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Okay, so I'm a softhearted fool, but when I see a three-year-old ToT's face crumple in tears, fear and loathing, I feel like I've played a mean trick by decorating my house. I'm strongly thinking of moving the scary parts of my display to the side or back yard. Those of you who do this, care to comment on what works or doesn't work? Do you get lots of people to go back there, or do they all stay out front with their toddlers? How do you direct traffic to the back? Are signs sufficient? Do you send the older ones back there to get their treat?

Thanks in advance.
 

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This is what I am doing. I'm having a small happy trail called the pumpkin patch path for young kids. The other trail is about 700 ft and is going to be scary and what not.
 

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Ok, so this probably sounds pretty cheap. I'm trying to figure out a way to pass out candy in the cute section and in the scary section. But what if the kids go to both sections and want treats? I had just one treat area last year and we had over 500 tots. It gets kind of expensive to treat everyone twice. Any Ideas?
 

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I've been doing my setup in the garage for the past few years. I have one of those big inflatable arches from Target/WalMart at the entrance. Some ToTs are too scared to go in, so my 9 year old brings candy to them. I saw one haunt (I believe it was someone from this forum) where they had certificates for those 'brave souls' who went through the haunt, but also a certificate for those 'wise enough to stay out'. It was a clever way of giving something to everyone without making someone feel like a baby or a coward for not going in. My goal is to have a haunt that wraps around my house with a vortex tunnel in the back yard. I figure at the pace I'm going it should be complete around 2020.
 

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that is what i have set up. i have the front yard set up with the happy halloween crap with the pumpkins and happy ghosts. then on the side/back yard/in the garage is the scary stuff. it starts on the side yard where the people walk into a cemetery through a gate. then they make their way to the back yard and they see the "house" with "dinner" over the fire. then they make it into the back door of the garage and i have a full haunted house in my garage with and organ room, clown room, kids room, electric chair room, and a toxic room. then the people make their way out the front of the garage and down the driveway.
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pretty cool stuff! :)
 

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We started decorating our side yard and garage about four years ago, expanding from just the front yard set-up. It has developed into a scary part (the drive/garage), and the kid friendly part (front yard.)
We put a barrier up across the drive and let people know that the driveway walk is meant to be more intense. This year, we're erecting a 12 foot by 8 foot castle facade. We have costumed helpers who instruct those with small kids not to go through if they might be frightened. We also give candy out in both locations. In the past, we've had a few "double dippers" but not many. Crowd control was an issue last year and it's tough to keep track of who might have gone through, but IME, real little tots will be content to get their treat in the front yard part, while the older kids want to do the walk through. We also have helpers in the front part of the yard to hand out candy to the youngest kids. Your going to get a few who try to hit you up twice. Having a few assistants is a big help. We also use portable walkie-talkies to communicate potential problems between the two areas. The biggest problem we had was running out of candy in one area and then having to send a "runner" to get some from the other part. It caused a fw back ups. Just be sure to have enough candy on hand so it runs smooth.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
Ok, so this probably sounds pretty cheap. I'm trying to figure out a way to pass out candy in the cute section and in the scary section. But what if the kids go to both sections and want treats? I had just one treat area last year and we had over 500 tots. It gets kind of expensive to treat everyone twice. Any Ideas?
A couple of possibilities occur to me.

One, if possible have your scary path end up at the same place as the friendly one, and have only one treat station.

Two, you could get a stamp pad with blacklight ink, a distinctive halloween stamp, and stamp the hands of the tot's as they get their treat. (Giving them a hearty "Congratulations, you made it out alive!" to mask the real intent of the stamp...) With the candy bowl sitting under a blacklight lamp, it's obvious who's been through before. Maybe more trouble than it's worth; just brainstorming.
 

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Wow....this is cool.....I do a walk through on my side yard then they enter the back garage door and come out the front.....we have a lot of kids so I have to keep it family friendly except for the actors we will have in creepy costumes.....we hide an atv out back.....spook them with flashing lights and horns....always makes them jump....we decide to make the front of the house friendly fun and the maze a little scary for the older kids as seen here.http://community.webtv.net/boswell7/doc0
 

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What i do is set upmy front yard (and 2 neighbors yards) as simple cemeteries. On Halloween night i do my haunt. If parent feel it's too much for the littles ones. i have candy waiting for them out front, but everyone else... no haunt.. no candy... nah i'm not that mean about it ;)
 

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woot i havea long drive to the side but yet not enough props to elaborate or haunt the area yet but will over the years to come i think if you have the means bring them to you and haunt god speed or should i say........... hallows speed..................
 
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