It’s almost the spookiest time of the year! Halloween is right around the bend and the festivities are about to pick up. This means there will be plenty of celebrations going on for the most hallowed of eves. Why shouldn’t yours be the best, though? There’s nothing better for the season than a good ol’ fashioned Halloween hootenanny! Here’s some tips on how you can host your very own…
The outdoors are always more delightful
The first thing that you need to know about a hootenanny is that it is not an inside party. Everything that defines a hootenanny is something must take place outside. Find a good venue with plenty of room, as there needs to be space for all of the activities that will make your hootenanny a hoot. A spot with more of a “farm” or “harvest” aesthetic will be more fitting for a hootenanny, but anywhere with trees and a good patio will also do!
Have a scary movie playing
The key to a hootenanny is to have a lot of things going on. It can’t be a one trick pony. One sure fire and classic way to spice up the modern hootenanny is to set up a projector and screen outside to always have some visual stimulation going on for your guests. Set up some scary movies to be playing throughout your party, this will give some guests something fun to do by watching it, as well as set the tone for the rest of the party. If you need some help on setting up such a thing, here is a helpful article with some tips on setting up a movie outside.
Have a killer soundtrack
A hootenanny is, by definition, a musical event. This means that the music at your hootenanny needs to be on point. For a Halloween hootenanny, a soundtrack that is built on the back of rockabilly classics is usually a pretty safe bet, but any Halloween-themed music that is upbeat will keep the party moving.
People should be dancing
As stated above, music is integral to the hootenanny experience. The reason for this, though, and the reason for choosing upbeat music, is that dancing should be the primary activity at a hootenanny. This means setting up an environment where people absolutely can’t help but dancing is essential to throwing the perfect Halloween hootenanny. This is why finding the right area with plenty of room is important, as well having some of your space have harder floor that is conducive to dancing. Another crucial part of creating this environment is setting up a sound system that gets people pumped (you’ll probably need a good PA system, like the ones here).
A Halloween hootenanny is not very Halloween-like unless people are wearing costumers. Set up different motivators at your hootenanny to get people into the spirit of the season. Make sure that you heavily advertise this as a costume party, and have plenty of activities that can only be enjoyed by people who followed suit, such as a costume party. Of course, you can always just engage in public shaming if they don’t.
Rock your catering
A hootenanny isn’t just a normal Halloween party. It’s more of a next level experience. This needs to be considered when putting together the assortment of food and drinks for your guests. Be creative with your selection of what to eat. Find ways to customize classic party dishes and make something fun and spooky for the entire event. Everyone loves a good snack that resembles bloody limbs and organs, or at least they do at this time of the year.
Visualize the tone
A hootenanny’s success is determined on the energy level of the people who participate in it. If you want to host a great one, then you need people to feel that energy from the moment they walk in. We’ve already brought up some of the many ways that you can accomplish this, from music to setting up various activities. However, you need to take the tone of a hootenanny and visualize it. For Halloween time, this means starting with a kind of countryside, harvest festival-aesthetic, and then adding a bit of the classic Halloween-style that mocks death and laughs in the face of mortality.
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