Well i dont have that problem, my neighbors are seasonal and weekends mostly.
But I would say, try to get along with them as best you can remember you have to live there all year long. Telling them where to go is not the ansewer. You dont need an enemy living next door. Do your best to be a "nice guy" to them all year long, wave hi , offer to help do something, that sort of thing, be socialable.If possible try to show them what you do and how you do it and related it to something they understand, a hobby, or putting up lights for xmas, ect. If you can get them to reguard you as at least a passing friend they will be more inclined to cut you some slack a day or two a year. If you can make them part of the project more the better. Ask for advice or help from them even if you dont need it. In short you need all the positive PR you can get. The idea that "this is my property an I will do as a dam well please" doesnt float. Your neighbors have rights too. You work on props all year long, just consider this as one more project and who knows, the guy may even know something you can use.
We invite them to the party(s) and let them know it will be loudfor at least 2 days and nights.
Our closest neighbors to the north side of house and they are 2 younger guys( who like to do burnouts in their driveway as well as run the snowmobiles and whatever else they are fixing at 10 pm ) and then next to them some friends we ride with.
Across street is a church and since we have to listen to their festival every yr,It's only fair..besides our music is way better hahah
Our yard is mainly on the south and west side of house and for the south side there is a big field in between us and the next house. The river is between us and the west side.
So we lucked out and no problems in the 10 yrs we have been throwing this bash.
another thing is if they have kids....are they old enough to maybe help volunteer at your haunt. Ive lived here in this house for almost 9 years now and I have so many neighbors who wanna come help out. Now granted I dont do it all scary so they dont hear screams and air cannons going off all night but still even the traffic flow was something I worried about. So get to know the neighbors well. If they are an older couple, heck see if they would love to come over and hand out the candy. Show them around before the big night.
Some folks get all caught up in the Devilish of Halloween that all they want to think about is we are all devil worshiprs or mean crazy Witches. They just cant seem to think back to a time in there life when they too had fun on Halloween night. So try to get them involved to see that its all in fun for one or even a couple nights in Oct. Once involved they will begin to love the attention, and being part of this night . Well hopefully
I second what everybody is saying: get to know your nieghbors. If you set up early, (I'm going to start in Sept this year) it's the neighbors that will watch your stuff when you are away.
Don't be afraid to waive hello and if they need help, don't ever hesitate to offer service. You scratch their back first, and you'll be amazed at how people will come around.
Another tip I've learned: want to get loud at your party and don't want the nieghbors to call the cops? Invite the entire nieghborhood to your party. It's a great time to meet them, and they need to cut loose a little as well. And *bonus* if they are AT the party, they won't mind the noise, therefore won't call the cops. Everybody wins.
Be the first on your block to get to know your neighbors, and make as much halloween noise as you want.
Sickie I am much the same way way at home However I have found that just being social and freindly doesnt mean that they are gonna be knocking up for sugar. Okay he does knock up for beer (it is his) but outside of that I dont see him but once a week and its a row.
I don't do any noise on Halloween night after 10. Most of the time 9:30. When I started doing a yard haunt I went around and talked to each neighbor. Told them what I was up to and hoped my display wasn't offensive to them. ( notice I didn't say "asked them if it was" LOL). Got a few that still come around and act like I'm sacrificing goats or something. But for the better part most of these folks are cool.
Any year that we've had a new neighbor move in on either side of us, I write a fairly detailed letter to them explaining what they can expect each night leading up to Halloween (noises, music, effects lighting , etc). That seems to have done the trick, and I even ask them to keep their outside lighting down so we don't get a lot of ambient light ruining "my" lighting. Seems to have worked well so far. I just leave the note in their box.
Our neighbors have grown to love the haunt. But it wasn't always the case. I hear you on the solitude. But here's a few ideas:
1. Make up a bag of candy for each of the neighbors on your block. Pass them out about week before you get your haunt going (our yard haunt and the traffic it draws goes up the second weekend in October). Attach a note that says, "It's that time of year again!" and explain that you loved TOT as a kid and are keeping the tradition alive. Tell them you'll do your best to ensure the noise is done by a reasonable hour each night etc. etc.
2. Offer a neighborhood preview. Serve some chilie etc.
You want to do this because you don't want them organizing against you. AND neighbors are good watchdogs for your props as well.
After having the neighbors on one side standing out in their front lawn screaming at each other that they each wish the other was F#%@ing dead, both parents and children, the other neighbors don't seem to mind my making a little extra noise one night each year. lol I do turn down the volume after nine, and most of the sound is off by 10, although we're open until the witching hour.
I don't really do a lot of loud sound on the big night, nor for the party. I've never had anyone complain about noise during any of my "events". The loudest thing I have going on is my own scream when I sneak up behind the teens and let out a most spine-chilling and blood-curdling scream. All of my neighbors know what I do every year, and I've been here longer than any of them, so it's all good.
I, like SickieIckie, prefer solitude, but October is the one month that I relax my "hermitude" and actually talk to my neighbors, mostly answering questions and being a good ghostess.
Nobody has complained yet for Halloween, I usually have the music on until around 11. I keep everything going for an hour after the last ToT. I don't know why, other than the fact that I hate for it to end! heheheh!
And we have had music 'til 3am for our party and no problems there either. So I guess we are pretty lucky.