Temperatures are dropping, the trees are shedding their leaves, and some of us have already seen snow fill our yards. Winter is upon us, but we still have time to make the most of fall. On our way to winter, we pass through the holiday known for tasty treats, creative costumes, and delightful decorations- Halloween.
So, before your patio turns into a Winter Wonderland, why not use it to spice up this fun-filled fall holiday by transforming it into a fright fest for friends and family? Who doesn’t love a festive scare? While it’s still warm enough to enjoy a little time on your patio, turn it into a haunted house for Halloween! Here are some terrifying tips:
Backyard Haunted House Tips:
Select a Theme for Your Haunted House
First, select your spook of choice. Perhaps guests with gallivant through a graveyard filled with zombies. Maybe they’ll wander through a maze of werewolves under a full moon. Need some inspiration? Channel one of your favorite horror movies. No matter how you decide to give your guests goosebumps, this will give you a starting point for the rest of the process.
Make Your Haunting Décor to Save Dough
While you could purchase your patio Halloween decorations, channeling your crafty side is a great way to ensure a low-cost attraction in your yard. Here are a few ideas:
- Cut gray cardboard into “gravestones” and pencil in creative names. (or names of your guests for those with darker humor)
- String cotton wool throughout trees to create the look (and feel) of spider webs.
- Shred cheesecloths and hang over entryways or doorways.
- Cut eye shapes out of cardboard tubes and insert glow sticks. Then place in dark corners of your yard to mimic glowing eyes.
Create a Trail
Give patrons a path to follow marked by objects such as faux candles. This will provide a clear start and finish to guests making their way through and allow you to plan the perfect scares at each twist and turn. The lighting provided by these markers will also ensure optimal safety.
Have you ever tried watching a scary movie sans music? It doesn’t pack quite the same petrifying punch. Search for a downloadable “haunted” playlist or put one together yourself. Just make sure the music sets the mood but is dialed down low enough so guests can still hear the bumps and thumps in the night.
Recruit friends and family to kick the scare up a notch. Have them dress up in themed costumes and jump out at your guests. Nothing will get their hearts pounding like a creepy clown that might actually be your brother-in-law popping out to say hello.
Try a Maze
If you’re willing to put in a little more effort to create a scary good haunted house, make a maze for attendees to walk through. Hang dark sheets or black over ropes acting as “clotheslines” on fixed objects such as railings, trees, or umbrellas in your yard. Just remember to provide enough lighting to ensure safety and that your guests can locate the exit.
To get the most use out of your homemade haunted house, offer a bonus visit to trick-or-treaters. Why leave them in the cold on your doorstep when you could show off your backyard haunted house? But remember those tasty treats we mentioned at the beginning? Don’t forget to give them some candy on the way out!