DIY Trick-or-Treat Station to Delight Your Kids
For neighborhoods everywhere, Halloween means that it’s time for trick-or-treating. You can certainly take part in the big night in a traditional way by placing a handful of goodies in each little witch or goblin’s treat bag. Or, if you want to do something a little different this year, create a DIY trick-or-treat station with some help from Pottery Barn Kids. Your station can be as simple or as elaborate as you like, but every kid will agree: this is an exciting twist for a favorite fall holiday.
What is a trick-or-treat station
In order to make your own trick-or-treat station, it helps to get a better idea about what it really is. In essence, it’s a candy and treat bar set up in front of your home, in your driveway or on your front porch. Instead of ringing your doorbell, kids can stop by and grab some goodies from the station before moving on to the next house. This is a great option if you won’t be home to pass out treats or if you’re trick-or-treating with your own little ones around the neighborhood. Of course, if you’re home, it’s a fun way to take your Halloween participation to the next level. You can even dress up and host a fun Halloween-themed game or two in your yard.
Start with the basics
Before you get to the fun of decorating, start by choosing a place to set up. Make sure it’s clean, safe, well-lit, away from the road and easy to access. Next, you need a sturdy table. Be sure it has enough surface space for all of your treats. You may also use a small bookshelf or anything else with a flat surface. Consider adding a few chairs or benches to give parents and guardians a place to rest while the kids take a look at your decorations and select their goodies.
Choose your treats
Now for the exciting part: picking your treats. This is your opportunity to let your imagination run wild. You can opt for a theme, such as types of chocolate, fruit flavors or candy from your childhood. If you’re not sure what to pick, keep these tips in mind:
- Try to choose a wide variety of treats. The more options, the more fun the kids will have choosing.
- Consider alternatives for kids with allergies or kids who cannot have sugar.
- Try adding some non-food treats such as stickers, small toys, bubbles, plastic spider rings or pencils. Fruit snacks, granola bars and small bags of chips, pretzels, cookies or crackers make good options, too.
- Serve drinks. Low-sugar juice boxes are great for the kids, while soda and water can revive parched grownups. These especially come in handy in warmer climates. Separate and label each item to make the selection process easier.
Decorate, decorate, decorate
A table full of candy and other treats is definitely appealing, but now is the time to really get into the spirit of the holiday. Go all out with your Halloween decor. Drape the table with black velvet, and add spider-webs and other creepy creatures. Light the path to your station with jack-o’-lanterns. Make things smoky and extra ghoulish with dry ice or a fog machine. You can also get creative with the types of containers you use to serve your treats. Instead of bowls or jars, use plastic pumpkins, skulls or witches’ cauldrons. Give your station a name, such as “Haunted House” or “Ghostly Grab,” and get your own kids involved in making a sign for your station, too. Set up some flameless, battery-operated candles for an even spookier ambience.
Be ready for Halloween
Consider letting your neighbors know about your Halloween station at least a week before the date. You may even want to send out invitations. Parents who cannot accompany their children up and down each street may see visiting your station as a great alternative. Let them know if you plan to have non-food treats. Make sure you have everything set up about half an hour before trick-or-treaters start showing up, and be mindful of the temperature. In some places, it’s still pretty warm in October, and you don’t want your chocolate to melt. Light your jack-o’-lanterns, add balloons to your mailbox to attract attention and be sure you have your sign in place. If you plan to wear a Halloween costume, make sure you have it on so you can playfully startle young visitors.