Overdoing Hallowe’en and Still Having Fun


Hallowe’en is a big deal in Boise. And no where is it a bigger deal than along Harrison Boulevard, in the North End, a few blocks from WC’s house. Thousands of trick or treaters – WC isn’t exaggerating about this – throng the sidwalks of seriously over-decorated houses.

More than 100 Carved Pumpkins

More than 100 Carved Pumpkins

Some houses, a mix of those with really good treats and houses that were open to trick or treaters as haunted houses, had lines of more than 100 kids. Many entry walks were divided by plastic tape into entry and exit lines. The sidewalks were packed to the point of being impassable with parents and kids, almost all in costume. When WC visited the scene, at about 8:30 PM, about a third of the houses already had signs up saying they were out of candy. No surprise there.

Some of the decorations are sparer and more clever, although WC had never thought of dinosaurs as your typical Hallowe’en monster.

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Effective us of shadows in Hallowe’en decor

In the very low light, WC couldn’t photograph some of the yard displays that had moving parts. WC gives a special nod to the pirate themed yard display, which integrated the house and porch into the front of a pirate ship, complete with sails, costumed pirates and a skeleton at the ship’s wheel.

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Note the divided walkway for tick or treaters; clearly a house experienced in coping with hundreds of little costumed extortionists

An altogether surreal experience. And not just the numbers of people or the amazing yard decorations. In interior Alaska, where WC lived most of his life, Hallowe’en trick of treating was done in single digit or even sub-zero temperatures, and costumes were built around layers of down and wool clothing. While rain threatened most of the evening, the temperatures were in the mid-50s. Having it be dark and water be a liquid is still an unusual experience.1

Very impressive. Toto, we might not be in Fairbanks any more.


  1. No, WC didn’t trick or treat himself. But he did buy a dozen cinnamon sugar mini donuts from a street vendor, and introduced his brother-in-law to the delights of fresh, hot mini donuts. After all, WC is a lawyer and has to be a bad influence some of the time. 
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