For once, I’m giving you the heads-up for Halloween, since it doesn’t occur until Sunday. But since this holiday takes place on a Sunday this year, we have an entire “Halloweekend” in which to celebrate! Yay!!!

Just PART of one of the dressed-up houses in LA!  Photo by Karen Salkin.

Just PART of one of the dressed-up houses in LA! Photo by Karen Salkin.

And, after the spookiest time we had last year, (by having to just stay at home,) I’m happy to report that there’s actually a lot to do again this go-round.

Some Halloweekend treats you can bake.

Some Halloweekend treats you can bake.

I’m sure that no matter where you live, there will be a plethora of private parties on Saturday night, not just in my Hollywood-centric hometown. And if you’re into Halloween but not partying, why not just drive around town and scope out the very creative, (and even some not so much,) decorated homes? For example, there’s a “Witch’s House” in Beverly Hills that’s the highlight of every Halloween. And Mr. X and I even came upon a fabulously-decorated abode in the Valley in LA last year, at the height of the pandemic!

Karen Salin's Halloween nails. Photo by Mr. X.

Karen Salin’s Halloween nails. Photo by Mr. X.

For you homebodies out there, there’s always spooky baking to be done with the kiddoes—just make everything black and orange, or with black licorice cats, pretzel broomsticks, and candy corn. And how about a pamper sesh, where you all adorn your fingernails with cool decorations, as well! (I’ve been getting raves on my talons for over a week now.)

If you prefer to go out, there are several amusement parks that do special presentations at this time of year, such as Knott’s Scary Farm, (as opposed to the usual Berry Farm, for those of you who don’t live out here,) hayrides, scary exhibits, and scary movies all over every town. Not to mention that trick-or-treating is back! This is the perfect time to be wearing any kind of mask! (Just don’t let kids stick their bare hands into a communal bowl, as the children in the pic at the top of this article are doing! Ew!!!)

I wish my party had looked like this one!

I wish my party had looked like this one!

My love of Halloween began early on in life. As a matter of fact, the only non-birthday party I ever threw in my life, (prior to my first Christmas tree trimming fete when I was in my mid-twenties,) was a Halloween soiree for my seventh grade gal pals from my new middle school. My parents even let us have a grown-up dinner (Halloween-themed, of course,) at the dining room table! And it was exclusive—only about a dozen girls, as opposed to my hitherto-fore elementary school birthday parties where I invited my entire class!!! (I didn’t want anyone to be left out.) This one was a sort-of low-key affair, because we wanted to show how grown-up we were in our new school, but we were all still happy to be wearing costumes, playing games, and giggling about boys. It’s actually the type of soiree that people of any age can throw, and I highly suggest doing so. Not all Halloween parties have to be extravaganzas like those of Heidi Klum.

Look at the date on this magazine cover, depicting a squad I'd love to be part of!

Look at the date on this magazine cover, depicting a squad I’d love to be part of!

Another idea for Halloweekend is to stay in and be safe, while watching scary movies. Of course, I have a story about doing that, as well. But first some background on it. I’ve rarely had a co-ed crew I’ve hung-out with on the regular, (until my clubbing days in the late ’90s.) I think that’s mainly because I’ve always had a boyfriend since I was fifteen! My first bf, when I was in high school, was in a college fraternity, so we always had people around. But we didn’t smoke weed, so we rarely partied with those guys or couples. My next two short relationships were devoid of posses, as well, and then my next serious guy had a major group of homies, but they all drank and I never did, so I didn’t have a good time with them, which meant I wasn’t really a part of it. And then came Mr. X, who, as we all know by now, is not a fan of socializing. I’ve adored and appreciated my life, but when I see groups of friends seemingly loving being together, I do miss that aspect a bit at times. Which leads me to this amusing (yet sort-of frightening) tale.

Karen Salkin at her friend's bat mitzvah, when Karen was in her late '40s!!!

Karen Salkin at her friend’s bat mitzvah, when Karen was in her late ’40s!!!

I was in New York for one Halloween when I was in my mid-forties, though everyone always thought I was about fifteen years younger. (No lie!) I was staying at my friend Jo’s house, and was very friendly with her young daughter, Sam, and Sam’s friends. I had been to Sam’s bat mitzvah earlier that year, (which means she and her friends were around thirteen-or fourteen-years-old,) and I heard later that one of her guy friends had a crush me on me, which was just adorbs! So this particular Halloween, Sam and her teen squad begged me to come to neighborhood haunted houses with them. Of course, they really needn’t have begged—I was thrilled to have something fun to do on that holiday, with people who were even more fun. Two of the girls even had a matching cowgirl costume for me. We had a blast. Until…

…they all decided to go back to the house of that crushing-on-me guy to watch scary movies because…his parents weren’t home! I, of course, declined the invite, but that boy came up and draped his arms around my shoulders, and told me to not worry that I’d be scared because…he’d be there to hold my hand!!! (Remember—he was fourteen at the time!)

An actually lovely haunted house.

An actually lovely haunted house.

That is the one and only time a group of pals asked me to watch scary movies with them on Halloween. But it was actually not a loss for me at all—I hate horror films, and that’s what they were going for that night. (But I did make the teen-agers walk me home—walking through Manhattan in a tiny cowgirl outfit alone would have been the real horror show!)

I hope that you all, (and I, as well,) have fun peeps to participate in any of these activities with this year. After all, we have three whole days to party now!

No matter who you spend Halloweekend, have a fabulous, and very safe one!!! Boo from me to you!



  1. I’ve got a show on Halloween! It’s at 4PM EDT (that’s 1PM for you West Coasters!)

    It’s Pay What You Can (Minimum 10 cents!) You will be TRICKED & TREATED to an assortment of our favorite SPOOKY tunes across a variety of genres. Join us for a WICKEDLY good time!

  2. Noelle Hannibal, who posted the link to her show, above, is a wonderful singer and performer! So I highly suggest you tune in on Halloween.

  3. What is your favorite Halloween movie? I like old schoolers like the original “Halloween” and “Black Christmas”. I know a lot of people love “The Shining” but I don’t really think of it as a horror film.

    • I hate ALL horror films! Always have. Thank goodness I haven’t seen many, but I was roped into Saw and The Shining over the years, and wish I could un-see them.

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