13 Trick-or-Treat Alternatives To Get Your Spook On

grandmother with two kids in costumes playing with a pumpkin on Halloween

Halloween starts off the holiday season and is the perfect chance to have a great time with friends and family. However, like many other occasions this year, Covid-19 will unfortunately affect how we celebrate this event. If you live in a county with high risk levels, you may not want your children walking from door to door or trick-or-treating may even be prohibited.

But there’s no need to lose hope! If there’s one thing we’ve learned this year, it’s that we can always find new ways to turn canceled plans into something positive. In that spirit, we’ve collected some of the most wicked ways to celebrate Halloween without leaving your home!

1. Virtual Halloween Party

For a true Quarantine-O-Ween, what could be a better idea than throwing a virtual Halloween party? Chances are you’re an expert when it comes to video chatting by now and have impressed your colleagues or friends with funny backgrounds and exceptionally written evites in the past few months. Ask everyone to put on their costumes and have snacks ready for this virtual get-together.

A virtual Halloween party is a great opportunity to have a costume competition. You can rate costumes by creativity, humor, creepiness or even ask all your guests to put on costumes that are a bit outside of the box and have a guessing game around who or what everyone is dressed as. Your guests can write down their guesses on a piece of paper and the winner gets a gift basket full of candy sent to their house!

2. Halloween Crafting Night

Halloween crafts, hands cutting out a paper ghost with scissors

Your home is already full of carved pumpkins but your kids can’t resist a fun do-it-yourself project? Gather all your crafting supplies and create toilet paper mummies, ghost garlands or tissue box monsters! Crafting is a great way to take your mind off and as long as there’s candy at the center of your table, your kiddos will have a great time. You can store the prettiest crafts away to decorate with next Halloween or leave them out until Turkey Day comes around.

3. Tell Scary Stories

mother and daughter reading a book under a blanket with a flashlight and dog

What better night to build a fort, get dressed up, load up with delicious candy and tell each other scary stories? Turn off all the lights in the house and only have a flashlight in your pillow fort. Whoever holds the light gets to tell the spookiest story they can think of!

Instead of giving the story away, you can also turn this evening into a game night. Tell each other frightening riddles and let the rest of the party guess what happened. You can find plenty of “black stories” for free online or buy a card game that includes the riddle, clues and answer.

4. Backyard Pumpkin Hunt

If your kids love searching for Easter eggs in the backyard in the spring, they’ll love looking for Halloween candy in the fall too! Add some spooky decorations to your backyard like ghosts hanging from trees, ghoul statues hiding behind bushes or frightfully carved pumpkins to set the mood. You can hide Halloween candy, games and creepy masks or other costume accessories your kids will enjoy.

While they run through your ill-lighted yard in search of treats, fix yourself a delicious Halloween-themed cocktail, you deserve it!

5. Decorate Halloween Cookies

decorated Halloween sugar cookies, ghosts, cats, pumpkins and spidewebs

The only thing more fun than eating loads of candy, is making it yourself! Bake and decorate Halloween cookies with your kids or friends to lift everyone’s spirits. You can even turn this activity into a little competition and give out prizes at the end of the night for the most creative cookie, the most colorful one, the spookiest and so on.

If you live alone but won’t say no to baking on Halloween, invite your friends to a virtual bake-off. It doesn’t have to be cookies, you can also bake a Halloween-themed cake or cupcakes.

6. Halloween Piñata Party

Canceling plans is a bummer. By now, we may have gotten used to things not going our way but it can be disheartening, especially during the holidays. Luckily, we have just the right idea for you to celebrate Halloween and blow off some steam! Throw a Halloween piñata party this year — whether that’s for your kiddos, your family or your adult friends, we can all use a healthy way to overcome our frustration.

Have everyone dress up and serve delicious snacks. You can play games, tell stories or simply enjoy each other’s company before taking out the piñata. And once you’ve bashed the heck out of it, it’ll rain candy! What could possibly be better than that?

7. Pumpkin Carving Party

woman helping young girl to carve a pumpkin

I say Halloween, you say? Pumpkins! What would this holiday be without this fruit (yes, pumpkins are fruit)? You see them everywhere, as scented candles, in drinks, soups and of course on your friend’s Instagram as a beautiful centerpiece! Instead of trick-or-treating, get a variety of pumpkins and have a little carving party with your kids. Print out a few pumpkin stencils for inspiration and carve out funny, scary or pretty patterns to display at your front door.

If your kids are a bit too young to work with a knife, provide them with paint so they can still contribute to the pretty collection of customized pumpkins without hurting themselves. Pro-tip: Spray the finished masterpieces with petroleum jelly to make them last until Thanksgiving!

8. Halloween Movie Night

This is a fun alternative for all age groups. If you have kids at home, watch a few classics like Halloween Town or Casper. For adults, invite your closest friends or hang out with your partner while watching movies that give you the creeps.

Make sure to prepare a few bone-chilling movie snacks such as deviled eggs, caramel apple bites or cheese cubes on Halloween-themed picks. Serve them next to a smoky bowl of punch and make sure to check your closet for monsters before you go to bed!

9. Roast Ghost Marshmallows By The Fire

father and two daughters sitting by a bonfire in the forest roasting and eating marshmallows on sticks

If you have a backyard and a place to have a safe bonfire this is a great way to get your kids excited about a socially-distant Halloween. They can wear their costumes or snuggle up in a blanket, help you draw scary faces on marshmallows with edible food markers and will have a blast roasting these little ghosts over the fire.

Put on some ominous background music, dance around the fire on your broomsticks, tell pirate stories about sunken treasures or remember your favorite past Halloween.

10. Scary Game Night

Gather your most beloved board and card games for a scary game night! You may have a few games that give you goosebumps but any game night can be turned into a spooky one with the right decor, background music and everyone wearing their costume.

If you’re inviting a few of your close adult friends, Halloween is the perfect excuse to host a chilling murder mystery party. You can dress your part, share a delicious dinner and solve a make-believe crime all in one night!

11. Halloween Dance Party

Halloween dance party, kids in costumes blowing bubbles and cheering each other on

How about throwing a Halloween dance party? You can invite close family members and friends. Perhaps your kids are homeschooling with a few other kids in a “pandemic pod” and you feel safe inviting them and their close family to a party in your house. Create a playlist full of fun dance music, prep Halloween-themed party snacks and set up a wicked designated dance floor.

Dancing releases endorphins and is a scientifically proven way to feel good. So sing and dance your troubles away while twirling in your Halloween costume this year!

12. Trunk-or-Treat

You may not feel comfortable with your kids knocking on the entire neighborhood’s doors for candy (or perhaps your county doesn’t allow it this year) but you can always ask close family and friends to come together for a trunk-or-treat. The concept is simple yet enchanting and a great alternative to the classic trick-or-treating routine your kids would otherwise miss out on this year!

Invite a few friends and family members to dress up their car trunks and fill them with goodie bags. Have your kids help you with this, they can come up with a fun theme and get excited about the upcoming event. Then meet everyone in a designated space and have the kids walk from trunk to trunk, admiring the creative decor and collecting their yummy Halloween candy.

13. Haunted House at Home

front porch decorated for Halloween with ghosts, skeletons, spiders and pumpkins

If you have a backyard or basement, you can turn it into a haunted house. If your kids are easily scared, this is a great opportunity to create a setting that they won’t find too frightening. Ask an older family member like a sibling or grandparent to dress up for an interactive part or simply work with light effects to create a more-or-less spooky effect.

With a few spooky decor pieces, you can easily turn any room into a haunted house. Place plenty of skeletons by doorways or windows, hang ghosts from the ceiling and creepy lanterns across the room and play eerie music to set the mood. If you want to go all out, create a little maze or escape room scenario for the kids to solve.

Nobody is denying that trick-or-treating is one of the best parts of Halloween but safety comes first and we hope that one of these ideas inspires you to make this event a full success amidst the pandemic. Don’t forget to decorate your home for this holiday to get in a spooky mood — chrysanthemums and pumpkins are great decorations for your front porch, you could also craft an eerie Halloween wreath for your door using purple asters, a few fake spiders and webs or simply add a gorgeous orange bouquet of flowers to your dining table to celebrate.