You can spend as much or as little time and money as you want on any party. But, like, why? At the end of the day, unless your party is end-of-the-world good, most guests will probably only have three concerns: 1) Was there food? 2) Was there music? and 3) How much alcohol was available? As long as you nail those bullet points and invite the right kind of people, your party is going to be a success. Thus, we’re starting a new series here at The Daily Meal: The Lazy Host’s Guide to Entertaining. And we’re kicking things off with what I believe to be the easiest holiday to throw a graveyard smash for: Halloween.
Throwing a successful yet insanely fun Halloween party is easy for a few reasons. For one thing, Halloween is easy to decorate for (even down to small details), and it can be really cheap. Halloween also has a built-in dessert — candy — and fun, festive music that can only add to the atmosphere.
So don’t worry that there are only a few short weeks left until October 31. Your party is still going to be amazing, and you won’t even have to try all that hard.
The best part about putting a party together in the twenty-first century is that inviting people is super-duper easy. Just throw together a Facebook event with the time, date, and maybe some spooky clip art in the header to keep people pumped. You could mess with a bunch of apps or just text people, but Facebook will keep your invite list (and number of attendees) all in one place. It’s just easiest.
The best part of any Halloween party is making sure that people come in costume, so you know, be sure to include that in your party invite. If you find that your friends are even lazier than you are and don’t want to put forth that effort, provide some paper masks and face paint at your party for instant costumes.
Luckily, you can decorate for Halloween easily and inexpensively. Fake cobwebs and little plastic spiders can be strewn across any table and in any corner of your household. I also highly recommend buying some window clings and paper Halloween banners. They cost almost nothing and can be put up in a matter of minutes for an instantly spooky household.
If you’re like me and you like to make your own playlists, put some actual effort in here. Mix Top 40 and classic party jams (Spice Girls, anyone?) with classic spooky Halloween songs like “Thriller,” “Somebody’s Watching Me,” and that classic graveyard smash “The Monster Mash.” If that doesn’t sound like fun to you, go to Spotify, Pandora, or YouTube and use one of their premade mixes. You can always skip over songs that are lame.
Don’t overthink your appetizers — just serve up some frozen apps. We highly recommend the pork gyosa and these nine other Trader Joe’s frozen appetizers.
You could go all-out and make a bunch of spooky cocktails, but why? It’s fall. Just buy a bunch of pumpkin beer. If you want to make your own witch’s brew, keep it simple with an autumnal sangria. All you need is some white wine, some pumpkin spice, fresh apples, and pears, plus 1/4 cup of rum for each bottle of wine. Put the wine and rum into a plastic pumpkin or cauldron from the dollar store, cut up the fruit, add in a dash of spice, and you have a simple, seasonal cocktail.
Candy, of course! You could bake some spooky cookies or bake a cake, but Halloween is the candy holiday. Just put out bowls of the most popular Halloween candies and your guests will be more than delighted.
No party is complete without some other activity, and even a lazy party can use some details. Give your guests some pumpkins to decorate. Set out paints and permanent markers for easy jack-o’-lanterns that can double as party favors. You can also go old school with an apple bobbing game. Impress your guests by explaining that bobbing for apples once had a lot in common with spin-the-bottle — and then wow them with these 13 spooky Halloween facts.