Sponsored by M&M’S®

Halloween is the perfect time to host. Why?

You can go over the top, be playful or keep it simple with décor — it’s all a win.

When it comes to hosting for the season, creating a memorable moment has everything to do with the details. The season’s theme allows you to create a dynamic vibe with everything from coffins and fake vampire teeth to more indirect nods, think cobwebs and elaborate candle displays. The most important part of hosting is the attention to the guest experience. The goal is to create a series of moments and interactions that celebrate the season, make guests feel special and, perhaps most important, are fun.

Here are five tips from EBONY and M&M’S® to make sure your Halloween festivities are a total scream — and the good kind.

Start with the Invite. Whether you’re sending paper invitations, an email, or a text, take the time to make it special. That includes the simple details like formatting the message in a formal way, ensuring that it has all the details (like time, location, and dress/attire guidelines), and a contact number. Next, you want to up ante with a thoroughly conceived and well-executed design. For traditional invitations this can be executed with everything from the paper color to selected imagery. If your guests are receiving their invite via email, take the time to pick an impactful template that complements the event theme. Even texts can have flavor — the small details count. Put your emojis to work and let your guests know your party will be memorable.

Set the Mood. Be intentional with everything you select for your event. If your gathering is meant to be lighthearted and fun, your décor, entertainment, food choices and music selection should complement the vibe you’re creating. Finger foods and grab-and-go Halloween-themed snacks and candy (think Halloween-edition spooky M&M’S®) are ideal for Halloween events, since some guests may wear costumes that impede movement. Find great Halloween-themed treats here.

Food. Food. Food. Halloween is the perfect time to try fun, themed recipes. Creating specialty beverages, horror-themed finger foods and tasty treats, like these M&M’S® Monster cups, are a must. Find more great recipes here.

Create a Vibe with Music. Every good party needs a DJ, or a killer playlist. Both options require the one thing: you must go over the songs that you want to play. Start the party with fun music, and transition to more popular, trendy, and themed music as the night goes on. Don’t forget to use mid-tempo and slower songs to wind the party down.

Bring the Entertainment. Whether it’s games, hired entertainment or competitions, few things get a crowd more hyped than collective moments. Deciding what type of entertainment you want is simple. Games are best for smaller, more intimate gatherings where guests have some level of connection. Competitions are great for mid to large size gatherings, especially if the host has made participation part of the invite (think best costume or best make-up). Last, entertainment (think musicians, specialty chefs or talent) are ideal for most events and should be selected based on the guest list.