Making simple Halloween treats is a beautiful way for families to spend time with loved ones of all ages while giving older people something to do on a holiday that we typically consider child’s play.
Making a variety of treats can be an enjoyable Halloween activity for seniors and their families since it gives people a chance to reminisce.
This article will discuss ideas for planning a Halloween party for seniors, the elderly, their caregivers, or even facility recreation managers, including treats, games, music to play, and movies to watch.
So skip the tricks this Halloween and focus on the sweets to have a fantastic day with your loved ones!
How to Plan a Halloween Party for Seniors
Every year, people of all ages look forward to Halloween. This holiday stands out from the rest thanks to its costumes, candy, haunted houses, and festive parties.
But how can you support an older person in ensuring a secure, joyful, and healthy Halloween celebration?
Use the following tips to plan a senior-friendly Halloween party for your loved one:
1. Choose Healthy Treats to Haunt Your Home and Candy Bowl
Make sure you have healthy sweets available whether you want a low-key evening at home with your loved one or give out gifts to trick-or-treaters.
Choose a holiday treat that is fun to eat but doesn’t vary too far from your loved one’s diet. As a special treat, you can enjoy some dark chocolate; it has fewer calories and fat than milk chocolate and even has anti-inflammatory antioxidants.
Provide healthy topping alternatives to create their delicious creations, such as granola, finely chopped nuts, and fruit. This will increase their consumption of protein, dietary fiber, vitamin C, potassium, and other nutrients.
2. Plan Your “Paranormal” Activities Appropriately
It’s a terrific way to get everyone in the Halloween mood to get your loved ones involved, but before you make any plans, thoroughly review the latest suggestions for events, get-togethers, and holidays.
Try to practice consideration when organizing Halloween parties for seniors. Some older people might not get along with kids or be able to manage the commotion.
This might be particularly necessary for family members with dementia, so hang a clearly visible message in your driveway or front door that reads, “Sorry, no more candy,” or “No trick-or-treaters, please.”
Most trick-or-treaters start their rounds at sunset or right as it becomes dark, which may also be when the symptoms of sundowning begin to appear.
Confusion and agitation are frequently worsened at this time of day for an older person with Alzheimer’s disease or other types of dementia.
It can be exceedingly uncomfortable and frightening when there is excessive noise, when strangers come and depart, and when people are dressed up.
Making healthy sweets with your family, watching a not-too-scary movie, and doing easy holiday crafts can all serve as excellent low-key distraction activities.
If you decide to go trick-or-treating with a loved one, keep an eye on their mood and comfort level throughout the evening.
3. Keep Seasonal Decor Spooky Yet Safe
People can decorate houses with pumpkins, leaf wreaths, cinnamon brooms, and other seasonal decorations to mark the peak of the fall season, or you can transform them into ominous castles with cobwebs, scary figurines, bats, and spiders.
No matter how you choose to decorate, ensure none of these things provide a fire or tripping risk. One of the greatest ways to accomplish this is to carefully decorate the inside while adding more substantial decorations to the yard.
Decorating might not be an option if your loved one has dementia and is prone to hallucinations, delusions, or paranoia. Decorations that we might consider subtle may confuse an older person with cognitive impairment or cast shadows that are uncomfortable or bothersome.
The processing of sensory stimulation by the brains of dementia patients might be frightening or overpowering. As the one who knows your loved one best, decorate sensibly and responsibly.
4. Make Costumes Creative and Comfortable
Halloween parties can be made better for some people by dressing up. Help your loved one make a costume if they want to and can, and let them wear it on Halloween. Remember that complex clothing may make it challenging to manage trips to the bathroom or to walk.
Halloween costumes for seniors should ideally be secure and at ease and shouldn’t interfere with your caregiving responsibilities. By doing this, you may both enjoy the party without any trouble.
See our suggested Halloween costumes for seniors and the elderly here.
Halloween Treats, Snacks, and Food
Even for seniors managing diabetes or limiting their sugar consumption, there are many fun and simple Halloween activities to make.
It may initially seem undesirable to substitute healthy holiday sweets for usual snacks. Numerous subtle substitutions for unhealthy foods are still suitable and improve the dish with little research.
No matter how nutritious a dessert may be, it’s important to remember that portion control is still essential to preventing holiday feast weight gain.
Want to experience a genuinely frightening Halloween? Check this list of some treats, snacks, and food for Halloween parties for seniors and the elderly:
1. Grilled Cheese Jack-O-Lanterns
The typical grilled cheese sandwich is a playful twist that seniors could enjoy creating and eating. It would be best to use whole-grain bread and low-fat cheese and cut the bread into jack-o-lantern shapes to make the grilled cheese lanterns nutritious.
This Halloween treat contains protein, calcium, and healthy fats that help the body fight off the brain toxins contributing to dementia, Alzheimer’s disease, and other mental conditions.
2. Monster Pie
This delightful dessert contains no unhealthy ingredients or too many calories. To make a monster pie, you will require avocados, kiwis, almond milk, bananas, oats, and raisins.
Avocados offer seniors good fats that help them fight against toxins. The fruits in monster pie have fibers that improve emotional health and reduce blood pressure.
3. Haunted Apples
Although giving up caramel apples could be challenging for your loved one, haunting apples are a wholesome substitute.
You can combine dark chocolate and apples to make an antioxidant-rich treat that will benefit your loved one’s heart and prevent stroke or heart attack.
It would help if you dipped the red or green apples into melted dark chocolate chips to make this delicacy. Then, insert Halloween decorations into the apples to give them a festive vibe.
4. Ghost Eggs
This simple treat offers the vitamins and calcium your bones need to grow more robust, flexible, and balanced.
You will need to boil eggs before using a black, food-safe ink pen to decorate the eggs to produce ghost eggs.
5. Spiders on a Log
This delicious Halloween treat may be made by seniors using celery, peanut butter, and plastic spiders.
This low-calorie delicacy might aid in weight control and preventing obesity in your loved one.
The fiber required to encourage a healthy digestive system is in the ingredients needed to make spiders on a log.
6. Jack-o-Lantern Clementine
Clementine oranges and a black, food-safe ink pen are all needed to make this treat. You can make this treat with the whole family, improving their mood and reducing their tension.
Seniors and the elderly could consequently lower their chances of developing depression. Seniors can get essential nutrients from clementine oranges, including magnesium, potassium, folate, and calcium.
7. Haunted Pizza
There are various ways to transform pizza for your loved one into a healthy snack, even though it is traditionally regarded as unhealthy food.
You will need whole-wheat pizza dough and reduced-fat cheese to make this haunting pizza. Use ghost and other Halloween cookie cutters to cut the cheese into spooky and fun shapes.
Because the cheese ghosts are little, you can regulate their portion size, which is an intelligent approach to tracking calories and keeping a healthy weight.
8. Snake Dip
The hummus, olive oil, chickpeas, and other nutritious ingredients in this Halloween treat are beneficial to the health of your loved one.
This treat provides your loved one with the protein, fiber, folate, and healthy fats needed for a healthy body.
You only need hummus as the base, black olives for the body, and carrots for the tongue to make snake dip.
9. Spooky Turkey & Veggie Stuffed Bell Peppers
Consider creating a Halloween-themed supper, including adorable stuffed bell peppers instead of just sweets and snacks.
Including zucchini, broccoli, tomatoes, and onions, this food makes it pleasant to consume vegetables (and spooky).
10. Monster Wraps
These beautiful wraps are the perfect Halloween treat for lunchtime. You may customize them to contain your preferred vegetables, a layer of hummus, and a lean protein for a meal that is both frightening and nutritious.
Halloween Crafts/Activities for Seniors
Seniors with dementia, including Alzheimer’s, often respond positively to food-related activities. It is a fantastic idea to make snack time entertaining to engage their minds.
Even yet, there are plenty of non-food-related Halloween activities for seniors that you can participate in if you don’t have a sweet taste.
Simple and fun Halloween crafts are ideal for senior citizens. The best arts for seniors include simple instructions and significant pieces.
Here are some of the easy Halloween crafts and activities for seniors and the elderly:
1. No-Sew Shirt Sleeve Pumpkin
The materials for this lovely and straightforward No-Sew Shirt Sleeve Pumpkin are a long-sleeved shirt, some twine, and artificial leaves. It’s the ideal pumpkin to display in space or a gathering place.
The following materials are required to create this rustic, country-themed, rustic pumpkin:
- An old long-sleeved shirt (fall colors will look the best)
- Rubber bands
- Fiberfill to stuff your pumpkin
- Optional: Artificial fall leaves
2. Jewel-Covered Bling Pumpkin
Everyone enjoys bling, right? These jewel-covered pumpkins make incredible holiday decorations for senior citizens’ homes and apartments.
To complete this glittering craft, you will need:
- Black spray paint
- One plastic pumpkin
- Assorted craft jewels
- Using large jewels, which are simpler to handle, is the secret to making this Halloween craft an excellent exercise for seniors. Use craft jewels with adhesive backs for the best results and reduce work tasks. Still, having clear-drying glue on hand is smart if the gems decide not to adhere to the pumpkin.
Additionally, plastic pumpkins are advised because they are lighter than real ones and may be saved and used year after year as decorations. Spray paint the pumpkins should be done in a well-ventilated area with newspaper down to protect surfaces.
3. Mummy Candy Cans
The ideal treat for tiny trick-or-treaters is these creepy-cute little mummies. Before starting, ensure that the cans are ready for seniors and that there are no exposed metal pieces because this project calls for pliers. Please make sure you spray paint in a space that has good ventilation.
You will need:
- Any size of clean, empty tin can
- Matte or semi-gloss black spray paint
- Googly eyes
- Hot glue gun
If none of those ideas were quite what you were looking for, see our full list of Halloween crafts for seniors and the elderly here.
Halloween Games To Play
Halloween is spooky and good fun for kids and adults of all ages, with everything from creepy crawlies to candy and costumes.
Who doesn’t enjoy getting dressed, making ridiculous faces, and enjoying delicious treats? And even better, who doesn’t enjoy getting together to celebrate, engage in fun activities, and let loose?
Here are some entertaining Halloween games for older adults that will ensure everyone can participate and have a spooky good time if you’re seeking imaginative ideas to make your Halloween party something terrifyingly incredible:
1. Halloween Trivia
Have fun with your loved ones while teaching them interesting Halloween-related facts.
If you are a movie enthusiast, consider having a Halloween Movie Trivia contest where participants describe a well-known movie for others to recognize.
2. Pumpkin Bocce
You may play this game both inside and outside. Additionally, the sport is an excellent way to promote upper body exercise and freedom of movement.
Buy a few small pumpkins and one giant pumpkin. You should place a designated starting line up to six feet away from the giant pumpkin.
Let each participant roll their tiny pumpkin toward the giant pumpkin—the person who gets the closest wins.
3. Halloween Bingo
Bingo with a Halloween theme is a calmer game that is vibrant and easy to play, whether you’re looking for sit-down Halloween activities or simple games for seniors with dementia.
You can create your bingo cards or choose from a variety of ones that are accessible online. It’s simple to keep playing this game until everyone shouts “bingo!” at least once, so it’s enjoyable.
4. Mummy Wrap
Take some toilet paper rolls and willing participants for the Mummy Wrap, when seniors compete to see who can wrap their mummy up quickly.
Seniors who have trouble standing for an extended period (or who cannot stand) can sit and serve as the mummy for others to wrap if you are playing with them.
If that is the case, you can change these rules so that they must wrap only the mummy’s arms and head.
5. Hot Pumpkin
This is a simple party game for senior citizens who may not be very active.
A pumpkin, small pumpkin, or orange balloon is tossed to one another in this variation of Hot Potato until the music stops.
The player is out once the music stops, and you keep playing until only one person is left.
We have even more Halloween themed games for older adults here.
Halloween Songs and Music to Play
You’ve prepared a spooky outfit, mysterious lights, and cobwebs for your Halloween party. What about that playlist, though?
Anyway, you shouldn’t worry about your playlist. Here are the top frightening terrifying, and ghostly Halloween songs to listen to all night:
- ‘Thriller’ by Michael Jackson
- ‘This is Halloween’ by Danny Elfman
- ‘Season of the Witch’ by Donovan
- ‘I Put a Spell On You (Remix)’ by Screamin’ Jay Hawkins
- ‘Surfin’ Dead’ by The Cramps
- ‘Ghost Town’ by The Specials
- ‘Pet Sematary’ by The Ramones
- ‘Somebody’s Watching Me’ by Rockwell
- ‘Boris the Spider’ by The Who
- ‘Supernature’ by Cerrone
- ‘Welcome to my Nightmare’ by Alice Cooper
- ‘Halloween’ by The Misfits
- ‘Red Right Hand’ by Nick Cave and the Bad Seeds
- ‘Monster’ by Kanye West
- ‘Vampires’ by DJ Touche
- ‘Bela Lugosi’s Dead’ by Bauhaus
- ‘People are Strange’ by Echo and the Bunnymen
- ‘Country Death Song’ by Violent Femmes
- ‘Hell’s Bells’ by AC/DC
- ‘Vampire Nightclub’ by Art Department
- ‘Tubular Bells Part 1’ by Mike Oldfield
- ‘Suspiria’ by Goblin
- ‘Werewolves of London’ by Warren Zevon
- ‘Monster Mash’ by Bobby ‘Boris’ Pickett & the Crypt-Kickers
- ‘(Don’t Fear) The Reaper’ by Blue Öyster Cult
- ‘Ghostbusters’ by Ray Parker Jr.
- ‘Psycho Killer’ by Talking Heads
- ‘Dracula’ by Gorillaz
- ‘Living Dead Girl’ by Rob Zombie
- ‘A Nightmare on My Street’ by DJ Jazzy Jeff and the Fresh Prince
Halloween Movies to Watch
Halloween wouldn’t be without the accompanying movies, just as Christmas needs its music and Valentine’s Day has its chocolates.
Undoubtedly, the candy apples, costumes, and jack-o-lanterns are brilliant. But how do you create the right vibe?
Nothing gets you in the mood for the Halloween season like a movie night with the best chainsaw-wielding, spellbinding, hair-raising movies.
Anyone may enjoy a good Halloween movie—some of them aren’t even frightening—you don’t have to be a horror genre fan!
1. It’s the Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown (1966)
This is a timeless film that the whole family will love. Snoopy and the crew have been putting us in the Halloween mood for over 50 years. You might even get flashbacks to your childhood trick-or-treating memories after seeing the cartoon.
Before the entire family gathered on the couch to watch this animated special featuring the Peanuts gang, the Halloween season isn’t Halloween for many people. Will this year’s Great Pumpkin make an appearance?
2. Young Frankenstein (1974)
The jokes in this outstanding Mel Brooks parody, hailed as one of the greatest films of all time (period), are still relevant today.
3. Hocus Pocus (1993)
With Hocus Pocus, you can’t go wrong. This charming classic is the perfect Disney Halloween film, making chatty black cats and silly witches the peak of Halloween entertainment.
4. Beetlejuice (1988)
Beetlejuice, a Tim Burton creation, is a PG-13 horror movie about a married couple who are left to haunt their house in the afterlife. It’s one of the few films that makes you want to believe that the house’s ghosts are the good guys.
5. Coraline (2009)
Follow the young adventurer Coraline as she enters another universe and encounters characters who seem somewhat similar to those in her ordinary world but somewhat off (even as they promise her everything she wants).
Coraline is intended for children, but even adults may find its creepy button eyes frightening.
6. Dracula (1931)
Nothing is more iconic than Bela Lugosi’s portrayal of the real Count Dracula. Here is where to look to find the recognizable Universal monsters.
7. Ghostbusters (1984)
This is a fantastic choice for a mixed-age group because it is hilarious and spooky (hopefully not too terrifying). The prequel, the remake, and Ghostbusters: Afterlife from a year ago make it a month-long Ghostbusters marathon.
8. The Addams Family (1991)
This family-friendly classic is a simple pick for a frightful Halloween movie night that won’t give you nightmares. There is a more modern animated version with a road trip-themed sequel.
Still, for the chemistry between Raul Julia and Anjelica Houston, nothing compares to the original and its 1993 sequel, Addams Family Values.
9. Practical Magic (1998)
Sandra Bullock and Nicole Kidman as identical witch sisters? Count us in. Whoever wants a sweet, lovelorn Halloween should watch this lovely cult classic rom-com.
10. The Nightmare Before Christmas (1993)
Whether this timeless movie belongs in the Halloween or Christmas category is disputed. In either case, Tim Burton’s fantastical universe is delightful. So, from October through December, perhaps watch it once every week?
Every holiday should be about celebrating love and having fun with the family. Even during Halloween parties, we should be inventive with every ghoulish trick, treat, game, song, and movie. Don’t forget to include a party favor or small Halloween-themed gift for each party-goer!
We hope this article will make your family, including seniors, the elderly, their caregivers, or even facility recreation managers, laugh and have some fun celebrating Halloween parties. Let us know if you have other traditions or suggestions to share in the comments below!
We wish you a lot of fantastic and creepy activities — have a Happy Halloween!