Trick-or-Treating, Scary Stories and the Jersey Devil: Why You’ll Love Halloween Camping
Looking for a new Halloween tradition? Grab your family and head to the campground. Halloween camping is a great way to embrace the season. Decorate a campsite, sit by a bonfire and go Trick-or-Treating around the campground; Halloween’s great traditions take on a new, rustic flair when they’re done out of doors. Whether you’re looking to spot spirits from the beyond or simply take in the crisp fall air, you’ll love this new-old take on Halloween.
- To start planning your trip, call your favorite campsite; many will have special activities planned for the weekend and week around Halloween. Holiday weekends tend to be more crowded, so make sure you reserve a spot well in advance, or else you may miss out on the fun.
- While reserving your campsite, be sure to ask if there are any decorating restrictions. Once you know the ground rules, you can build excitement with the family by creating decorations, or even planning a theme for your whole area. If in an RV or camper, use cutouts and wreaths meant for front doors. Not only will decorating your camper’s door look cute, it will let other campers know if you are participating in campground trick-or-treating. Don’t forget, windows are great places for orange and purple lights, synthetic webs with a spider or two and maybe even a creepy mask hung against the glass to stare at passersby.
- Tent or RV campers can decorate their site with simple outdoor Halloween decorations that turn the festivities up a notch or two. Halloween-themed string lights are a super easy way to liven up the site. Hang lights around the tent or camper, or even string a circle on the ground around the site perimeter. For the crafty camper, make little ghosts to hang out of nearby trees. All you need are squares of white fabric (size is up to you), small foam balls or something to stuff the ghost “head” with, a black marker and string. Put the ball or stuffing in the center, gather up the corners and tie a knot just below the stuffing. Make eyes and a mouth with the marker with three dots and hang on a branch with the extra string. Less crafty folks can purchase decorations, and strategically placed ghoulish masks will make even the toughest camper jump.
- Since you’re out in nature anyway, use natural items to decorate with for a classic All Hallows’ Eve feel. Spend the afternoon carving silly jack-o-lanterns. In the evening, light them with a real candle or a flickering battery-powered option. Gourds and hay bales can also make for cute decor. Playing off the Autumn season makes it less frightening for smaller children, too.
- Once the sun goes down and every breeze and noise causes an unsettling chill, it’s time to enjoy the labors of your decorating work. If your campground is hosting trick-or-treating, choose costumes for yourself and children that are warm enough to ward off the fall chill. It’s a good idea to wear tennis shoes or boots while walking from site to site; the uneven campsite paths aren’t as stable as your neighborhood’s sidewalk. Don’t let children go alone, even if the site is small. Woods can be confusing, especially at night, and children could become lost. A flashlight will help to illuminate your path, too.
- If the campground isn’t hosting formal trick-or-treating, do a candy hunt at dusk instead. Fill small or medium-sized plastic pumpkins with candy and hide around your campsite. Your children don’t miss out on the candy, and you have a fun activity to make your Halloween evening special. Just be sure to remember where you placed each pumpkin and number the bottoms so you know all were found; you don’t want the area critters joining you for Halloween.
- Once back at the campsite, a campfire will set the mood perfectly. Use chocolate gathered from trick-or-treating (or bring your own) to make s’mores. Once everyone has eaten their fair share of sweets, start the spooky stories. You couldn’t ask for a better setting for telling urban legends and creepy tales. Also, see if the park is putting on any late-night ghost walks, concerts or other events.
Campsites with the Jersey Devil & More
For braver souls, test your nerve by staying at a campsite that is haunted, cursed or said to be visited by otherworldly creatures. Located roughly 13 miles east of Roswell, New Mexico, Bottomless Lakes State Park Campground has had its fair share of reports of alien sightings. Atlantic Blueberry Hill in Port Republic, New Jersey is said to be home of the Jersey Devil, a flying hooved creature that has lived in legend for more than 200 years, and other sinister creatures. The site of one of the bloodiest battles ever, camping in Gettysburg Battlefield in Pennsylvania not only offers Halloween-themed weekends, but you can also take part in a late-night ghost walk. Even if you don’t see apparitions, aliens or other supernatural creatures, all of these parks offer great views and outdoor enjoyment.
Choosing to go camping for Halloween brings nature’s mysteries and the spookiness of the holiday together perfectly. Add a new element to your celebration by going camping for Halloween.
- Have you ever gone camping for Halloween?
- What activities did you do? Would you go again?
Read More Halloween Blogs & Guides
° How To Throw A Theme Or Costume Party
° Halloween Safety Tips: Stay Safe No Matter What Your Holiday Plans Are
° Trunk-or-Treat, Halloween Carnivals and other Trick-or-Treating Alternatives
° Swaps, Crafts and Sales: What to Do with Old Pet Costumes