We didn't go to the SeaWitch
Festival this year; it landed on the same day as Halloween, so we stayed home
and scared some childred. The turn-out was so low this year, I even had time to
make a little music video in the cemetary. The Salisbury Trick-or-Treat date
this year was the day after Halloween, so we did Halloween at home, and then
took the girls to Salisbury for candy-begging. They had wanted to be something
else for Halloween, but we ran out of time to make costumes. They went as
mummies. It took about 3 hours to wrap each kid up in bandages, and by the end
of the night, they were ready to get out of them.
2009 - Seawitch Festival
was a big hit! We had a good Seawitch Festival
in Delaware, and Halloween night went well,
too. This first set of pictures is from the
Seawitch Festival in DE (the Saturday before
Halloween). Tess was magically transformed into
The Last Unicorn. The mask is paper mache, the
horn is carved from white oak, and the hooves
are "fun foam". Eliza's costume used to be
Tess's from a few years ago. Eliza was really
good about wearing the wig, and it worked so
well on her. We had pizza and ice cream at
Grotto Pizza, Eliza and Tess ate a scone, Tess
had an "Abbey Road" moment, and Eliza made
friends with a witch. Good times...
2009 - Halloween Night
We had a lot going
on this October, so we got a late start on everything. We were decorating,
carving pumpkins, and setting up flood lights all the way up until 4PM on
Halloween afternoon. Trick-or-Treating was from 4PM to 8PM this year, and
we had a decent turn-out. Luckily we had very few obnoxious teenagers, and
lots of cute (and polite) kids in costumes. I handed out lolipops in my
Gatekeeper costume to the little kids that were brave enough to come close.
I scared one boy so bad that he threw his bucket and candy all over the lawn
as he scurried on all fours to get away from me. A pre-teen was dragged
kicking and screaming (literally) toward me by her mother. There were tears
in her eyes and you could hear her screams for a couple blocks, I'm sure.
Tess and Eliza were on candy-duty, and even got to scare a little at the end
of the night. I was surprised by how many kids were scared of another
little kid in a white sheet. More good times.
We planned differently this year. Since it's too
difficult to take the girls Trick-or-Treating on
Halloween night AND be at home for handing out candy, we
decided to take them candy-begging at the Seawitch
Festival in Rehoboth, DE. This annual festival is
great. It's an all-day Halloween event with costume
parades, games, activities, candy, and lots of dogs in
costumes (mostly owned by couples living alternative
Months ago, Tess decided (with some persuasion) that she
wanted to be WordGirl. WordGirl is a cartoon on PBS;
the 10 year-old alien superhero fights crime with a
colossal vocabulary. WordGirl has an alien monkey
side-kick named Captain Huggy Face. Tess was WordGirl
and Eliza was Captain Huggy Face. As a last minute
whim, I dressed up as WordGirl's nemesis Dr. Two-Brains
and Erica dressed up as one of Dr. Two-Brain's
Henchmen. Both of the girl's costumes were made
completely from scratch; the adult costumes were 90%
constructed from eBay.
Tess made an excellent superhero, and Eliza made for a
very convincing monkey side-kick.
Well, although we spent a ton of time getting ready and
planning this year's new decorations and costumes, the
trick-or-treater turn-out was terrible. In previous years,
we'd get anywhere between 75 and 150 kids/teenagers coming
to our door. This year, we got about 20... and that's
estimating on the high side, and including the adults. We
still had fun, though. The pumpkins are listed in order:
Tan, Erica, Tess, and Eliza. Eliza drew the face, and I
carved it for her.
Harris and Linda came down to see the festivities as well.
Thanks to Harris, I have decent pictures of my costume.
It's difficult to take pictures of one-self in a costume
like this. Harris and Linda also helped scare the few kids
that came to the door. Frightening small children can be
Well, this was a very busy year and we only had a few weeks
for preparations. Tess wanted to be a mummy. Eliza was a
pirate, and I decided that I needed a new "scare costume"
because the kids have learned to look for the guy in the
bushes with the black cloak and grey mask. My costume this
year was "The Gatekeeper" whose design is mostly pulled from
the creatures in M. Night Shyamalan 's
"The Village". It's not really supposed to be the same
creature, but similar. It worked out well... many small
children screamed, and some adults, too.
finally got around to building a fog chiller out of a big
cooler and lots of sheet metal ducting, but when I went to
power up my fog machine, it stopped working. A phone call
to tech support yielded almost no help, so I broke out the
tools and dismantled it myself. I got it working for about
2 hours, then it stopped again... so no fog this year =(
another note, we promised Tess that she could actually
Trick-Or-Treat this year. In years past, we took her to the
8 closest houses and then rushed right back home so we could
prepare to scare kids that came to our house. This is a big
dilemma for us; Halloween is only 1 day, and you can't be
out taking your kid around to strangers' houses AND be at
your house trying to get strangers' kids to pee themselves -
like I said - big dilemma. Erica had a great idea. The
plan was to take the kids to a "Trick-Or-Treat Street" that
takes place on the preceding Saturday! The plan was
perfect. Tess was satisfied with candy from a different
day, and we get to scare kids without interruption. BUT -
things didn't go as planned. The Saturday event in
Salisbury was canceled due to "possible inclement weather".
What the hell, man! It didn't even look like it was going
Anyhow, Erica quickly
scoured the internet for other possibilities and we ended up
driving to Rehoboth, DE for their annual SeaWitch Festival
Parade. Luckily, the event runs until midnight - so it
wasn't a big deal that we got there around 7:30PM. It was a
big hit - we're definitely going back next year.
wanted to be a witch this year for Halloween, and Erica
spent a lot of time and effort in building this costume to
make it just right. Tess had a great time Trick-or-Treating
in our neighborhood, and then we rushed back to the house to
scare young children and hand out candy.
year, we didn't get as much done as last year. I was
working a lot in October, and things just didn't get done as
quickly as we had hoped. I still didn't make the fog
chiller that I wanted to; but it was a little windy this
year, and all my fog ended up blowing away anyhow, so no big
loss. I'll have a fog chiller next year.
Nick the Demon
is so thrilled about being Dorothy from The Wizard of Oz
this year. She's watched the movie dozens of times and
knows most of the lines. Yes, we let her watch the same
movie over and over again. Sometimes we just rewind it and
push "Play" over again. We've also got some great new
decorations this year! The Cemetery is a new addition.
I've constructed a faux fence with 1/2" dowel rods, some
trim wood from the lumber store, and cast iron finials
purchased on eBay. Painting the fence was such a pain. I
ended up buying one of those Wagner Power-Sprayers and
several gallons of black paint from Walmart. Did you know
that the paint department doesn't make black paint? What
they call black is just a really dark grey. I'm not sure
how I expected them to take a can of pure white paint, add a
few ounces of color, and end up with flat black... but it
was close enough. It turns out that the "black" latex house
paint is almost exactly like the "black" spray paint you get
off the shelf.
of work, Erica also gets tons of credit for finding our
life-sized ghouls and demons. Tess likes them a lot, too.
Nick the Demon
Monsters Inc. was the big movie of the year, and Tess was a
perfect fit for Boo. Tess's costume was almost entirely
made by none other than myself. We found some huge shirts
that matched the color, and then I made the long shirt and
tights. I didn't make the socks - those are from WalMart.
Erica is sporting a two-part white dress that I made for
her. It's a tailored slip underneath, and a shear gown over
top. That's her in someone else's graveyard below. We also
got creative with a few pumpkin designs; Erica made the
devil woman pumpkin and I made the Linux pumpkin. This was
my first year with a "scare costume". I covered myself in
shredded black cloth, hid in the bushes next to the front
door and scared people as they came to the door. Many
screamed, some laughed, a few cried... one little girl wet
herself, I think. Ah... good times.