Why don’t Australians celebrate Halloween?! When I first moved to Sydney in 2007, I never knew that Halloween was almost non existent in Australia. When I asked a few friends if they were going trick-or-treating, one told me that there is no Halloween in Australia. Another said she hated Halloween, because she didn’t like the idea of kids getting too many lollies. And another didn’t like the idea of knocking on doors of strangers. Then one friend said: We could try walking around our suburb and see if there are a few houses that might be handing out lollies.
And so this is what we did in 2007. We dressed the kids in costumes, walked around 4 streets and got lollies from 5 houses. There were hardly any decorations in any of those 5 houses. It didn’t matter. The kids liked the idea of dressing up as a Princess or Dora the Explorer. Scary costumes weren’t readily available back then. Or maybe, being so new in the country, I just didn’t know where to get them.
So from then on, I dismissed the idea of Halloween in Australia. Until 2 years ago when a British friend invited my family over for a simple Halloween party. We let the kids dress up. That alone got them all excited. My friend prepared 2 games for the kids and served pizza. We walked to 3 houses for trick-or-treating. And that was it. It was simple but still so much fun for the kids.
The year after, this simple Halloween get together evolved into something slightly bigger. We invited more families into our little Halloween circle. And as the party got bigger, us moms naturally became more creative with games and food. Trick-or-treating seemed to go up by a big notch, because we managed to get lollies from 10 houses in a single street. The kids loved it!
Many kids came knocking on our door last year. So many that we ran out of lollies early. It was then that I realized that somehow more kids have become involved with Halloween in Australia. It is by no means at the level they do it in the U.S. yet. It is far from that. But there are sure signs that Halloween in Australia is getting more popular. And it seems that it’s here to stay… especially if retailers are in on it.
So if Halloween in Australia is here to stay, how would you get in the game? Here are some ideas.
We were lucky to get some cool Halloween decor from Spotlight. If you’re after last minute Halloween decorations, check out their Halloween range, because they are all so easy to hang and set up.
Kids will love this spooky Frankenstein door decor. The surprise holes in Frankenstein’s hands can give a fun twist to giving out lollies. This pack comes with ghost eyes and foot steps too.
The kids were so excited, that they wanted to ‘test’ Frankenstein’s hands. My son gave out the bag of lollies, while my daughter put on the witch costume from Spotlight to fully play the part.
If you have young kids, you might want to put non-scary (borderline cute) Halloween decor. Cute with a spooky theme to it, if that makes sense, like this bunting on the photo below. As a side note, how cool are those fake webs?
One of my favorites is this falling spider decor. It effectively created a terrifying impact, especially paired with those little rodents on the glass windows.
And how cute are these skeleton bags for trick-or-treating?! It’s double purpose, because it can be hung on trees as well.
With all this decor, you will surely have lots of little knocks on your door. These Halloween decorations aren’t limited to the front of your house though. Use them for decor inside your house or alfresco for a Halloween party too!
A Halloween Party
What if you’re not fully convinced about trick-or-treating just yet? Your kids will still love to dress up. Invite a few friends over and play some Halloween themed games and serve some Halloween treats!
Halloween Party Games
Here are some of the Halloween Party Games that we did last year…
- Make a mummy. The kids were divided into 2 teams. Each team assigned one person to be the ‘mummy’. They each got rolls of toilet paper. When the game started, the team members had to wrap the ‘mummy’ all over with toilet paper. Make sure to take photos of the end result.
- Apple bobbing game. Apples are put in a bowl filled with water. Each child takes turns trying to catch an apple and take them off the bowl.
- Donuts in ropes game. Tie donuts in string and hang them (we hung them on the clothes line). Let the kids race to eat their donut without touching it. You will have lots of laughs with this game, as the string circles around the kids who try to catch the donuts with their mouths.
Halloween Sweet Treats
What’s a Halloween party without sweet treats?! Here are some ideas.
- Spooky cupcakes. Pipe some green icing and put these spooky Halloween toppers, all from Spotlight.
- Worms in Dirt Dessert. This is so easy to do that the kids can make it on their own.
- Strawberry Ghosts. Make some chocolate dipped strawberries with white chocolate, then put chocolate chip eyes on them.
Decorating the house and trick-or-treating get kids excited. But even just inviting a few friends over for some Halloween games and sweet treats can be equally fun too. Halloween can be as small or as grand as you make them to be. The important thing is that it’s an occasion for the kids to dress up in costume and have fun!