One of our families favorite past times this time of year is to troll many of the pop-up Halloween stores that spring up peddling a menage of spooktacular products. Costumes, pitchforks, and every imaginable mask from the truly gruesome with gore galore to the cute unicorn festooned with fun fur.
They’re like Christmas tree lots only set up inside empty store fronts and adorned with roll up vinyl banners, sign twirlers, and wildly undulating air dancers. Lets face it, Halloween stores have to be one of the hardest ways to run a business with a selling window of just a few weeks.
Sure, there a few year round Halloween stores in the valley, but best goodies, only come out in the few weeks starting October first and around ’till October 31st.
Our favorite this year is the Spirit store in Northridge. Housed in an out building at the Northridge Mall, the store has just about everything a Halloween aficionado could possible want.
Zombies? Check. Zombie babies? Check. Zombie demon babies? Check. Purple furry pimp hat? Check. Cute pink princess gown? Check. You get the picture.
What my crew of teenage Halloween devotees likes most about this store is the number of animatronics displays on the floor. Seeing them brings the holiday into focus reminding them that the scary stuff of their childhood was (and is) really just the stuff of cheap fabric, plastic and flashing led lights. It’s a make-believe time of year that is OK to celebrate the things that go bump in the night and assuage the fear of the dark with a yummy treat from a neighbor.
That is what a trip to the Spirit Halloween store does for me and my kids. Just like the trip to the tree lot to pick a Christmas tree, the annual Halloween store pilgrimage has become a family tradition, and one of our favorite things to do in October.
If you haven’t made it out to any of the Halloween stores around the valley, you have one weekend left before they get boxed back up and stored till next year.