Ah, fall is upon us yet again. And what does that mean? After reading these party ideas, get out your costumes, rake the leaves, and carve those pumpkins, because . . .
1948: It’s Halloween Party Time!
Spooky Welcome: The hostess or chairman of the committee should greet the guests one at a time, in order to give them a novel hand-shake. An old glove is stuffed with cotton and a short stick, which is held by the hostess inside a coat-sleeve. When the unsuspecting guest takes hold of the gloved hand extended to greet him it comes off in his grasp.
Ghost Story: Secure a copy of Ellis Parker Butler’s delightful story, “They Ain’t No Ghosts”; and have it narrated by a good speaker, while all lights are extinguished.
Goofy Graveyard: In a room apart from the general festivities arrange a woodland scene, with lights covered with blue paper, and tombstones of white cardboard, having the sides and top folded back about two inches to give the effect of depth, some having curved tops and some being square. The jingles are clearly printed with black crayon. Invite all the guests to stroll through the place, while someone behind the scenes makes sounds of moaning and
Source: Githens, Harry. Everybody’s Party Book. Franklin, Ohio: Eldridge Entertainment House, 1948.
~ pp. 128, 130-31 ~
1963: Spooke Party
Not necessarily for Halloween, you understand, but very appropriate then. Masks are a must, and the best kind for this party is made from a pillowcase with slits cut for eyes, mouth and breathing space ~ very scary with no face marked on at all, possibly very funny if you mark once with felt-tipped ink pens, and very pretty if you add glitter for eye shadow, upholstery fringe for eyelashes, sew on beads for earrings and a necklace. Add a hank of thick black cotton rug yarn and you could be Cleopatra.
Have a cauldron of water bubbling in the fireplace, on a grill or on the kitchen stove to cook frankfurters in, and let each guest spear his own with a long-handled fork or sharpened branch. Relishes, hot-dog rolls, baked beans and other yummies team with the witches’ brew of cider or orange-cranberry punch.
Ghost stories (if you’re low on these, try the library), bobbing for apples carved with the initial of your true love’s first name, and fortunetelling add to the fun. If one of your friends has the gift of fast, comic patter, he might be the fortuneteller; or you might write simple funny predictions in plain old milk on slips of paper and let each guest pass his slip over a candle flame to read the message. (Messages? “You will be asked to baby-sit next Thursday.” “Richie awaits you.” “You will own a basset hound before you are 30.” “There is a cloud in your life at present, but it has a silver lining.” “Within seven years a sports car will be made with your initials on it.” “You will get through high school by the time you are 25.”)
A good game to play is “Which Witch is Which?” Hang a sheet across a doorway, allowing just enough room for feet and ankles to be seen. Each girl appears barefoot ~ one girl at a time. The one who keeps the boys guessing longest is the winner.
Source: Haupt, Enid H. The Seventeen Book of Etiquette & Entertaining. New York: David McKay Company, Inc., 1963.
~ pp. 274-75 ~