Hosting a Halloween bash can be stressful. There’s lots of details to plan, playlists to make, cleaning to do, and by the time you get everything ready you can feel like it’s time to hit the ol’ coffin. Moreover, there’s a lot of stuff happening on Halloween weekend. People get invited to lots of fun parties and every bar, brewery or club is throwing down.
That’s why this year my boyfriend and I decided to keep it simple by hosting a small Halloween Un-Happy Hour with family and close friends only. It was a fun way to see my favorite people and still have the flexibility of going out and doing something else later in the evening.
We chose an early start time – 5 pm – and made it clear on the invitation that cocktail hour would be done by 7. The gathering also served a dual purpose as a casual house warming party for our new place.
Instead of planning a rager and worrying if we had enough alcohol, we bought one case of beer, a red and white wine, and an easy rum punch that was more than enough for the dozen guests we had.
Party food was on theme, of course, and we didn’t stress over making everything from scratch. We served:
- Cocktail meatballs: the classic grape jelly/chili sauce blend
- Pumpkin face pizza bites: I took a can of pilsbury pizza dough, cut it into strips and baked it with cheese, sauce, and pepperoni in a silicone pumpkin face mold
- Mummy dogs: simple and fun
- Ghost cakes: Halloween themed cake pans are my jam
- Pumpkin puking guacamole: with cheese dip on top of course
- Veggie tray: $5 at Kroger and displayed in a 99 cent plastic haunted house tray
- Pecan Pie from O’Charley’s: because my boyfriend ordered a slice of pie for lunch and they accidentally gave him an entire pie?!
We had a great time dressing up, eating and drinking boos. It was so nice feeling relaxed and not worrying about whether or not someone was gonna puke all over my bathroom. Getting older isn’t a bad thing, ha.
After the un-happy hour ended we went with our neighbors to a Halloween party at a local brewery a couple blocks from our house. They had a GREAT, weird band called League of Space Pirates who had the most badass robot that sang along with them and told jokes. It was pretty rad.
So if you’re thinking you want to host more parties but really don’t want the chaos of a full fledged bash, I highly recommend a good, spooky happy hour. Because life’s too short to tire yourself out from trying to be Martha Stewart.