Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Sorry, I just lost my head for a moment.

After a much needed respite from the toils of Halloween and the rigors of having to dismantle the haunted house, the graveyard, and the decorations (inside and out) and store it all away, I am finally back.

Halloween was a tremendous success! We broke our previous record for Trick-or-Treaters - set last year at 75 - by giving out our hand-made treat bags to 101 TOTs! The treat bags this year were little treasure pouches tied with twine, each consisting of gold coins (gum), copper coins (chocolate), pearls (jelly-beans), and other various goodies. The weather held up beautifully with the temperature topping out at a balmy 65 degrees, with the low only coming in at around 50. I didn't even have to wear a jacket as my cape kept me plenty warm. There was no wind (a minor miracle in Kasson, MN) and no rain.

We were a little worried about vandals causing mischief that night, as long-time neighbors mentioned that kids get a little crazy when Halloween is on a Friday night. I had some trouble last year on Halloween with a couple neighborhood kids threatening to trash my graveyard after I went in for the night. I actually ended up taking most of it down that night, which wasn't fun. However, this year we had no problems at all, and everything ran very smoothly. The only problem we ran into the entire night was when my wife took our daughter out to finish up trick-or-treating and I was left with our son, Chunk. For 45 minutes during the busiest part of the evening I was holding his chunky butt while wearing a giant foam pumpkin on my head, running the fog machine, and handing out treat bags to TOTs. It was a little overwhelming, but I got through it. Hopefully next year Grandma and Grandpa can come up from Iowa to help out!

Other notes of interest: I used dry ice in the fog chiller this year rather than filling it to the top with regular ice. I wasn't sure how this would work or how long the dry ice would last, but I was extremely pleased with the results. A ten pound block of dry ice lasted the entire night and held the fog down low much better than regular ice. I will be using dry ice every Halloween from here on out! Also, the 'Tomb of Dracula' haunted house was a smashing success! While there is no official tally, we got quite a few kids (and grown-ups) to go through, and each thought it was pretty impressive. We got quite a few "you always have the best house in town" comments, and there were A LOT of cars dropping kids off just so they could trick-or-treat at our house (which we later learned caused some angst with a couple of our neighbors, as the kids hit all the other houses after they're done with ours - so these people had to give out more candy, boo-hoo...)

Anyway - it was a great Halloween night - one of the best ever - and definitely sets the bar high for next year. I promise I will get more pics up as soon as I can, and you have my word that there won't be such a long delay between posts from now on!

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