If you’ve read any of our recent posts, we would guess it’s fairly obvious to tell how excited we are about the season we’ve entered, and the holiday that is upon us. Here at our pumpkin patch and farm in Homer Glen, this is our favorite time of year. The air is crisp, the hot cider and chocolate are flowing, and the pumpkin chucker is…chucking.
In older posts, we’ve talked about carnival food from around the world and at home. We have a fantastic lineup of American classics here at Bengtson’s Pumpkin Festival. Choose from Fresh Apple Cider Donuts, Uncle Bub’s Award Winning BBQ, Wooden Paddle Pizza, El Taco Cocina, Cotton Candy, Funnel Cakes, House-made Kettle Corn, Roasted Sweet Corn and Pizza, The Food Barn (where you can find water, coffee, cider, chips, caramel apples, nachos, hot dogs, and more), and the Toasty Cheese Food Truck, for the best grilled cheese sandwich you’ve ever had.
In the post after, we talked about Halloween parties. We want to be a space that gives you advice and helpful tips about things beyond the fact that we have free parking and that kids 2 and under get in free (did we mention that fact yet?). While we are talking about it, come visit us before October 30th, as this year is the biggest and most improved in our 37 year history! We’ve got new rides, new attractions, along with the same old classics you and your family have grown to love.
Let’s get to the point, shall we? We want to continue to provide you with Halloween party ideas – party ideas that will save you money and provide a unique twist to your party as well. Keep reading if either of those prospects sound appealing to you!
A Group Of Bats Is Called A…
Colony! And a group of ravens is called an unkindness, or a “conspiracy”, depending on who you ask. Both are black, and so both will work well for this quick and easy craft that will provide you with a cute little decoration. You’ll need felt and a either a bat template or a raven template. Then cut out the shapes for the heads and bodies of whichever creature you prefer. Then attach a 6” piece of fishing line to the middle of each cut-out. Then hot-glue red or white eyes (we guess you’ll need a bit of construction for this part) to the bat. Use a hole punch if you want uniformity. Then you are ready to hang them up on a branch outside or your stairs inside. Maybe they would look great greeting people in the entryway, attached to the chandelier. The choice is yours!
Bug soaps are fun because they catch you off guard the first time you see them, and might even make some of your house guests jump when they think it’s a real bug inside some bar soap! To make these, you’ll need extra-clear soap base, plastic bug toys, and soap molds. Follow the instructions to begin to make the soap base, bringing it to 140 degrees F. Take your bug, put it face up in the mold, and pour that melted soap until you’ve reached the lid. Scrape off the excess with a knife, and let the molds sit overnight, and you are ready to add some flair to your bathrooms for the big party!
The Pumpkin Cooler
We like this one because it’s not limited to a Halloween party – you can use it for the entire fall season, even Thanksgiving! First, you need to find a trusty, massive pumpkin for to serve as your ice chest. The fun part is you get to just cut off the top third with a keyhole saw or a serrated knife. Then, as you’ve probably done tens of times, scrape out the pulp, seeds, and whatever else is inside. Get a glass or plastic bowl to fit inside the pumpkin so that the water doesn’t seep through the entire gourd and cause it to leak. If your bowl doesn’t fit, you have three options. The first is to get a new bowl, the second is to shave off a bit more off the inside of the pumpkin, and the third choice is to give up and cancel the party. The choice is yours! Then fill it with ice and your drinks, and you are good to go!
Speaking of pumpkins, did you know we have a (near) Chicago pumpkin patch at our pumpkin farm in Homer Glen? We bet you probably did, but here’s a reminder anyway. We have little pumpkins, pie pumpkins, odd pumpkins, and big pumpkins that are the exact kind you need for the fun little craft described above. Our orange pumpkins are just 39 cents per pound, pie pumpkins are $2.50 each and white pumpkins are 50 cents per pound, depending on availability. We also have a wide selection of any and all pumpkin carving supplies that you might need, so don’t forget about us as you are thinking about where to get your pumpkins this year!
Black Paper Rose Bouquet
This is a Halloween decoration idea that is fun, easy-to-do, and actually provides a level of class to any room. Make ten or fifteen of these flowers and you’ll have a lovely, mccabre bouquet. The first thing you need to do is to bend an 18” piece of floral wire in half. Then wrap double sided tape around the end that you’ve just bent four or five times.
Get some black streamer, and while it remains attached to its original roll, hold the tip of it against the taped wire. Wrap it around the inner wire another four or five times to create a sort of inner bud. Make sure you pinch the bottom portion of the streamer against the taped wire while you are spinning.
The last step is fairly simple as well. Keep on wrapping the streamer, but this time focus more paper on the base of the flower, so that petals naturally begin to fan out, until a full rose is formed. Cut the wire, and attach the flower to the wire with some tape. Then do it nine more times, and you are done! Super inexpensive and easy!
Pumpkin Spice Mason Jar Candles
People like to make fun of pumpkin spice-everything every time fall rolls around. It makes sense, to a certain degree, because we are certainly inundated with the flavor and scent pretty much everywhere we look or point our nose. But forgive us for adding to the noise, or the scent, we should say. We can’t help it, because pumpkin spice is actually quite pleasant. And being able to make a wonderfully smelling candle is a great activity to do by yourself for a little self-care.
Here’s the supplies you’ll need. A few big glass mason jars (or 4 small ones), 2 tablespoons of pumpkin spice, ½ cup of olive oil, a pack of bleached candle wick that is at least 1’ in length, 1 lb of candle wax, scissors, tape, and a kitchen pot.
The process takes 40 minutes of actual work time, which really isn’t that bad. Once you’ve got all of your supplies at hand, put your ½ cup of oil in a pot and bring it to the most delicate of simmers. Add your pumpkin spice, making sure the oil does not come to a boil. Mix well. Take your pumpkin spice-infused-oil, put it in a jar and leave it alone for 2 whole days.
Next, cut your wax into little tiny pieces and add them to a pot, heating them on low heat until all of the wax has melted. Then, cut your wick string to the appropriate length, depending on the height of your mason jar. Make sure you keep it secure with a piece of tape, because there will be no easy recovery of that wick once the oil has been poured.
Speaking of which, pour 2 tablespoons of oil into your mason jars, assuming you are going with the 4 smaller jars. Fill in the rest of each with the wax, and then stir the oil and wax together, while being sure you don’t pull the wick out. Put them in the refrigerator for an hour or so, and then they’ll be ready to go! Give yourself the rest of the day off, put on some tunes, read a great book, and enjoy the sweet scent of pumpkin spice in your own home! Oh, these will be a big hit at parties, too.
Visit Bengtson’s Pumpkin Farm Today!
If you are in need of additional Halloween party ideas, don’t fret, because there will be one more such post in just a few days, so watch this space! In the meantime, we hope you’ve enjoyed this mini-series enough to try out one or two of these ideas for Halloween decorations. Even if you aren’t having an out-and-out party, most of these will still work as decorations either inside or outside your home. And while you are enjoying the holiday, make sure you get your pumpkins and pumpkin farm fix from Bengtson’s Pumpkin Farm. We close on October 30th, so come see us soon!