Fancy some Halloween fun? This time of year has become one of the biggest as far as outdoor events are concerned.
Once a fairly minor celebration in the UK, in recent years we’ve almost outstripped the USA in our enthusiasm for Halloween, AKA All Hallows Eve. There’s a powerful Day of the Dead trend emerging, fresh from Mexico, with more and more of us dressing up as zombies, ghosts and corpses on 1st November, taking to the streets for parades and gatherings. Then there’s good old Bonfire Night on November 5th, another great excuse for cold weather alfresco entertainment.
Seasonal celebrations around the nation
Big Halloween celebrations this year include the extraordinary Stranger Things event in Birmingham, inspired by the smash hit Netflix series and being held at the Night Owl in Birmingham. The Mansion Halloween Ball, in London, is another, but the venue is being kept secret until 48 hours beforehand. All potential revellers know so far is that there’ll be three dance floors, live performers, a prize for the best costume and a ‘real’ graveyard.
Brighton in Sussex hosts its 5th annual celebration of the Mexican festival, Day of the Dead, with a host of city-wide events including zombie-inspired street parades, the FrightFest party at the racecourse, a ‘fully-immersive’ phantom experience in a local stately home, vampire tea parties, live cabaret, Fear on the Pier and more. But Brighton isn’t alone. Day of the Dead events are kicking off all over the nation.
Bonfire Night has always been a big one, a great excuse for people of every age to throw a party, and this year is no exception. Every town, city and village in the nation seems to be busy building enormous bonfires, and fireworks come top of the menu. At the same time people all over Britain are planning their own parties at home. Some are celebrating all three events, making this time of year even bigger than Christmas.
What makes Halloween, Day of the Dead and Guy Fawkes’ Night special?
So what is the one thing that makes all of these celebrations extra-special? It’s fire, something humans and our ancestors have been fascinated by for millions of years. There are all sorts of creative ways to harness our love of fire for brilliant parties and unforgettable events. In our experience chimineas and fire pits are two of the best, the perfect way to lend some thrilling authenticity to a kids’ or grown ups’ Halloween event, Day of the Dead celebration or Bonfire party.
The magic of chimineas and fire pits
Today’s kids don’t often get the chance to play with fire. It’s dangerous stuff, after all. But when you light up a fire in a chiminea or fire pit it’s contained, so a lot safer. You can stay lovely and warm without sparks and embers spitting out in every direction. You can cook tasty food in no time, and we all know there’s nothing quite as good as the flavour of good food cooked outdoors.
Being outdoors in the dark is always a thrill. The flickering flames play on people’s faces, adding mystery. A hearty fire adds drama and excitement to even the simplest party, lighting up anything from a small garden gathering for friends and family to a full-on mega-party where you invite the entire street along for the ride.
3 simple Halloween, Guy Fawkes and Day of the Dead recipes
You get the picture. This is the perfect time of year to get your chiminea or fire pit out and party. Here are three super-simple recipes to help your celebration go with a bang.
- Toasted marshmallows and roasted apples – If you have a sweet tooth, there’s nothing quite like toasted marshmallows, with that unique charcoal underbelly! All you do is grab a marshmallow tool, specially designed for safe toasting in chims and fire pits, stick your marshmallows on the spikes and hold them above the fire until they start to bubble. If you prefer your snacks healthier, get some small apples and roast them on skewers or marshmallow forks. Roasted apple tastes amazing. Or combine the two for a fabulously tasty treat. You can also melt cubes of jelly or squares of chocolate – the fun’s in the melting, and they taste awesome
- Pumpkin soup – In America they eat pumpkin pie all the time. Over here we tend to carve our pumpkins and throw the good stuff inside away. Not any more. Buy one of our excellent cast iron cookpots, which come in two sizes. Grill slices of pumpkin with peppers, onions and garlic for 10-12 minutes until slightly brown. Add some olive oil, cream and vegetable stock, then simmer it on your chim or fire pit for 40 minutes. Epic!
- Juicy meatballs – Take 500g of mince. Add your choice of seasoning and two teaspoons of olive oil. Roll it into balls, then skewer them for cooking. Make a selection of larger and smaller balls, use the large ball as a spider body and the small ball as the head. Add Twiglet legs and voila, spiders. Great fun for the kids, who can join in by assembling the arachnids themselves.
Order your chiminea or fire pit by Thursday 27th for Halloween
Whatever you’re doing at the end of the month, whatever you’re celebrating, this time of year is when chimineas and fire pits really come into their own. If you’re thinking about buying one, now’s the perfect time. Order by Thursday 27th October and we’ll send it to you in good time for the festivities.