Ask most kids, and they will tell you that Halloween is one of their favorite holidays. It’s a time to eat loads of candy, dress up in costumes of your favorite characters and take part in the many fun events happening during the spooky season. It’s a night meant for children’s fun and candymakers’ profits.
Halloween spirit seems to deteriorate with age. Maybe it’s because as adults we get busy with school or work — or find Halloween celebrations feel childish now. Trick-or-treating and candy binges become something of the past. It can feel like an extra chore to find a costume and buy chocolates. We may move on to pranking and parties, but there are a lot of other fun activities to keep the Halloween spirit alive into adulthood.
Personally, as I’ve gotten older, watching horror movies with friends has become my favorite Halloween activity. As a kid I wasn’t a fan of scary movies, but now I look forward to new releases this time of year. I also find older movies that still make me jump.
Some of my favorite movie suggestions are “Scream,” “Us,” and the classic “Halloween.” Watching a good scary movie can be a great way to escape some of the more childish parts of Halloween during the season.
The IU Cinema offers a great selection of creepy movies each year during the month of October. And, for those who want to do the time warp, you can find a late night showing of the “Rocky Horror Picture Show.” If there isn’t a show near you, throw your own Rocky Horror party complete with costumes and props.
Haunted houses and attractions are also an excellent way to celebrate the season. In Bloomington and Indianapolis, there are several you can visit, including the Bakers Junction Haunted Train.
There are also lots of spirited music events and other activities around Halloween. Each year you can catch Dennis James Hosts Halloween at the IU Auditorium. There is a Halloween concert at the Buskirk Chumley. Oliver Winery hosts a Halloween weekend encouraging adults to dress up in costume.
You don’t have to go out to have fun on Halloween. Invite friends over for a Halloween themed meal. Bake ghost cookies or make caramel apples. Dress up in costume to hand out candy to kids. Make a Spotify list of Halloween songs.
Some of my favorite memories revolve around trick-or-treating with friends and family. In my neighborhood, the entire street is alive with decorations, jack-o'-lanterns, wandering families and neighbors on their porches handing out candy. It was a community event.
When I outgrew that phase in life, I didn’t want to lose the part of it that brought me joy. Halloween may be a holiday focused on kids, but the fun doesn’t have to end as we get older. So, host a party, watch scary movies and start a new Halloween tradition. Or just turn on your porch light and pass out some Halloween candy to make a lot of kids smile. Bonus points if you buy the full-size candy bars.
Jack Davis (he/him) is a freshman studying journalism.