Halloween may be all about cute costumes and trick-or-treating for younger kids, but teens can handle some horror on the creepy holiday. Socially, older teenagers are spending more time with friends who share the same interest, so involve your own teen in the spooky party planning to ensure a theme that will keep the kids engaged -- and out of trouble -- all night.
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Horror Movie Marathon
Many teens need nothing more than a trip to the video store to put together a Halloween party their friends will love. While any assortment of horror movies will keep teens entertained, films that fit a theme work best when developing a cohesive party theme. Chose a movie with plenty of sequels, such as the "Scream" or "Saw" film franchises, or introduce teens to an older era of films, such as the horror B-movies from the 1950s or Wes Craven films of the 1980s. Encourage kids to come in a costume inspired by the movie theme to add an extra level of excitement to the party.
Harmless Prank Party
For decades, the phrase "trick-or-treat" was more literal than it is today, with kids playing jokes on the houses that didn't hand out candy. For teens who regularly pull practical jokes on one another, a prank party that honours the age-old tradition is in order. Encourage all invited guests to research some of the best old pranks from decades gone by, or to invent a few of their own. Establish a few guidelines for the pranksters to follow, such as banning all jokes that cause harm or damage property. Check with homeowners ahead of time if the teens feel the need to pull a few outdoor pranks, such as toilet-papering someone's house -- and remind the teens that they are responsible for any cleanup needed the next day.
Haunted Houses Road Trip Party
It's no secret that many teens enjoy being terrified on Halloween and a road trip party to a handful of haunted houses will definitely get the job done. However, tickets for professionally run haunted houses can get expensive and are likely to be extremely busy on Halloween night. Rather than waste a lot of needless time and money, encourage teens to create their own haunted house road trip in the style of a progressive dinner party. Ask each teen guest to create a micro-haunted house experience in their own home. Each guest should also fix a small, spooky snack. On Halloween night, send the kids from house to house, staging the final experience at the host's house. Once their road trip is over, let the teens decide whose haunted house was best over pizza and soda.
Part of what makes Halloween a favourite with kids is all the candy, but most teens find the trick-or-treating experience too childish. Rather than simply serving sweets as a party treat, throw a candy-making party for teens who like to experiment in the kitchen. Invest in a candy thermometer, creepy candy moulds an assortment of ingredients to increase the number of candy types the teens can try their hand at creating. Also have plenty of candy recipes on hand for the teens to choose from, such as saltwater taffy, old-fashioned hard candy and chocolates.