Photo by Maggie Gautrau, Photo Editor.
Sarah O'Malley

Sarah O’Malley is a fourth-year Journalism student from Boston, MA who has since moved to Orono, ME to study at the University of Maine. She is a staff writer for the Culture section and enjoys attending events, meeting new people, and learning more about UMaine and its students. In her free time she enjoys hiking, cooking, watching documentaries, and playing with dogs.

Halloween is one of the most event-filled and celebrated holidays on modern college campuses, and it’s easy to see why. A celebration of dressing up, eating candy, watching scary movies and drinking festive drinks is enough to get excited about, but when you throw into the mix the college dynamic of partying, you can certainly make a night out of it. And although Halloween lands on a Tuesday this year, there are still ways of enjoying the night. Just consider some of the following advice before heading out.

Have fun. This may seem obvious, but prioritize your expectations and ambitions for the night and do whatever will make you happy. Halloween is one of the best holidays there is if you do it right, and only you know what that looks like for you. If you want to stay at home and eat Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups while binge watching the new season of “Stranger Things” from the comfort of your own bed, do it. If you want to get all dolled up and paint the town red, hopping from party to party and living your best life, do it. Don’t let anyone else tell you what fun looks like, make your own fun.

But if you do plan on going out drinking, keep a few things in mind. Eat a substantial meal beforehand. This will help you avoid scenarios like when midnight strikes and you’re in some bar bathroom puking up all those well drinks. Drink lots of water. Despite popular belief, drinking water is not cheating. Alternating drinks with glasses of water makes you smart and responsible, not weak or someone who “can’t hang.”

Dress for the weather. This Tuesday’s forecast is predicted to be in the high 50’s, but bringing a jacket doesn’t ruin your costume and wearing tights doesn’t make you any less sexy. And when it comes to picking a costume, everyone wants something that’s clever and memorable, but also attractive and alluring. Finding this balance can be hard, but go by the rule of thumb: don’t wear anything you wouldn’t want to be photographed in. The internet is forever, after all.

Stick together. The buddy system works wonders in college, and it’s always better to have a friend along for the ride. If you go to a party with people, make sure you leave with all those people. No one should get left behind on All Hallows Eve.

Arrange a ride home before you go out. If you are walking, more power to you (again, buddy system), but if you’re getting a ride to a party make sure you’ve figured out how you’re getting home before you start slamming Smirnoff Ices. Uber and Tip Whip are also an option, but plan for these things to happen. And this goes without saying, but never drive drunk. It’s dangerous, it’s irresponsible and it’s not worth it. Don’t get in a car with someone who’s been drinking, and don’t be afraid to call your friends or peers out on it either. Everyone knows it’s wrong, so don’t use Halloween as an excuse. You will get caught.

Part of Halloween tradition is getting your mind blown by classic horror films, and this year you can utilize Netflix or Hulu for their horror and thriller movie options. Most students have these platforms (or know someone who does), and both have specific sections for the month of Halloween. Check it out for yourself.

And finally, perhaps the best kernel of advice is to wait until the day after Halloween to stock up on discounted candy. Walmart, Hannaford and most Alltown Markets are great options for making the most out of the holiday, and most students don’t need to buy candy for trick-or-treaters on the day of Halloween, so just wait it out and then get double your money’s worth on discounted candy. It’s the way to go.

Halloween can be a wonderful, memorable and exciting holiday to celebrate during college, as long as you’re staying safe. So keep this advice in mind while you prepare your plans.