than replacing what you have. If you don’t, you will quickly run out of storage space. Using what you already have will make each year more outrageously decorated and adding to the fun.
Like the Grave Digger Party, we will start with an outline and then discuss each segment in order to make this your best party ever.
1. Theme: After discussing it with the grand kids it was decided we needed to do a witch theme party. It was an easy decision because I had just finished making a cauldron and the kids were excited to build a party around that. so the Witch Theme was born.
2. Invitations: I like to build it up to be a great event they are coming to and so a cute and fun invitation is very important to me. Not only because it is just plain cool, but it lets each person invited know they are special and it really gets them excited for the day to come.
A cute card is really not hard to do. There is so much free content on the internet, you can just find pictures and drop type on it. Just search for such things as Creepy Forest pictures, or Scary Witches etc.
This is one that I came up with.
I used a song that I had learned in my youth and built upon it. I hope it gives you some ideas.
I took it one step further and a few weeks before I sent out the invitations, I made sure that my grand kids knew the song. I would sing it often. Mostly they just stared at me realizing Grandpa had really lost it. But they got to know the song.
The idea was that when they read their invitation they would know it was the song I had been singing and then when they opened the card, “BAM” they get hit with the scary witch. Corny and Cheesy? Yes, but I had fun anyway.
You can find this song online. There are several different versions of it, but the Title of it is “There’s no such thing as a Witch.” Or “When you’re all alone in the country”.
3. Decorations: If you did the Grave Digger Party and you built a cemetery, Use the cemetery as your outdoor decorations and your house as the witches cottage.
If you don’t have a cemetery, it is not important. It just adds to the creepiness having the kids go through a cemetery to get to the witches house.
I decorated the porch to be creepy. with skeletons waiting to greet your guests. More like a dungeon setting
I couldn’t get permission from my wife to build a scary door so I made this door out of thin insulating foam and it is velcroed to the existing door which worked out even better.
It is light, and easy to put up and easy to store.
Look at the tutorial. for the witches door. Dungeon Door
I wanted to have a witches corner at Halloween and so I built this Cauldron, (see tutorial). Added an apothecary, which consisted of looking for any old bottles, watching for Hobby Lobby 50% off glassware sales, etc. Some of my favorite bottles I found on a 80% close out sale at Hobby Lobby and I always check out Savers or any Thrift Store to see if anything jumps out at me. I make them look old as shown on Tutorial,(aging bottles) and print out some free labels found online. You can customize your own free labels by using my free printable labels also.
Find an old shelf to display them on or just set them on a table with candles and a skull.
I also have several apothecary cabinets and spell book holders you can find in my store. Be sure to check them out.
Add a Spell book, Broom, anything that would help make your room look like a witch lived there. We found pictures on the internet and replaced the pictures in our home with creepy witch pictures.
4. Food: With our family Halloween party we always have a small dinner. I am serious about the dinner being small. Putting together a whole party with all the decorations etc. is too much work to also have to worry about a huge dinner that the kids most likely won’t eat much of anyway. There are way too many things going on for them to worry about sitting down and eating much. There is nothing more discouraging to spend grundles of time fixing a big meal and when you finally get everyone sat down for a wonderful meal, you blink and the kids are all gone. Be sure to read this blog post concerning this very thing. Hopefully this will give you some ideas and thoughts on planning the meal that works for everyone.
We like to try to stick with the theme as much as possible and so we might have soup or chili served in cauldron bowls.
We have cauldron bowls in our store if you would like to check them out. We used the cauldron bowls for candy dishes as well. We didn’t have a larger cauldron to serve the dinner from but we do have a bunch of Dutch Ovens that worked great as serving pots. Also for a simple dinner recipe check out Spaghetti and Eyeballs in the recipe section. You know best what your guests would like to eat, I just want to give a few serving ideas.
Look in our recipe section for help with punch and treats. The black Witch’s Brew punch works great for this party. Any of the treats in the recipe section will work well for this party. Make sure you browse through the section for some fun ideas.
5. Activity: After dinner, the table is cleared and it is time to carve the pumpkins. We always have a large pumpkin patch and the kids already picked their pumpkin and watched it grow all summer. If buying pumpkins, ask the kids what they like. I made the mistake of assuming that the kids would think the bigger the better. I was surprised at how many liked the cute small pumpkins better. We usually buy a book of pumpkin patterns that comes with the carving utensils each year. We thought we would have a ton of carving tools by now, but put in the hands of a child, they break quite regularly. I like to have a bunch of small candles handy so the kids can see what their jack-o-lanterns look like all lit up. Make sure you have plenty of adults to help with this activity or it will take forever. If you have a lot of other activities, you might want to forgo the carving and just send the pumpkins home with them.
6. Games: Get the table all cleaned up from the pumpkin mess and it is time to bring out our traditional dunking for apples. We always use my grandmothers antique washing tub, but we found that stores like Target usually have a large bucket that can be used. We found one that we love that says poison on it and it is quite large to use for the dunking. If you don’t like the floaties after a few of the kids have their turns, you can always do the donuts hanging from a string.
We next play the straw game.
Instructions are found in the “Grave Digger Party” ideas section of this site along with a free printable page for the kids to color and cut out. After the straw game we play two more games. The first one I purchased a couple bags of bugs from the $1.00 store and then at about 10 feet or so we have the kids line up and pitch bugs into the cauldron to see how many they can get in to complete the witches special potion. If they make all of them in then they will be turned into a toad. I can’t verify that one as none of my grand kids ever got all of them in so something was always missing from the ingredients.
The last game, we purchased from the dollar store some party hats and party plates. glued them together and painted them black, making great witch hats. The hat buckles were just tin foil cut out and glued on. We then painted a board orange. wrapped lights around the board, bought necklace glow rings also at the dollar store and played “Pitch for the Witch”. We turned out the lights except for the colored ones around the board and used the glow rings to play ring toss. The kids loved playing this game in the dark. Notice that I put this up on a table. This isn’t necessary at all, I just found that I didn’t have to bend over as often picking up rings. I’m getting very lazy and old.
7: Story: After the games it is time to get everyone to settle down a bit and have a nice scary witch story. I like the one that is in our story section called ElsBeth, followed by “A Witch’s Chalice” or you can do a poem reading of the “Night Before Halloween” also found in the story section. or check out the short story in the story section titled “The Last Ride” by Paul Melniczek. If you have extremely young children they will enjoy a nice kids story. One that we like is “Miss Fiona’s Stupendous Pumpkin Pies” by Mark Kimball Moulton.
So you can see that there are many story options to choose from. I hope you enjoy the stories and poems we have in our story section.
8: Candy: I always try and find a creative way for the kids to get their candy. At the Grave Digger Party they had to dig up their own coffins in the cemetery which were filled with their candy. The Carnival Party they had to win their candy playing the carnival games.
This party we had one of the adults dress up as a witch and come and make a special brew. we had their candy in ziplock bags placed inside the cauldron.
At the bottom of the cauldron we had a pot with a screen over it. We had placed some dry ice in the pot just prior to having the kids come in to visit the witch. We then placed the ziplock bags of candy around the perimeter of the cauldron on top of the screen. We had the kids sit far enough back on the floor so that they weren’t able to see into the cauldron. The witch talked to the kids in her screechy witch voice and as she added her special ingredients, (a picture of hot or warm water poured over the dry ice) the fog generated and poured out over the edges. The kids had to one at a time approach the witch and reach into the cauldron to retrieve a bag of candy. They were very apprehensive to reach into the fog filled pot not knowing what they would find.
(I didn’t feel that the fog from the dry ice reached high enough for my taste and so I used a dollar store battery operated hand fan and placed it on the bottom of the cauldron. That worked much better stirring up the fog. Next time we do this I am going to use a small fog machine for creating the fog in the cauldron. It will be a little expense but much less messy and create much more fog.)
I have several members of my family that are vegan. There is a ton of name brand candy out there that is vegan. A few examples are Starburst, Swedish Fish, SweeTarts, Air Heads, Twizzlers, Zotz, Nerds, Sour Patch Kids, Smarties, Skittles, Jolly Ranchers, Laffy Taffy just to name a few. The adults know that all the candy we buy will be vegan and so we don’t need to advertise the fact, so we only buy the vegan stuff and everyone then can have the same thing without anyone feeling left out and it doesn’t matter who pulls out what bag out of the cauldron.
It is loads of fun and the kids love daring each other to reach into the boiling pot, especially with a teasing witch to scare them when they stick their hand into the smoke filled cauldron.
Of course I think it goes without saying that you want to have some sort of creepy music going on in the background throughout the party. It really sets the ambiance for the party. You will find that my favorite word concerning Halloween is “ambiance”. My wife laughes at me every time I use it. But Hey! That is exactly what we are trying to create, and as much of it as possible.
All in all, this is one crazy fun party. Now send them home so you can get some sleep and worry about cleaning up tomorrow.