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Trunk or Treat Ideas

Trunk or Treat

Many people are familiar with trick-or-treating, but trunk-or-treat is growing in popularity every year.

What exactly is trunk or treat?
It’s an event that is most often held in a school or church parking lot, where participants
park and decorate the trunks of their cars. Trunk-or-Treaters go from car to car (instead of house to house) for their treats. Trunk or Treating has grown in popularity because it's considered a safer, more controlled activity than traditional door to door trick-or-treating. Everyone is dressed up, cars included, so Halloween spirits are high!

Of course PartyCheap has all the decorations you need for the ultimate trunk decoration, and our scene setters and backgrounds are perfect for creating just the right Halloween ambience.

10 tips for planning your Trunk-or-Treat

  1. The more the merrier - look for help in planning, running and cleaning up after your Trunk or Treat.
  2. Location, location, location - Where you hold your event is important. You'll need room for the participants to park as well as parking for Trunk or Treaters. Put someone in charge of parking to make sure you don't waste space and that the kids have an easy, clear path to follow from car to car. Be sure to block any traffic from driving through the trunk or treat area. Choose a location separated from the road or street by space, fences, or barriers. Make sure there are no impediments to little ghosts and ghouls like pot holes, large stones, low tree-limbs, ruts or uncovered drainage or sewer inlets.
  3. Fun or frightening - make sure your participants have the right type of theme for your target age-group. Think about the age group you're most likely to get for your neighborhood or organization. Young trunk or treaters may be to frightened to approach if a theme is to adult for them. On the other hand, older audiences might be bored with too cute a decorative theme. If you plan to have a theme, be sure all participants are aware of it at the start.
  4. Hope for the best, plan for the worst - be sure to have a back-up plan for inclement weather. Options range from moving indoors to providing canopies to cover each car and a walking path between them, rescheduling, or cancelling the event.
  5. Picture perfect - depending on the size of your trunk or treat event, you may want to have a designated photographer to take pictures. Remember to get pictures of the entire event from set-up through tear-down. An assistant to walk along and take notes to write captions later helps to eliminate vagaries of memory and makes any website or social media posts much more interesting.
  6. Hear ye, hear ye - be sure to promote your event. Options include social media, hung flyers in storefronts and on telephone poles, to announcements made during school or church services. Don't forget to recruit for helpers in all of your promotional materials.
  7. More power to you - will you need electricity for lighting decorations, heating food or drinks, or providing general lighting? If the answer is yes make sure to use heavy duty, outdoor rated extension cords with grounding plugs still attached. Tape down or cover the cords any place they might create a walking hazard. Prevent cars from driving over the cords during set up, and keep them out of any driving lanes participants might use when bringing thier trunk or treaters. If using a generator for power place it as far from the event space as possible to control noise and exhaust as much as possible, and to keep curious little hands from being burned on hot mufflers.
  8. Sounds like fun - will you be providing any type of sound track for the event? Whether it's creepy sound affects, classic Halloween themes or the local radio station - you'll need power to play it and something to play it on.
  9. And first prize goes to - do you plan to have a best decorated trunk or other contest as part of the trunk or treat? Decide how many prizes and what, if any, awards winners will receive. Be sure you have enough awards/prizes for the event.
  10. Everything but the kitchen sink - make sure you have spare flashlights, tape (both light and heavy duty), magnets, paper clips, safety pins, zip ties, string, extension cords, outlet multipliers, trash bags, and anything else you might need. Remind those decorating their trunks to bring lawn chairs. Be sure to have a well stocked 1st Aid kit on hand.