Wednesday, October 27, 2010
13 Days of Halloween - Trunk or Treat
Trunk or Treats are, in my experience, usually put on by churches, but I think some schools also do it. In case you've never been to one, here's how it works. Everyone parks their cars in one lot, and the lot is then roped off, so that you don't have to worry about traffic and the kids can run freely from car to car. This is much safer than kids running up and down residential streets, like they do with traditional trick or treating, with traffic or people backing out of their driveways. Everyone opens their trunk, decorates the trunk and/or their whole car, and the kids go from car to car, trick or treating.
Last night was my church's trunk or treat event. It was a blast! In addition to the decorated cars, we also had carnival games like a ring toss, cake walk, etc. and food. That would be me, in the above picture, dressed as The Grey Lady (a common title for a female ghost) standing in front of my haunted abode. I took a piece of cardboard from a TV box and, using poster paint, painted the house onto it. Then I cut out the windows, so that the light from the trunk would shine through the windows. The kids had to reach through the front door to get a piece of candy. Even though there wasn't anything in the trunk to get them, I'd hint that something might get them, so they'd better be quick. (I only did this with the older kids.) Funny how our own imaginations can give us the biggest fright.
I also had a game for them to play; a trick in order to get the treat. They had to throw three squishy balls into the jack-o-lantern's mouth. (You can see it to the right of the photo.) It was just a box that I also painted with poster paints, then cut the mouth out. I sat the box on a folding chair so it would be at the right height. I was surprised at how much this was a hit with the kids. Although, maybe it was because I was hamming it up, in character, and talking about how my jack-o-lantern was hungry and needed to be fed... We also played creepy Halloween music through our car speakers to set the mood. Again, it was a lot of fun. In fact, I think I had just as much fun as the kids did.
Now I know this is going to surprise you, (Ha!), but when it comes to Halloween, I'm usually a traditionalist. When I first heard of Trunk or Treat, I reacted thusly: "No, no no. Trick or treating is done door to door! Where's the fun in going from car to car? How can walking up to a car replace knocking on the door of a spooky dark house, not knowing who is going to open the door?" But having experienced a couple of Trunk or Treats now, I'd have to say, they're growing on me. It's nice that it's a controlled, safe environment, but I think my favorite aspect of it, is that I get to celebrate trick or treating and Halloween with 60+ of my closest friends and acquaintances. I remember when I was little, my parents would drive me all over the neighborhood, just so I could trick or treat at our friends' houses, so they could see my costume, etc. Well, now all your friends are just one or two parking spaces away!
What do you think? Do you prefer Trunk or Treat over the traditional door-to-door approach?