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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I have been doing pretty much the same thing for my annual Halloween party for the past six years. We recently moved into a new house so I want this years party to be EPIC! The problem is I don't know what to change, add or omit.
I always have a costume contest in which I give out trophies and prizes for the following categories: Scariest, Funniest, Most Original, Best Couple or Group, Best Overall. I have had lots more people dress up since my first party because of this contest. I don't really like to cook so I always have guests bring a dish. Everyone votes on their favorite main/side dish and their favorite dessert. I give trophies and prizes for each. Not sure how I can make those two any better but would love ideas.
I have new games every year, most of which I get from this forum, and my guests seem to really enjoy them. I give prizes to the winners of these as well. Last year I tried doing a scavanger hunt, prior to the party, where people rode around taking pictures of specific items on my list. They would send me the pics and I would keep track of who sent which pics and at what time so the person who sent the most would win, unless it came down to a tie. Then it would be the one who sent the last picture first. I only had three people to participate and they didn't send that many pictures. We live in the country and can't have the scavanger party after guests arrive because they would have to drive a pretty long distance to go find things to take pictures of.
I go all out on my decorations, making new things every year. Of course, I don't have the magnitude of decorations some of you have, but I think they are pretty good if I do say so myself.....
Most of my guests don't drink much. I have a couple that drink some but not to the point of getting dog drunk so I can't really up the game by having amazing cocktails (nor could I afford it). :-(
Last year I had two parties. One was the normal party, like I always do. The other was a Murder Mystery. I had asked the people who normally come to my party if they would be interested in a murder mystery party and only invited those that said yes. It went well, but it's not something I want to do every year and not in place of my normal party.
Nothing you can say will hurt my feelings so please give me any ideas you can think of to help make this years party epic.

Thanks so much for your help.
 

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Wow - I read through that... all of that, and I am pretty much at a loss to suggest anything which would make it more epic. It sounds like you have most every aspect covered extremely well.

Guess my two main comments would be - beware of the 'prize box' syndrome and make sure you are still having fun.

The 'prize box' is when you get a kid, pet, or whatever a brand new toy you are sure they will love, and they basically ignore it and spend hours playing with the box it came in. The short moral of the story is that sometimes 'epic' to you isn't 'epic' to others and vice versa. I hate to count the number of times I've spent hours fussing over some aspect of a halloween party or a prop for the big night and hardly anyone noticed. Then something I did almost as an afterthought or threw together in 5 minutes got all the attention/amazement/comments/etc.

On the 'be sure you are still having fun' side. I think some of the most 'epic' parties I've had, I was so worn out by the time it was 'go' time that it was almost anticlimactic. In looking back, I probably could have done 50% of the effort, the guests would have still had 99% of the fun/enjoyment, and my fun/enjoyment probably would have been multiple times more.

Best wishes!
 

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You could still do a scavenger hunt at your home. Does your country home have a wooded area, out buildings, a garden, outdoor Halloween decorations, etc. You make up say 6 hiding spots. The people split into 6 groups (I made them number off so it was a mix of the guests). At each spot will be five of the same clues to the next location. You keep the sixth clue to each spot to give the groups so each group starts out looking for a different spot. When the group finds the spot they take one clue and leave the others. The first group that returns with all six clues wins. I did this in our local Library where I used to work and they had quotes leading to books with the next quote clues inside. They loved it.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Wow - I read through that... all of that, and I am pretty much at a loss to suggest anything which would make it more epic. It sounds like you have most every aspect covered extremely well.

Guess my two main comments would be - beware of the 'prize box' syndrome and make sure you are still having fun.

The 'prize box' is when you get a kid, pet, or whatever a brand new toy you are sure they will love, and they basically ignore it and spend hours playing with the box it came in. The short moral of the story is that sometimes 'epic' to you isn't 'epic' to others and vice versa. I hate to count the number of times I've spent hours fussing over some aspect of a halloween party or a prop for the big night and hardly anyone noticed. Then something I did almost as an afterthought or threw together in 5 minutes got all the attention/amazement/comments/etc.

On the 'be sure you are still having fun' side. I think some of the most 'epic' parties I've had, I was so worn out by the time it was 'go' time that it was almost anticlimactic. In looking back, I probably could have done 50% of the effort, the guests would have still had 99% of the fun/enjoyment, and my fun/enjoyment probably would have been multiple times more.

Best wishes!
My bf always fusses at me for doing so much. I actually take the week prior to my party off to finish any decorating, etc that I haven't gotten done. But I really do enjoy it and look forward to it every year. I will have to admit you are right in that I can spend a ton of time on something and it's not really noticed and not do much at all on something and everyone goes on and on about it. I will have to say, even with all the effort I put into it I still have a really great time and actually think it's all worth it - until I have to take everything down and put it away........UUUGGGHHHH! Thanks for your thoughts I really do appreciate it. :)
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
You could still do a scavenger hunt at your home. Does your country home have a wooded area, out buildings, a garden, outdoor Halloween decorations, etc. You make up say 6 hiding spots. The people split into 6 groups (I made them number off so it was a mix of the guests). At each spot will be five of the same clues to the next location. You keep the sixth clue to each spot to give the groups so each group starts out looking for a different spot. When the group finds the spot they take one clue and leave the others. The first group that returns with all six clues wins. I did this in our local Library where I used to work and they had quotes leading to books with the next quote clues inside. They loved it.
This is kind of like the Escape Room we do. The first year I actually had an escape room set up in the basement. The only thing I didn't like about it was that I had to go down and reset it for the next group of people. I missed out on a lot of time that I could have been spending with family and friends. So ever since then I do a group escape room. It's not really a room but more like a scavenger hunt. One year our theme was Escape the Torture so we made a pillory that had about 9 locks on it. One person was put in (the holes were big enough that they could just stick their head and arms through) for a designated amount of time. During this time the other guests were trying to decipher the clues to find the keys to the locks. At the end of the designated time I would say "Well ya'll didn't get John out in time so he's dead!" John would come out of the pillory and someone else would go it. This continued until all 9 keys were found. We do something similar to this every year. I haven't even started thinking about what it will be this year though. :-(
Thanks for your ideas. I really appreciate it!
 

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One thing that I do for all of our parties is put up a green screen in one room, and then take photos of everyone in all their costumes, and apply different backgrounds that go with their costumes. (I don't spend a lot of time on it, but you could in theory do this and make it look really cool - Excuse the poor quality, this is the only one that I had readily available 🤪.) But everyone loves it and it's cool because they don't get them until a week or two after the party so it's kind of something they can remember the party by.
Plant Sleeve Tree Standing Street fashion
 
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