If you're concerned about your kids sweating away under layers of Halloween costumes, make smarter costumes. Assemble or sew your costumes from real fabrics rather than the cheap non-breathable polyester of store-bought costumes; avoid uncomfortable wigs, hats, masks and props that you'll end up carrying by the end of the night; use face paint to create a memorable look instead of relying on layers of clothes; wear a costume that incorporates a bag or backpack so it does double duty; and consider costume themes that are appropriate for warm weather like safari guides or surfers... You don't have to be a seamstress (although if you are, that's great) -- you can assemble your own costumes from thrift stores, or sales and clearance items. We've been attending MNSSHP in themed, homemade costumes for 10 years. Among our costumes: pirates, sorcerers, ancient Romans, the casts of Scooby-Doo and the Wizard of Oz (OK, I'll admit, our Cowardly Lion costume was very, very warm). This past year, we used old formal clothes and lots of face paint to look like the Mexican Dia de los Muertos. Every year we've learned more about how to make costumes that are both comfortable and distinctive. What makes the MNSSHP so special is seeing all the guests in costumes, with their creativity unleashed. - Jeremy Jacobs
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