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Halloween Guide and Ideas
Halloween Guide and Ideas


Thirteen Days of Halloween

Halloween traditions are a wonderful thing and holding a "Thirteen Days of Halloween" party is one such event we hold every year to signal the start of the haunting season. You'd be surprised how many people have created their own traditions over the years.

On October 19th., we invite 13 of our closest friends and neighbors to gather in the backyard of our house. Several dozens scented candles in vanilla, pumpkin spice and harvest apple are arraigned around the backyard. We burn pumpkin spice scented incense to fill the air with the wonderful aromas of the Halloween season. All together, these give off an intoxicating aroma of Autumn that gets everyone in the mood. Check out this article about Halloween scents to find out where we get all ours from.

We lay out a large circle which is made from 80 plaster skulls that we cast years ago for a skull and bone pile display. We use an old tree stump in the center to act as the altar. Sitting on the altar is a large Jack o' Lantern. A long coffin shaped table that we made and painted black on top with orange legs awaits our group with apple cider, freshly baked pumpkin pie and other refreshments.

Orange and black paper plates, disposable tumblers and reusable plastic flatware are provided. We also add two lined trash cans at each end of the table paper waste and cans and bottles and a small bucket for the plastic flatware, which can be washed and used again. We can take the cans and bottles to a local recycling place to exchange for cash, which helps off set the party cost.

Our group, made up of thirteen Halloween enthusiasts assemble at our house at 11:30 pm. All come dressed in black robes and each brings a small pumpkin carved into a Jack o' Lantern for this occasion. Wraith and I stand on opposite sides of our gate and as each member arrives we great them. "Welcome, (say the person's name), Son (or) Daughter of the Halloween spirits." until the last person had arrived.

Just before midnight, everyone lights a candle and puts it in their jack-o-lantern. Silently, we all move into the circle. At Midnight we play the sound of Big Ben type clock, large and booming, chiming twelve chimes, it's midnight! The beginning of our season of the 13 days of Halloween! The beginning of the season we all live for and love so much!

I speak first and welcome in the Thirteen Days of Halloween and honor the glorious month of October followed by a few words about what lies in the haunting time ahead. We then go around the circle and each person says something about the upcoming celebration and give thanks to the Halloween spirits.

Then we all form a single line and walk around one or two blocks, wearing our black robes and carrying our lit jack-o-lanterns to the graveyard. We usually do this around our own neighborhood since it has a nice spooky ambience to it all year long. The neighbors are used to it after so many years that no one will be calling the police telling them that there's a group of crazy people with Jack-O-Lanterns walking the streets after midnight. They know it must be October 19th again.

When we return, we reform our circle and then I say a few more words to close the ceremony and put on a CD of Danse Macabre. We all "frolic", i.e. we dance around the circle, kicking up our heels and singing silly words to Halloween songs. Just acting like the big kids that we are. That's how we stay young around here!

We then officially call the ceremony to a close and it's time for Halloween music and food with pumpkin pie and a variety of Halloween treats, all of which are surprisingly easy to find a few weeks before Halloween. We also make a few of the Halloween treats and have others bring a few things with them to off set the cost. If everyone brings something and it's planned out ahead of time the load on one person isn't so bad. I leave the delegation of party stuff to Wraith since she's good at organizing like that.

And so begins The Thirteen Days of Halloween



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