Are your kids over trick-or-treating this year?



11 trick-or-treating alternatives for teens

teens, Halloween, trick-or-treat, movies, corn maze

There comes a time in every kids' life when the thrill of trick-or- treating seems dim. But that doesn't mean you have to let go of having fun on Halloween. There are still plenty of things to do with your teen or tween on Halloween night that does not require walking for hours knocking on doors in your neighborhood. There are plenty of older kids still excited to dress up and head out for candy. But what if your kid is just over it? How do you spend your Halloween night then?

Here are 11 alternatives to trick or treating for your teen or tween:

1. Host a spooky movie night at home. Settle in for the night with your teen or let them invite a few friends over to make snacks and watch a thriller from the comfort of your couch.

2. Book an escape room adventure. Skip hitting the streets all together and get your adrenaline pumping as a team trying to find your way out of a locked room or put your heads together to solve difficult puzzles.

3. Take a haunted hayride after dark or try not to get lost in a haunted corn maze at a local farm. The Headless Horseman in Port Ewen offers a death-defying night of terror. (It's so spooky, it comes with a warning about disturbing scenes). KevinMcCurdy's Haunted Mansion in Wappingers Falls also boasts a frighteningly good time for everyone.


4. Grab tickets to a murder mystery dinner show if your kids are old enough. Go as a family or let kids take along some friends for a thrilling night out.

5. Take a spooky walk through the Great Jack O'Lantern Blaze at Van Cortlandt Manor. Take a low-key stroll passed over 7,000 carved pumpkins lighting the darkness. The website boasts a life-sized carousel and a Statue of Liberty made from you guessed it - pumpkins! It's an awe-inspiring visit and worth skipping the sweets.

6. Carve pumpkins together. Not of fan of crowds, or over-the-top displays? There is nothing wrong with staying in to carve pumpkins with your young tween. Order some take out and invite the cousins and extended family over to carve out some family fun.

7. Let teens hand out candy to younger trick-or-treaters. If your kiddo isn't a fan of grabbing candy, but still likes the festivities, enlist their help handing out treats to the kids that come to the door. It makes for an easier night and you know they are safe at home.

8. Create a haunted house in your front yard and give them the starring role. 

9. Host a Halloween party at your house and invite some friends. Your tween can even help pick the playlist. Throw in some old school games like bobbing for apples and a donut eating contest to keep it lively and fun.

10. Book a haunted cemetery tour like the one at St. James Episcopal Church in Hyde Park. The tours are family friendly, living history tours and meant to be entertaining. For a notch above creepy, travel to Sleepy Hollow for a Murder and Mayhem lantern led graveyard tour.

11. Deliver treats to a local nursing home or shelter where children may be staying. If you have a kid that is more interested in making sure others have a good time, this might be a perfect way to feel festive this Halloween. They can gather non-candy prizes to hand out and make someone else's night special.

It can feel bittersweet when our kids decide to let go of this childhood tradition. But it gives them a chance to try out new things with their growing sense of independence and maturity. And it gives us parents a chance to ease into the next season of parenthood. Thankfully there are plenty of chocolate treats to sooth us during this transition.

Roxanne Ferber is a twin mom, blogger and freelance writer living in Saugerties. Someone stole her Teal Pumpkin filled with non-candy treats last Halloween, and it still haunts her.