Local Treasures with Pia: Halloween decorations

Spokane, Washington – No matter how you feel about the holiday, Halloween is difficult to avoid or ignore. Orange pumpkins and white ghosts populate front steps and front yards, and then there’s the candy and the uber cute little trick-or-treaters.

On a sunny afternoon, I drove around town from Browne’s Addition to the central Spokane Valley scouting for decorated yards, and though it was very early October lots of decorations were up.

On the corner of Elm Street and Pacific Avenue in Browne’s Addition sits a newly restored Victorian that has been dressed up with two-story tall skeletons, as well as a golden snake (try and top that!) along Elm Street and a white ghost flowing freely from the chimney.

In Spokane Valley, on Valleyway between Pines and McDonald Roads you will find dueling Halloween decorations: on the southside a yard sits full of inflatable ghouls, ghosts and goblins. A bit farther east, on the northside of the street, another yard has been transformed to a cemetery complete with a ghost hearse pulled by a skeleton horse. Spooky!

If you commute on South Ray Street between I-90 and 29th Avenue, you’ve no doubt noticed the very well decorated yard on the corner of Ray and 24th Avenue. That one is best after dark, when the inflatables are up and running and lights illuminate it all.

Now, it’s not too late even if you have not put up a single decoration yet.

Learn from the pros: the closer you are to Halloween, the better your natural decorations like carved pumpkins, strawbales and mums will look – if you put that stuff up too early it’s going to wilt.

Inflatable figures are easy to plug in and very popular, though they look sort of flat during the day unless you keep the little air pump running 24-7. Inflatables come in all holiday themes from Halloween, over Christmas to Valentine’s Day and if you are a little handy you may be able to use the same air pump for more than one season.

A word on power: if your display needs a lot of power, make sure you try running it before the big night, so you avoid blown fuses. Check that all extension cords are rated for outdoor use, and that any air blowers (fan pumps) and smoke machines are also rated for outdoor use.

Once Halloween is over, take a hint from the pros: take your stuff down and box it up – cords and strings and pumps and all – mark each box and tote, and it will be so much easier to put things up next year.

Photo credit: @piahallenberg on Instagram

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