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Discussion Starter #1
Hey All,

This year is our 7th Halloween party and after most people spent more time on our back deck at last year's party than inside (where most of the decorations were), I'm going to focus on the yard.

Since I'll be outdoors I'm thinking of playing with dry ice, but wanted to hear what others have experienced with it: Is it worth using if you have to replenish it often (as I've read) to keep the effect up?

And for anyone who has done an outdoor focused party, things that worked really well?

Other current ideas: line the fence with plenty of stringed lights, maybe put up a screen and project some silent films to music. We have a pergola I'll dress up with dangling body parts and put drinks under that as a centerpiece.

Thanks!
 

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Typical Ghoul Next Door
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I've never used dry ice, because it seemed like I'd have to babysit it and there was an element of danger (the chance of freeze burning yourself). From what I read, it produces great fog for only a few minutes unless it's LARGE pieces, and it requires hot or at least warm water to get the best effect.

As far as outdoor party stuff, definitely good ideas about the lights and movie projector out there. We've done basic decorating most years, small area of the yard turned into a graveyard and lots of lights and other decorations. Just treated it like an extra room to decorate really.

We had seating areas with small tables or chairs available and for our last party, a themed games area setup. It was a creepy carnival, so I had a couple of games of chance in the "midway" area.

At other parties, we had a large coffin cooler on the back porch filled with ice and various beer/canned drinks. Have also done a firepit on cold nights and could see setting up a smores station or at least some marshmallow roasting if anyone was interested.
 

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I agree with not doing dry ice, this is where your fog machine with timer comes in handy (I got a Target brand plus generic timer off of Amazon- total cost 40 bucks), when you go outside to host/socialize then you can refill the machine up ( honestly unless you have set at a really high setting- you may would only need to refill it once if that). There are a few retailers on the internet that sell dry ice swizzle sticks, or you could have a central punch bowl that has it (if you reeeeeeallly want the effect), it is a cool effect, but I feel like most people are excited by decor or other costumes the other guests are wearing. Things that have worked for my outdoor Halloween parties include having plenty of seating, enough lighting (but not too much- this is where you can creative not only with placement but colors), music for ambiance, and a separate outdoor drink/food area - that way guests don't have to go back inside (at least for drinks).You can definitely dress up any cooler or outdoor area with a few dollar store decorations. Good luck!
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Thanks Frankie and acanton, you're re-iterating some of my thoughts on it, glad I'm not the only one who thinks it'd be cool in theory, but in practice...not so much.

Just looked at the forecast and it looks like it could go either way - be rained out and pointless to consider, or no rain and just cool enough outside that a fire pit would attract folks. I'll upload photos either way after Saturday :) Thanks!
 

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I'm not a fan of dry ice as it makes everything "moist". I made my first vortex fog chiller this year. It was extremely simple, cheap and quick to make. Now, two large bags of ice and I'm set for the whole night. I also splurged on a 4 inch vent fan to help suck the fog through and it works even better than before.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BXAW27H5QLo

And yes, I highly recommend Froggies fog juice. My first year using it and I am huge fan now.
 

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We've used dry ice for every party for a long time, and the effect is great. Just need to not handle it with bare skin...I break the package up into smaller chunks with a hammer, then place everything in a large open bowl in the freezer. If you need a dramatic quick effect, then you can use warmer or hot water. Check with your beer distributors, and never place it in drinks unless you're sure it's the safe type. Even then be careful. We've never used it in drinks, but it's the coolest effect in cauldrons, small water containers, and even small ponds we've had. Wear gloves for safety!
 

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I would also add that standing bar-height / pub tables are a great idea too! You can rent or buy for relatively cheap, and they don't take up a ton of space but give guests areas to congregate. We bought 3 Flash Furniture Hampton Pub Tables a few years ago, and they're easy to store and work great for the party.
Table.jpg
 
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