Halloween Hot Spots
It's that time of year again when we challenge you to put on a Halloween Hot Spot in your neighborhood! Not sure what that is?
Most Canadians participate in Halloween either by having a party, decorating their yards, or by handing out candy. We can be encouraged to know that this is one evening in the year where adults and kids both enjoy hanging out together, so let’s take advantage of the opportunity.
We want to challenge you, our church family, to organize a Halloween Hot Spot, where you can dress up, reach out and meet your neighbors. Think about it—who wouldn’t want to find themselves being offered a relational, safe and relaxing environment with a hot drink while walking around their neighborhood on a cold night?
Let us start by saying, you can do this! Yes, you can! Just keep it simple. As a church, we have put together a practical list of DIY (Do It Yourself) ideas on how to create this welcoming and experiential opportunity. You have so many people dropping by on this one night, why not use it in the most positive way possible! Gather your family, band with your Life Group, have your youth small group work together, get your neighbors involved, and plan the evening.
How can you get your neighbors to come to your Halloween Hot Spot?
- Put a sign on the curb or front lawn welcoming families to stop by and warm up. Let them know there are activities for the kids (if you decide to do that).
- Greet families at the end of the sidewalk who may not be sure what is going on.
- Work together with neighbors you already know and make it a block party. Leaflet the neighborhood a few days prior and direct people to your set-up. Put signs on the doors of the homes that are working together saying their candy can be found down the road at (Your address here).
Serve something. Serve anything. Serve something warm! Candy for the kids, hot chocolate for all; something for the parents like coffee, apple cider, cookies—anything to draw them in and spark conversations. Here are some things to make serving easier:
- Get paper to-go cups and lids for the drinks
- Put out a few cooking pots of different refreshments with serving spoons, if you have coffee urns, coffee makers and tea kettles, use them too!
Let’s STEP IT UP A NOTCH and create a lasting first impression. Here’s a small list of our ideas:
- Bring a stereo outside and play some music
- Have carnival games for kids to participate in (Pinterest is a wonderful resource with easy ideas). Some quick ideas to start you off:
- Bobbing for apples, bean bag toss, ladder ball, ping pong, ball/ring toss (all for extra candy)
- Add lights to make a bright, welcoming area. If you have scary trees, maybe move to the sidewalk, people may be cautious if you have scary trees.
- Put out a table with a tablecloth
- Provide seating. Halloween is something the whole family participates in, regardless of age, and depending on who it is, they might be thankful for a place to rest
- Wear name tags so your neighbors can better remember your names
- Make a sign with the hashtag #[Your-Street-Name]HotSpot (eg. #HuntingdonHotSpot) to post the pictures you take during the evening. This way your visitors have a way to connect back with you on social media. But you can also show the church family what went on at your place, by adding #HalloweenHotSpots to your social media posts too!