Halloween creeps closer every day and now that it's October, it's time to haul out the creepy decor and start planning parties, candy and costumes.
There's good news for local retailers: Americans are poised to spend more money on Halloween this year than in the past decade, a survey by National Retail Foundation shows. Sales of costumes, decor and other Halloween merchandise are expected to hit $8 billion, the foundation says, with 70 percent of Americans planning to celebrate the holiday. At that rate, the average person will spend around $80 total on costumes, decorations and candy.
So what characters will darken your doorway looking for treats and doling out tricks?
You'll see the traditional witches, goblins, ghouls and Goths, many of which will be zombified.
Party-bound couples will dress in themes: Barack and Michelle, ketchup and mustard, King Arthur and Guinevere, The Flintstones, Alice and the Mad Hatter, Olive Oyl and Popeye.
Toddlers will go as princesses and characters from their favorite books, movies and cartoons: “Yo Gabba Gabba,” “The Cat in the Hat,” Dora, Buzz Lightyear, “Jake and the Never Land Pirates;” or even old-school favorites such as “Power Rangers,” and “Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles.”
But if there's one huge trend for costumes this year, it's sci-fi and superheroes.
“I guess because Hollywood has pursued the superheroes so much lately, the costumes follow suit,” said Matt Dillon, co-owner of Party Galaxy, a locally owned party supply store that's been in business since the 1930s.
Favorite superhero costumes include “The Avengers” characters: Iron Man, Captain America, The Hulk and Thor. Spider-Man and Batman are also hot.
Women also are getting in on the superhero costume trend, dressing as Black Widow from “The Avengers” and Catwoman from “Dark Knight Rises,” as well as the classic female superhero: “Wonder Woman.” Batwoman, Supergirl and Batgirl also are sure to be popular this year.
You're likely to see some Katniss Everdeens from “The Hunger Games,” and, especially among the teen girl set, an eye-full of Lady Gagas, Nicki Minajes and Ke$has.
Also popular among women are fantasy and storybook characters such as Alice and The Queen of Hearts from “Alice in Wonderland,” Snow White from “Snow White and the Huntsman,” and Dorothy from “The Wizard of Oz.”