According to the National Retail Federation, Americans this year are slated to spend approximately 8.8 billion dollars on the Halloween holiday. That’s a lot of candy, costumes and decorations. The sweet stuff alone accounts for 2.6 billion in spending. Costumes, over 3.2 billion. And we can’t forget our furry friends, over 29 million people plan to dress up their pets. Just like any holiday, big splurges in spending also result in a lot of waste. So where can you lessen your impact and green up your Halloween holiday?
Ditch the Disposable Decor and Go Resuable and Natural
It is tempting if you are a major fan of Halloween to purchase one time use plastic decor that may not survive until the next season. Instead, opt for items that can stored and used year over year. If you are hosting a party, think Halloween themed linen or cloth tablecloths, glassware, and decorative plates. You can also use gourds, pumpkins and corn for making a fun, spiffy table. These are all compostable after the fact.
Avoid the Store Bought Costumes and Make your Own
The best part of Halloween is being creative and letting your mind take flight. Head to your local thrift shop and see what cool and fun character you can become. It will save you lots of money and you can always donate your goods back to the thrift store afterwards to avoid excess clutter. If you have a mom that loves to be creative, a truly homemade costume is lots of fun. This is me in 1978 as Wonder Woman. It’s my favorite costume as a kid.
Your Pumpkin can be More than Decor
After carving your pumpkin and removing the seeds, roast them up for a healthy treat. You can also use the guts of the pumpkin for recipes like pumpkin gut bread, vegetable stock or even a pumpkin risotto. See a full list of recipes here.
Collect your Sweet Treats in Resuable Bags
Leave the plastic pumpkins and bags in the store. Opt for a cloth bag that is a sturdy and washable.
Light up your Path
We’ve come a long way with lighting these days. There are lots of options to choose from when lighting the sidewalk, the front porch or the interior of your home. Solar and LED lights are efficient and inexpensive ways to keep your energy consumption low. You can also have fun by using soy or beeswax candles to create the ambiance inside the home. They are petroleum free and don’t produce soot.
Have a fun and safe Halloween and remember that if you start out doing small little things, they add up to major positive changes for Mother Earth. Say yes to a Green Halloween.