It’s officially fall and Halloween is right around the corner! Most people think Halloween is just a day for little kids, but anyone can get in on the holiday spirit, from children to seniors and everyone in between. Draw the family closer together and help grandparents bond with their grandchildren with these fun Halloween activities for seniors to enjoy with their families.
- Halloween Movies
Watching spooky movies is a favorite Halloween activity for people of all ages. Children can share their favorite Halloween movies with seniors, and older adults can share some of the classics with the younger generations. If some watchers scare easily, skip the scary movies and enjoy the milder Halloween-themed films. Here are some Halloween favorites to enjoy this season:
- It’s the Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown
- The Addams Family
- Little Shop of Horrors
- House on Haunted Hill
- Psycho, The Birds, Rear Window, Rebecca, or anything else by Alfred Hitchcock
- Scary Stories
A great Halloween activity this time of year is sharing scary stories. Get a hard copy or audiobook to read or listen to together. A grandparent can read a story to the grandkids, or have the grandkids read to a grandparent. You can also all take turns coming up with your own scary stories to share with one another. This could easily become your family’s newest favorite Halloween tradition. Here are some suggestions of stories to read together.
Stories for Adults and Older Children:
- “The Black Cat” by Edgar Allen Poe
- The Wendigo by Algernon Blackwood
- “The Legend of Sleepy Hollow” by Washington Irving
- Frankenstein by Mary Shelley
- Dracula by Bram Stoker
Stories for Young Children:
- What Was I Scared Of? by Dr. Seuss
- Monster Academy by Heidi E. Y. Stemple and Jane Yolen
- Bonapart Falls Apart by Margery Cuyler
- My Monster Mama Loves Me So by Laura Leuck
- Pumpkin Painting and Carving
One of the most popular Halloween activities for seniors and their families is painting and carving pumpkins. This timeless tradition lets everyone involved show their unique creativity. Those who are able to handle cutting tools can carve jack-o-lanterns with scary or funny faces. Everyone else will love decorating pumpkins with paint or markers. Each generation will have a great time showing off their creations to one another. Best of all, everyone will now have new fall decorations to make home feel more festive and to remember fun times with the whole family.
- Halloween Crafts
Besides pumpkin decorating, there are a number of other Halloween crafts that seniors and children will love doing together. These festive crafts are simple and inexpensive, but fun for all who participate, no matter their age. Once these crafts are finished, they will make great decorations to keep you in the spooky spirit through the rest of the season.
- Spooky candles – Take a flameless candle and glue black lace around the outside for an elegant Halloween decoration that will cast spooky shadows around the room.
- Cheesecloth ghosts – All you need is cheesecloth, wire, liquid starch or Elmer’s glue, a mixing bowl, and common household items to shape your ghosts on, such as bottles, ornaments, vases, etc.
- Mummy votives – Place a flameless votive in a gauze-wrapped Mason jar and glue a couple googly eyes on the outside, and you have an adorable light-up mummy to add to your Halloween decorations.
- Glow-in-the-dark eyes – For a spooky Halloween decoration that will scare those who pass by, cut eye shapes into toilet paper rolls, tape a glow stick into each roll, and place the rolls in the bushes or windows. When it gets dark, all people will see are glowing eyes staring out from the darkness.
- Festive Treats
No family gathering is complete without food. This Halloween, include everyone in the food preparation and put together themed treats that will put everyone in the spirit. These treats are equally festive and delicious, and both creating them and eating them are fun Halloween activities for seniors to enjoy with their families.
- Witch finger pretzel rods – This sweet and salty treat is perfect for a Halloween gathering. Coat a large pretzel rod with green candy coating and top it off with a black-dyed almond, and you have spooky witch fingers to feast on.
- Mummy dogs – This is a simple Halloween twist on the classic pigs in a blanket. Wrap hot dogs in strips of biscuit dough, bake until brown, and finish with dots of mustard for the eyes.
- Pumpkin pie dip – Nothing says fall and Halloween quite like pumpkin-flavored anything. This pumpkin pie dip is made with just heavy cream, instant vanilla pudding mix, canned pumpkin, and pumpkin pie spice.
- Pumpkin patch dirt cups – This Halloween treat is simple to make and fun to eat. Layer chocolate pudding with crushed Oreos then top with candy pumpkins and green sour straws to create a mini edible pumpkin patch.
Senior Care at Jefferson Park at Dandridge
These are just a few fun Halloween activities for seniors to join in on the holiday fun. If your aging loved one lives alone, make sure you reach out and invite them to enjoy the season’s fun with you and your family. Whether that means stopping by their house for a visit or inviting them over to yours, include them in the festivities however you can. If your loved one needs to keep their distance this Halloween, they can still join in on the fun via video chats. Stories can be read over video, and they can do crafts at the same time as your family during a video call so that everyone is virtually doing them together.
If your aging loved one is a resident here at Jefferson Park at Dandridge, we unfortunately are not able to accept visitors at this time due to the current health situation*. However, our activities team is working hard to schedule video calls between residents and their loved ones so that you can still interact with one another despite the distance. We are also not currently able to host group activities and parties like we normally would this time of year, but instead our activities team is going to each resident’s room so they can still have festive fun with individual activities.
Has your aging loved one been living alone or in your home under your care but is now starting to get to a point where they need more senior care than you can provide on your own? If so, Jefferson Park at Dandridge is here to help. Our skilled nursing facility provides long-term and respite senior care in a loving, home-like environment. We love all of our residents and treat them like our own family. To learn more about who we are and the services we offer, reach out to us at 865-397-3163 or online.
*Per CDC Guidelines