Happy haunting…

“The Phantom” has been haunting our neighbourhood for over ten years now.  What started from an article I read in a Mary Engelbreit “Home Companion” magazine when my oldest was just a little girl…has turned into a tradition that the neighbourhood children look forward to each year.

It started off fairly slow but has reached a point that in the last few years, “The Phantom” can be found on a few hundred homes in our area and has spread to various other neighbourhoods as well.  Here’s what you do…

Print off the following poem which gives the instructions to the person you are about to haunt!

The Phantom haunts you happily from now through Halloween
And was delivered by a friend who hopefully was not seen!

The spirit of the neighbourhood has come to wish you well
Someone, somewhere, selected you to receive this happy spell!

You must display the Phantom on your door so all can spy
That you’re already haunted by this happy little guy!

Then fix three sacks with goodies like the one given to you
Ring some one’s bell and leave the spell and make them happy too!

The next step is to put your goodie bags together! Fill three bags with Halloween-type goodies such as candles, napkins, pencils, socks, make-up, glow sticks, craft kits, candy, cookie cutters, etc… (the Dollar Stores are perfect for such ghoulish treats!) You can use gift bags, Halloween bags, brown paper bags, pumpkin heads or anything your imagination can come up with. The packages average between five and ten dollars each… depending on how elaborate you choose to make them!  (One year I even received a bottle of “Vampire” wine!!)

Take a piece of bristol board or construction paper and create your cut-out “Phantom” to place on the front door.  The ghosts in our neighbourhood are about the size of a regular piece of construction paper (usually white but I’ve seen orange, bright yellow and lime green).  Draw an upside down “U” and then draw a squiggle on the bottom to connect the ends.  Using a black marker, add two big eyes and a squiggle for a mouth!  Cut the Phantom out and place it in the bag along with the poem and treats.

Pick a neighbour, wait until dark, place the bag on the step, ring the door bell and RUN!!!!  (Then do it two more times!!!)

The kids are killing themselves laughing, nearly wetting their pants, freaked out, scared… and having an absolute ball. It’s definitely my favorite part (and often I do more than three bags just to watch my children have so much fun!!)

Within days, you’ll see the cut-out “Phantom’s” multiplying on neighbours’ front doors and the children are desperately waiting to get “Phantomed” themselves!  Start early (this weekend) to ensure all of the children get a turn.  Spread it out to a few different houses on different streets.  Phantom folks you’ve never met.  Phantom folks without kids as well and don’t forget the family pets!

Happy Haunting!!!

4 Replies to “Happy haunting…”

  1. We love this…. We had been doing it in our old neighborhood, but I think we may start it in the new one…. Happy Haunting!!!