Have you ever heard of the Switch Witch?
The Switch Witch is one of my favorite Halloween activities for kids!
With many people expecting the traditional trick or treating to be cancelled this year due to the the global pandemic, this is a great time to start thinking about what you can do to help your kids have a fun and memorable Halloween no matter what!
In this post, I’ll share who the Switch Witch is and how you can introduce her to your kids.
There’s also three additional Halloween activities for the whole family:
- the Friendly Neighborhood Boo to share Halloween cheer with your friends
- an at-home Halloween party to host for your family
- online Halloween costume contests to enter for fun
Having a plan in advance is one of the best ways for our kids to realize that although Halloween 2020 might be different, it can still be a ton of fun.
Before we get into details, I’ve got a set of great Halloween printables for you! Enter your info below, so you can download and print them ASAP.
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The Switch Witch
So, who is the Switch Witch?
Basically, she’s the Halloween version of the Tooth Fairy.
After enjoying their candy on Halloween night, my kids leaves their candy bag out on the kitchen table for the Switch Witch.
Then the Switch Witch visits our house while they’re sleeping and switches their candy for a gift!
(So, here’s the real life version: my hubs and I put the candy in his truck to take to the office. Then we place a special wrapped gift for each of our kids in place of their candy bag.)
Because giving up their candy is a big sacrifice for them, we usually purchase a nicer gift in the $30 range. The amount of money you spend on a gift is up to you, of course!
But if you want the Switch Witch to become an annual visitor to your house, it helps to sweeten the deal with a thoughtful, worthwhile gift.
Benefits of the Switch Witch
There are so many great benefits of the Switch Witch!
Having less sugar in the house is one of the best reasons to begin this awesome tradition!
Some of the benefits of having less sugar in the pantry are:
- less tooth decay
- a likelihood to eat more nutrient-rich foods
- fewer sugar-induced behavior spikes
- less temptation for mom and dad to eat the candy on the sly (or for breakfast. ha!)
Our kids get incredibly excited for the Switch Witch to visit! They anticipate her visit (and her gift) for weeks in advance. And they love waking up on November 1st with something super exciting waiting for them. It’s almost like a mini-Christmas.
How to get started with the Switch Witch
To get your kids excited about the Switch Witch, you can download and print the Switch Witch sign up form I’ve prepped for you!
With everything that’s different this year, you could tell your kids that this is a new person, kind of like Santa or the Tooth Fairy, who is coming around to help kids have a happier Halloween.
Final notes on the Switch Witch
Because your kids may or may not be trick or treating this year, they may not have as much candy as they typically do. That’s okay. They can still leave what they have for the Switch Witch.
I should mention that we allow our kids to keep three extra pieces of candy to keep for later.
The Neighborhood Boo
Oh, how we love The Neighborhood Boo!
Basically, the Neighborhood Boo is a friendly ghost who makes his way around the neighborhood during the month of October. He leaves small surprise treats on the doorstep of different families.
Okay, real life version: as a family, we choose two families and leave a Halloween gift bag on their door step.
Included in the bag is a note encouraging them to pass on the fun and create a different gift bag for another two families in the neighborhood. Also, there’s a flyer for them to put in their window so others can see that they’ve already received a goodie bag.
(And yes, I’ve got the note and the window flyer included in the Halloween printable pack download!)
A few notes on the Neighborhood Boo
With current concerns about coronavirus and social distancing, there are a few things you might consider before beginning the Neighborhood Boo:
- include only store bought, non-food items in the gift bag, such as: Halloween books (this one is our all-time favorite!), socks, pencils, erasers, glow sticks, etc.
- in advance, text a parent in the home you’re thinking about delivering the gift bag to and make sure it’s okay
- have your kids include a few notes about how although Halloween will be different, it can still be really fun
It’s best to start the Neighborhood Boo at least two to three weeks before Halloween night. This way, it can have a chance to circulate around the neighborhood.
As the month progresses, encourage your kids to look for the flyers popping up in different windows. It will be great for them to see how their good deed has spread!
If you didn’t snag the printables at the top of the post, here they are again! (You can see the Neighborhood Boo pages on the left and the Switch Witch sign up form on the right.)
At home Halloween party
If you are thinking it would be best to spend Halloween at home this year, you can have a great family Halloween party!
Depending on where you live and restrictions for coronavirus, inviting one or two other families would give your kids a chance to socialize with friends too.
Here are some great ideas to make your family Halloween party extra special:
- Put up a few decorations, such as this black lace spiderweb for your mantle, some inexpensive pumpkin paper banners, or these rubbery black bats
- Have a pumpkin carving contest. This pumpkin carving kit is awesome! It comes with cookie-cutter like shapes for eyes, noses and mouths. All you need is a rubber mallet to pound them into the side of the pumpkin. No knives needed!
- Download a fun Halloween play list and set the mood with some creepy music
- Have your kids dress up in costume and take photos for an online Halloween costume contest
- Play these awesome low-prep Halloween minute to win it games
- Decorate Halloween sugar cookies
- Watch a favorite Halloween movie
- Tell “scary” stories with a flashlight or around a firepit
And of course, leave your candy for the Switch Witch at the very end of the night!
Online Halloween costume contests
Finding and entering a few online Halloween costume contests can be a great way to get your kids excited about wearing a costume this year.
While wearing a costume and staying home may feel like a waste of money, entering these online costume contests can make it feel more worthwhile!
So far, there is only one online Halloween costume contest site that has published any information. I’ll be sure to update as more become available!
Focusing on G-rated costumes, this is a great costume contest for families to enter.
Costume Works offers $25, $50, and $100 prizes for each of six different categories:
- best family costume
- cutest baby costume
- best kid’s costume
- best couple costume
- coolest adult costume
- best group costume
You can send up to ten original photos of your costumes right here. They need to be in PNG, JPEG or GIF image format.
The last date to submit entries is November 20, so you have plenty of time after Halloween to get your photos in. Prize money will be sent via Paypal.
Sadly the popular online costume retailer has cancelled their 2020 costume contest. Boo!
All the more reason to pin this post for later! Be sure to come back and see what other online Halloween costume contests are happening!
Final thoughts on the Switch Witch and other great Halloween activities for kids:
If your kids are like mine, they probably LOVE Halloween!
I really don’t want my kids to be disappointed that Halloween is cancelled this year. Instead it’s my goal to have lots of fun Halloween activities for them to choose from.
Things like introducing the Switch Witch, beginning the Neighborhood Boo, or planning a family Halloween party can help your kids feel excited about Halloween this year.