Last updated on September 17th, 2021
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Once October rolls around, Halloween suddenly seems right around the corner. Like a corner that couldn’t possibly be 31 days away. I don’t know how it does that so quickly, but the Halloween countdown window has begun.
Do your kids love to celebrate Halloween?
If you have littles, you’ve probably been asked at least once about throwing a kids Halloween party. As you probably know by now – kids love celebrating. And Halloween is a big holiday for them.
As much as I love Halloween parties, I find that they can be a little tricky for the preschool and elementary school bunch. It can be hard to think of lots of kids Halloween party ideas that aren’t completely scary.
And it can be hard to keep these celebrations a little less spooky and more focused on the happy elements of the holiday.
Over the years, we have hosted a variety of Halloween parties for little ones. From fun afternoon play dates to pre-trick-or-treat festivities and a witches’ tea party, there are lots of non-scary ways to host a kids Halloween party.
So, I am so excited to share some of my favorite kids Halloween party ideas here. Hopefully, they will help you find the perfect spooky balance that’s right for your guests and make Halloween extra fun this year.
Set a Non-Scary Tone from the Start
As you know, the first thing to do when planning a party is to invite your guests. The invitation design that you choose tells guests the kind of party that you’re hosting.
So when it comes to choosing a Halloween invitation for a non-scary kids Halloween party, send guests something that is cute and fun. Think smiling pumpkins, cute witches, adorable black cats, happy ghosts or other friendly Halloween images.
This type of Halloween invitation will set a less spooky tone for your celebration before guests even arrive. And by having a theme with cute motifs, you’re sure to make your party welcoming no matter what the kids’ ages.
Choose Familiar Halloween Images
To keep the party more kid friendly and less scary, select an invitation and party decorations with familiar Halloween images. For toddlers and young kids, choose designs with non-scary Halloween images including pumpkins, witches, black cats and friendly ghosts.
If you are hosting a celebration for kids over 5, you can add spiders, cobwebs, friendly monsters and maybe even mummies. When deciding on the Halloween images to use, be sure to know your guests. Some kids can do more scary at certain ages than others. If you aren’t sure, stick with friendly and familiar.
To Wear a Costume or Not
When most people think Halloween, they think costumes. And if you’re hosting a kids Halloween party, costumes most likely come with it.
The problem is that some costumes might be too scary for everyone’s tastes.
When deciding about asking guests to wear their costumes, think about your audience. If you are hosting a family play date for your mom’s group, costumes will probably be a wonderful addition. Baby Halloween costumes can be the cutest.
But if you’re mixing a lot of age groups – possibly not.
Clarify whether or not guests should wear costumes with a note on the bottom of your invitation. Something like “Be sure to wear your costume” or “Come dressed in your Halloween best”.
And if you don’t want guests to don their costumes, you can say that too. But, be sure to write it in the positive. Instead of saying “No costumes allowed”, encourage guests to wear something else that’s festive. You can suggest orange and black or for guests to don their favorite Halloween shirt.
Serve Up Healthy Halloween Snacks
Some of my favorite Halloween kids party ideas involve food. Because when you entertain, you need to keep everyone happy and fed.
When planning a Halloween party menu for kids, be sure to mix in some healthy Halloween snacks to the food selection. Parents will be forever thankful and you’ll avoid potential kid breakdowns at the party from too much sugar.
And these days, there are lots of healthy Halloween snacks to choose from. You can construct our Halloween Ghost Kabobs or set up a dessert bar for kids to make them on their own.
Or you could assemble a candy corn vegetable tray since vegetables always look more appealing when arranged in a pretty way. Another ideas is to make this delicious sweet and salty fall snack mix for guests to munch on.
Photo courtesy of Texanerin
Some other ideas include healthy (and smiley) pumpkin oranges, monster mouths made from apple slices, Halloween rice cakes or these healthy chocolate chip pumpkin muffin bites.
Keep Drink Options Simple
When planning kids drinks, remember that simple is sometimes better. Kids love a good juice box. Or cup of lemonade and bottle of water.
Most importantly, be sure to have water on hand. You can serve in dressed up water bottles that look like smiling pumpkins. Or, if the guests are older, you can serve in drink dispensers.
Other easy drink options include a variety of juice boxes. You can also put out iced tea, lemonade and apple cider for a fall feel. And if it’s chillier on the day of your party, you can serve a Halloween hot chocolate.
For anyone that thinks a party isn’t complete without punch, choose one specialty drink to feature. This witches’ brew (minus the eyeballs) or Halloween cranberry cider could be fun options.
Play Classic Halloween Games
Kids love to play games at a party. For your kids Halloween party, choose games that your kids already know how to play and put a Halloween twist on them. This will make the games more fun during the celebration.
Some ideas include Pin the Stem on the Pumpkin, Halloween Freeze Dance and Mummy Limbo. You could also make this Halloween Bingo Game by Party Bright for a fun twist on a classic version.
If you have some older, artistic kids in the house, you could also set up a face painting station. Purchase some a Face Paint Kit for Kids (affiliate) and make a simple menu of Halloween themed designs to choose from. And if you don’t have a great eye for design, many face painting kits also include stencils to make the painting process easier. This is sure to be a entertainment win!
Another Halloween game winner – paper and pencil games. You can print out our Free Printable Halloween Word Scramble and let guests play together. Other Halloween paper and pencil games include Tic Tac Toe, Halloween Word Search, Halloween A to Z and a Halloween Word List (affiliates).
And as a special Halloween treat, you can hand out these adorable Halloween pencils and toppers as a treat for kids to play the game with (affiliate).
Photo from Girly Gifts
Create a Photo Booth
Capture the memories of the season by setting up a photo booth. Guests love taking pictures – even little ones. And it’s a great way to capture Halloween memories of those adorable Halloween costumes.
To create a photo booth area, choose a space at the party that is easily accessible and doesn’t get in the way of the party flow. A blank wall works really well to give you space to set up the photo backdrop. If the weather is good, move your photo booth outside. You can use the natural fall colors as part of your background.
Next create a Halloween photo backdrop for guests to pose in front of. Check out some of our favorite DIY Halloween party backdrop ideas here. When designing the backdrop, be sure to use those familiar Halloween images that you chose when planning the party.
One of my favorite photo booth backdrops is setting up a balloon garland. This assortment of friendly Halloween balloons from Girly Gifts is sure to not scare anyone (affiliate). And posing in front of the “Boo” balloon will be tons of fun!
For taking the photos for a kids Halloween party, ask an adult guest to take the photos. You can use a traditional snap and shoot or a phone camera. Another idea is to use an Fujifilm Instax Instant Camera (affiliate) for instant photos. Then, you can send each guest a photo as a thank you for coming. This is a great way to skip the favors.
This list of Halloween kids party ideas wouldn’t be complete without some ideas for decorating. And instead of buying decorations at the store, work together as a family to make some special décor for the party. Check out our Halloween Fun for Kids Ideas board for lots of inspiration to get you started.
Kid drawn art makes wonderful decorations that is budget friendly and not too scary. They could even cut out ghosts and pumpkins to hang up for some Halloween fun. Even some flying bats can be fun. Check out this easy bat decoration to add to your dessert table or even your front door.
When decorating, add a friendly Halloween touch to unexpected places. Drape a colorful garland down the staircase. Add a glitter black tree to the center of a table (affiliate). You can hang with homemade smiling ghost ornaments. Or transform vases into smiling pumpkin candles and add to a shelf.
You can even give a happy Halloween touch to your water bottles. Just dress them up with these Free Printable Pumpkin Water Bottle Labels. Guests will love them and they’ll be the star of the drinks table.
No time to make homemade decorations? Not to worry. There are lots of non-scary Halloween decorations you can purchase to save time instead. Hang some Halloween friendly ghosts on branches outside to add a festive touch (affiliate). Or add an assortment of friendly Halloween yard signs to give a welcoming feel to your front yard (affiliate).
Inside, you can hang this Free Printable Candy Corn Banner or decorate with fun Halloween patterns using this felted Halloween garland (affiliate). Or hang these pretty cute Halloween swirl decorations from the ceiling for even more fun (affiliate). There are so many ways to add a festive Halloween look without going super scary.
Keep It Disposable
Although we love to help the environment and try to use real dinnerware and utensils at a party when we can, when celebrating with kids paper plates, plastic/wooden utensils and disposable cups are easier and more kid friendly.
Instead of buying the expensive Halloween themed servingware, choose items that are solid colors. (Party planning trick… go to your local dollar store for all your party paper goods. They always have solid colors and each pack is only $1.)
For your kid friendly Halloween party, you can mix and match orange, black, purple and lime green to make a fun assortment of items.
And if your little one insists on Halloween themed items, agree to the napkins. They are the one item that is easy to store and use next year (or can be added to some Halloween themed dinners after the party).
Favors One Can Use
Since the kids will already be overloaded with sweets on Halloween night, choose a favor that they can use.
Send the kids home with personalized treat buckets (affiliate) or bags that they can use for trick or treating, mini flashlights (affiliate), mini glow sticks (affiliate) or reflector tape (affiliate) for their costumes. If you choose glow sticks, be sure to add these Free Printable Halloween Glow Stick Tags to them.
You could also choose a “healthier” treat such as a caramel apple, chocolate dipped fruit or a Goldfish cracker pumpkin. Or check out these non-candy treat ideas that kids will love and parents will be grateful for.
Or make your own Halloween party favor and put together Halloween beading kits for kids to craft when they get home. There’s even a free printable tag to attached. It’s a fun craft kids can create after the Halloween party is over.
Craft It Up
If games aren’t your kids thing, set up a Halloween crafts table for them to enjoy instead. You can gather supplies to paint pumpkins, make paper plate bats or assemble Halloween bottlecap necklaces. And if the guests like sewing, you could make these easy Halloween pencil toppers. Halloween craft ideas are endless.
They can also have fun make Printable Halloween Puppets from Printables Fairy. After they assemble their puppets, invite guests to put on a puppet show together.
If you don’t mind getting a little messy, you could make some candy corn slime to play with. It’s squishy texture makes it great to get sticky with. And it’s even taste safe, which means you can use it as an easy activity for little ones.
You can also make your snack into a craft. Let guests decorate Halloween cookies, build a graham cracker haunted house or craft these bat snacks. It’s a great way to get creative and have a special treat at the same time.
Remember “Monster Mash” or “Ten Little Pumpkins” from when you were a kid? Possibly not. But Halloween music for kids has come a long way. Or they just wrote more songs.
Music is a great way to set a friendly tone for your kids Halloween party. Check your local library for some spooky selections. Two of my favorite Halloween music kids song collections include Halloween Kids Songs and Halloween Sing Along (affiliates). We have adored both of these collections for years and still play them every Halloween.
Ready to plan your own kids Halloween party? Hopefully, these kids Halloween party ideas gets your planning started. Remember when planning any celebration, start with the guest list and a theme. Once you know how big of an event you want to have, you can organize a menu, party games and activities for guests to do. Lastly, decorate the space together. This is one of my favorite parts of celebrating. Be sure to enjoy decking out your space and making it festive.
Love these kids Halloween party ideas? Be sure to pin them for later.
Looking for fun non-scary Halloween designs? Check out our shop for lots of fun and non-scary Halloween designs that are sure to make your celebration wonderful.
Most importantly, we hope you have a wonderful Halloween kids party!