questionshow do i make the neighbhorhood kids love me?

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Best thing is, find out from neighbors how many kids trick or treat so that you will have enough candy.

I am not one to care about being the best. I just hate running out of candy.

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It may not be about the best treats, but about the best decorations and/or having a haunted house. But since you just moved in and haven't established a trusting relationship with the parentals yet and having a haunted house might not go over so well.

Also the big candy bars can get quite expensive. And if you give them one year and smaller ones the next, they will remember it.

I would go with getting LOTS of cheap candy and giving each child a handful of it.

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@wootfast: I was actually thinking about doing that.

@hobbit: I have to be the best, such is life. Or at least try, lol

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A well decorated exterior. Dry ice in a jack O lantern. Mood music. I actually have spoOooOOky cd muzak. Try not to be too scary or the little kids won't want to come up. ie: dressing as a scare crow/monster and jumping out at the kids when they approach.
Don't run out of candy, candy, candy. If you are having fun, they kids will have fun.

Oh and don't get too pissed of at the teenagers. They just want free candy.
At my house, the rule is - no costume, no candy. And no, your football uniform or your cheerleader outfit ain't no dang costume! (applies to the older kids, who should know better)

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I only have one word - CHOCOLATE (even if it is just the little bite size pieces).

That is what my boys and most of my neighborhood kids wanted. A lot of the neighbors gave out handfuls of candy but it was the Smarties, Laffy Taffy, and Jolly Rancher mix. The comments I heard from the kids as I closed the door were "Wow, Snickers", "They give chocolate", "They let me pick which ones I wanted" etc. I start loading up on chocolate at the beginning of October and hit every local candy sale. I also offer toys in case they don't want candy. I let the kids pick what they want.

vote-for4vote-against

Let's see here are some of our greatest hits.

Massive spiders on massive spider webs, strobe lit with talking screaming skulls on pikes activated when someone passes by.

Fog machine placed behind a potted plant and firing it right in front of their feet.(Scares the little ones to death, they have to be carried to the door)

Suspend a massive spider web in front of your door and suspend bats on springs from it, fill with fog and you get a good yelp out of people.

Replace your walkway lighting with red leds and all your outdoor lighting with red lights(CFLs work best). DO NOT replace with black lights, no one thinks you are home that way.

Also keep in mind your neighborhood. The community we used to live in, we were the house to go to and there were lots of children in the neighborhood and it was an easy area to walk. Where we live now, though we are close to the elementary school, very few kids trick or treat our area. Talking to some parents, they don't like taking out their kids.

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Get a large bucket, fill it with cheap candy. Place it by your door. Between the candy and the driveway, put one of those infared sensors that "bark" when they approach the candy. Get a video camera, enjoy the show.

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Not going to lie - that question sort of reminds me of one of the only Family Guy episodes I ever saw, with the creepy old man (pedophile)... :D

Anyone ever seen The Onion News Network video?
http://www.theonion.com/video/expedophile-shares-tips-on-how-to-make-your-kids-l,14357/

My condolences, @dcalotta. Not meaning to hijack, or question your propriety in society - just funny the way that question popped out.

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@dcalotta: Here's what I used to do (and I was the most popular house in the neighborhood, even more than the two haunted houses). First, get a selection of candy, and you don't need to get big candy bars, just get the traditional ones. Get Nerds (or whatever else is popular now) in addition to chocolate. Not all kids like chocolate.

I have a large cast iron cauldron, a long black dress, a cloak, and a nice crooked staff. My hair is naturally gray, and I make up to look even older and scarier. No silly blood, no fake teeth, just my own sweet and winsome personality. I can make a scary shriek+cackle that can be heard to the end of the block. I fill the cauldron with dead leaves, and under it is the candy. They have to reach through the leaves to get to the candy. My line is usually something like "Reach in, my dears, you might find a nice surprise at the bottom" (and surprise is three syllables long)...

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@dcalotta: ...I also tell them that "I love little children. They're so delicious." Lots of scary laughing, and I also stay hunched over. Between the cloak, the scary voice, and the eyeshadow under the eyes, it's a good time. In almost twenty years of doing this, I've frightened a total of two children, one that recovered when I took off the conical hat straightened up, and said "Look, I'm just a mommy, like yours, it's okay" and one that would not be comforted (she was very young). Mostly they love it. I've had them come back multiple times, dragging their friends, so that they could prove they'd met a witch.

I love Halloween, and one of my few regrets about living where I do is that it isn't worth dressing up, since I never see more than 10 kids in the night.

Dress up. Make the effort. Be goofy. Everyone gives out candy, and after the first few houses, the kids don't remember who gave what. They just remember who was fun. Fun is good. I love it. It's my favorite thing.

vote-for5vote-against

@dcalotta: I almost forgot the most important thing. You need to talk to your neighbors, right now, and ask whether or not you'll even see trick or treaters, and if so, how many. When I lived in Canoga Park, CA, we averaged 300-500 children (many of them coming in car loads from poorer and less safe neighborhoods, and actually, we didn't mind). Where I am now, a bag of candy is almost overkill.

Also, do not give out homemade treats. Parents will just throw them away.

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Like shrdlu I used to be in "The Valley" (former Reseda resident)and would have 200+ kids that were driven in for trick-or-treating, now in WA we might get 30-40 kids. So, definitely talk to the neighbors to find out what kind of trick-or-treat traffic you will be having, so that you can be prepared.

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@shrdlu: I live in a neighborhood that borders some gang activity. Nothing in the immediate area, but definitely not that far away. As a result I have not seen trick or treaters in the 20 years I've been here. I think most parents take their kids to halloween parties at the local recreation centers and churches (Yeah, there are actually cool non-fundy churches that aren't frightened by Halloween!).

So, I'll buy a bag of candy "just in case", but I always make sure to buy something I really would want to eat, because, well, I end up eating it!

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I remember this was an issue when I moved here, I would just watch the kids walk past the house. If you do dress up, until you establish yourself sit in a chair, and don't be too scary. Well lit house in the back ground. Don't get disappointed if your first year or two starts slow, parents now drop kids off on my street now, the neighbors do not give very good candy so I blame me!

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We've always offered the parents something to drink. If the weather's chilly, we've been known to fire up the crockpot and serve spiced apple cider in disposable cups. We also park our butts out toward the end of the walkway with the candy and beverages. The dogs are always just wild wanting to get out and play with all the little "monsters."

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I live in a town home community and gets around 500-600 kids. It is a blast! Over the years, I've done what has been suggested here: lots of candy, great decorations outdoors, sit in a chair outside (the kids don't have to walk up the steps and risk falling) and I always dress up.

One thing that has not been mentioned, I always have treats for the dogs. So many of my neighbors dress their dogs up bring them around with the kids, and they always get a kick out of the fact that the dogs get recognized as well!

I've got a meeting to head to now, but when I get back I will tell you about a fun prank I pulled on some kids last year!

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@marcoselmalo: Like, Oh mah gawd! Like, like, gag me with a spoon. Like, like, like, you know? Like, like, like, like, no way!

I'd much rather shop at Nordstrom's. Their things are so much nicer. Let's take it back and get the more expensive one. Expensive is always better. I promise I'll only use your credit card for one thing.

Just remember, @marcoselmalo, you asked for that. Every single word above has come out of my daughter's mouth at some time or other, back when Valley Girls shopped at the Galleria (the one in Sherman Oaks, sadly changed over the years). Anyone who wants to know what it looked like in its glory days can see glimpses of it in the movie "Valley Girl" or get the full tour with Ahhhnold, in "Commando" (I love that movie).

[Sorry about gang activity; recommend offering to help with fun at local churches]

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for sure have awesome decorations. i know i'll always remember the houses that went all out on em.

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Okay, back from my meeting so here's the fun prank...

Buy a bag of fun size Hershey Bars, as well as a really big Hershey Bar. We got the ones that are bigger than a King size bar, usually available in the candy aisle for a few bucks.

When only two kids come up, tell them that you are having a costume contest; the winner gets multiple candy bars while the runner up only gets one. Then take your time to "judge" their costumes and make a big deal out of giving the first kid a handful of candy since they won the contest. By then, the other kid will be looking a little sad, and that is when you pull out the giant candy bar and tell them, "Here you go, you only get one."

continued...

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@shrdlu: Thanks for stepping in with the Valley talk. The only word I still use from there is Dude and it is stuck in my vocabulary records and comes out several times a day. I just can't seem to break the habit (thank heavens I have boys and they don't really mind).

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We did this a couple times last year and our last kids were a brother and sister, I'm guessing 8-10 years old. We gave the brother the handful of candy and he cheering a poking at his sister when we pulled out the giant bar for the sister. Her face lit up and she screamed she was so happy!

They ran off and we were already happy with her reaction. Then about fifteen minutes later she came running back to my house (in the rain), just to tell us, "I had to come back again and say thanks! You really made my night with that!" As you can imagine, that made our night for her to do that!

Good luck with whatever you plan! I hope you get lots of trick-or-treaters!

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You could give back their balls and frisbees that landed in your yard. :D

Sorry, the other suggestions were taken.

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You guys are the best.

I ordered myself a bit of Halloween themed silly bandz this morning and am plotting decor as we speak (in between 1040s...). I'm a bit limited since I'm in a condo, but I'll make due :)

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It's pretty easy to pull this one off.

Remove one of the sidewalk concrete panels on the way to your door. Dig down 5 feet, these are little ones after all, and line the pit with spikes or poisonous snakes. Whichever you prefer. Then papermache a gray concretey shelf which is ribbed by twigs and place on top of the hole.

For some reason nobody trick-or-treats my neighborhood... too many old fuddy duddies who turn the lights off and pretend to be away. Oh that and the previous pits of death.

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Haven't had a trick or treater at the house in five years or so. To far out of the way.

Gang issues in your area, I wouldn't be out. You would be surprised how many kids are packin today, and how old they are. They think it is cool when you pull out your gun and point it at the crowd (or shoot it at them), they call it thumpin the crowd. Talked to a kid today, 20 now, was locked up for aggravated assault. He and another guy were arguing so he pulled out his gun and shot him in the stomach twice. Then ran off leaving him lay there. Funny, he said that the two of them used to hang out and smoke weed together a lot.

Oh well, leave it to beaver was a TV show anyway.

Glad to see that some areas of the country still celebrate pagan holidays.

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I'm a Hot Wheels collector, so I always have some duplicate cars in my candy bowl. The kids have a choice between yet another piece of candy that they won't even eat, or something that they can play with for years.

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one year i ran out of candy, but for some reason that i cannot remember, had a bowl of nickles which i started giving out. someone must have run up and down the street telling the other kids that a crazy lady was giving out money. within about 30 seconds of the first nickle, i was surrounded 360 degrees by children. very popular treat, cash.

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I usually make up a little goody bag for the neighborhood kids, but I don't get many trick or treaters. Last year's goody bag had tiny tubs of Play-doh, 2 kinds of chocolate bars (milky way, kitkat, snickers, or twix were the options), two kinds of fruity non-chocolate candy (twizzlers, blow-pops, sour patch kids, and starburst were the options) and a plastic Halloween ring. The bags had two colors and I had presorted the Play-doh and rings so that only the pumpkin bags contained any that were pink. The kids loved the Play-doh. They were excited to know what color they got. However, I only got about 7-10 trick-or-treaters, and I think one kid came twice. So this year I bought $0.50 worth of on-sale Tootsie Pops and some Toy Story candy ($0.25 for the whole bag). I'll pick up some chocolate candy on sale somewhere and that'll probably be it. These kids are rotten and ungrateful. Half of them didn't even dress up.

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@theoneill555: Dude is Val for Aloha (in that it means many things). Dude? Dude. DU-U-U-UDE!

I should also add that I believe some parents drive their kids to the safer, nicer, richer neighborhoods in Eaglerock, Pasadena, and Glendale for Halloween. I wouldn't be surprised if some of the more enterprising kids without rides hike up to Mt. Washington.

I knew people who did this with their kids when I was a kid, but I always thought it was a little weird back then.

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@marcoselmalo: Politically correct or not, I always welcomed the children that came up over the Sepulveda Pass by the van load, from neighborhoods that were too dangerous to even allow a child to play outside, to ours. Most of my neighbors felt the same way. Those that didn't just left off their porch lights. I always had multiple sets of candy. Stuff for the very young, plenty of good, rot-your-teeth candy for the majority, and penny suckers for teenagers (unless the costume was VERY clever).

At my daughter's insistence, when Nerds had just come out as a candy, I bought about half Nerds, half other stuff. I had multiple ghosts, supermans, and princesses dancing with delight. I tasted a couple of them. NASTY. YUCK.

I miss having 300+ kids over for candy.