I thought I was all set for Halloween until I read a post from Arthur Johnson at G+. It's so hard to be conscientious with all of the stuff going on in the world! To read his original post that describes how the major chocolate companies allow slave child labor to supply us with our chocolate, click on his name above and scroll down to October 14th.
The challenge was now on. After spending 3 days writing software requirements, I needed the diversion anyway :P So, off to the stores I went. I typically have 100+ kids each year, and because I have a tendency to overdo, I hold myself to a $1 per kid allowance up to $100 maximum. The ideas below definitely do not need to be at that level, so anyone should be able to replace chocolate regardless of the budget they have by only using one or two of the ideas. More ideas can be found here and here. I'm sure even more can be found on the net, just search using 'no candy Halloween' or other similar key words.
For my neighborhood kiddies, I picked up party favors at Michaels and Goldfish snack packs and fruit treats at the local Target. Since I was done shopping at that point, I didn't hit the local Dollar store which I'm sure would have produced some fun and inexpensive finds, but would have likely run me over my budget.
The Goldfish came in a bag of 30 snack pouches and the Fruit Snacks came in a box of 80 for $4.49 each. My Target purchase came to $29.01. I will likely have snacks left over, but that's OK as this stuff I might actually eat myself.
The party favors were $2.99 each and came in packages of 12, 18, 20 or 36 depending on the item. A real good find were Glo bracelets that came in a package of 15 for $1. The cute spider web treat bags were $1.99 for a package of 25. The total price tag was $70.89.
Grand Total: $99.90. I came in under budget by 10 cents! LOL
Next year I'll be better prepared as the stores were pretty well picked over at this point on the party favor front. I'll have to now add Halloween to my "after holiday shopping" routine to pick up deals for next year. I can also sew treat pouches from cute Halloween fabric much cheaper than buying pre-made pouches. It's all in the planning, isn't it?