Bringing Halloween to College
By Sam, age 19, Massachusetts
Sweet Designs Staff Intern
I have always been a fanatic about Halloween. I love everything about it: the costumes, the atmosphere, the scary stories, the cheesy horror movie marathons, the free candy, everything. So when I went away to college, I was afraid I would miss out on some of the Halloween spirit. Boy, was I wrong. College is a great place to bring out the spooky little kid in everyone.
Here are some simple tips to help bring the Halloween life to your dorm life.
First, get decorations. Many big box or pharmacy stores like Walmart, Target, CVS, and Walgreens have fun, festive decorations for reasonable prices. Confetti streamers are easy to put up and take down, but you should ask your RA what kind of tape to use when decorating. Many kinds of tape can cause wall damage, and in college, that damage can cost you hundreds of dollars in refurbishing. You can even buy green, purple, and orange colored lights and string them around your common room or hallway. Keep them up all year, and enjoy a festive mood for any occasion. Or, if you want to try something simple, buy a small plastic pumpkin (like the ones little kids take trick-or-treating) and fill it with candy for your roommates and neighbors.
Next, plan some fun Halloween-type activities with some friends. Plan a small get-together and tell scary stories with the lights out. Find out if any places on campus are haunted and hold a small séance with an Ouija board. See if the community is sponsoring any Halloween events. Last year, my friend spent her Halloween assisting small children in their trick-or-treat extravaganzas by guiding them around town. She loved seeing all the little kids in their costumes.
Speaking of costumes, just because you're in college and on the "cusp of adulthood," it doesn"t mean you are forbidden to dress up for Halloween. Many of the fraternities and sororities on my campus held costume parties, and some kids even went to their classes in costume. However, finding a good costume is always the hardest part of Halloween. This is mostly because costumes at Halloween outlet stores are frantically expensive, and buying costumes online is never easy or cheap. My advice is to do something simple, like purchasing a devil-horned headband or putting two red dots on your neck. But if you're a hard-core Halloween fan like I am, you can always try constructing your own costume with materials you have or can easily find. Goodwill is a great place to find pieces for outfits or accessories. And, when in doubt, you can always borrow something from your friends.
As I have learned over the years, it's not the gaudiest costume people admire but the wittiest. In fact, last year, the boy who won the costume contest at my college was dressed as Sarah Palin. But remember, if you're going to make your own costume, make sure you plan ahead and stay dedicated. Unless you're a soon-to-be-designer on Project Runway, throwing something together at the last minute rarely works out the way we would like it.
So, Trick or Treat, fellow Sweet Designers! Happy Halloween!