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Ask A Boston Expert: Trendy Halloween Costumes

Peter Buckley
Cape Cod Maple Park Campground
290 Glen Charlie Road
East Wareham, MA 02538
(508) 295-4945

Nestled in the heart of a southern suburb of Boston, Halloween spook expert Peter Buckley has made himself and his home a ghastly ghoulish legend in Stoughton. From the youngest to the seasoned veteran of ghosts, witches and goblins, the go-to man for Halloween advice lives on the south shore. Delighting children with a simple scare in the foyer one dark Halloween night turned this average family man into a demented madman that plots and schemes 'til October ends. His collection of animatronics, smoke machines and mannequins grow in number each year. Armed with hatchets in tents on the grounds, climbing the garage wall upside down, and attending a funeral in the Buckley 'haunted mansion," the cast dares those who visit to try their luck and escape alive.

Walking Dead
(Photo by Neilson Barnard/Getty Images)

TV Show Spin-Off 'The Walking Dead'

Zombies may be dead but they never grow old. The concept of out grown suits battered and bloody lives on even well into the sixth season of 'The Walking Dead." "Zombie costumes are a quick dive into the closet. The dirtier the better, and the make up can be a few dark smudges underlining your bones and surrounded by white foundation," Buckley says, making it sound easy. And it is! Most of the best costumes are found around the house — add a little imagination and you're ready for a night of tricks and treats.

"The best way to create home made zombie make up is with toilet paper and Elmer's glue. It's the same as liquid latex. A layer of glue first helps to form scars, create mounds and gapping open wounds. Once dry, add whatever is handy for blood. To give the costume some authentic zombie grunge, take an old wine cork, burn it and smear over the cloth for tell-tale dirt marks." Peter added "If you're aiming for slight gore try adding a zipper, you may need spirit gum due to the extra weight most make up kits have a small vial included."

TV Show Spin-Off 'American Horror Story'

'When I think of pop culture I think 'American Horror Story'." Buckley confided. TV series like "The Walking Dead" and "American Horror Story" have mesmerized the young and old the same way werewolves and Dracula did back in the era of Vincent Price, the actor with the spine tingling voice and distinctive horror film flair. Winning the Golden Globe and adding an Emmy for it's ability to leave the audience in stunned disbelief, American Horror Story is so gruesome it's horrifically entertaining. In it's fifth season you have plenty of costumes and details to chose from, and don't forget the props! Let's leave that scary thought for Halloween.

(Photo by Ian Forsyth/Getty Images)

Gothic For Girls

"Girls are brave and have a tendency to love the Gothic look." Buckely said. "I've spent years mentoring children in the neighborhood giving them a safe creative outlet during this season. But while watching the door of a guided tour, the girls will go in first unafraid. Surprisingly enough, the boys will linger and or only make it through half way, running back in the opposite direction!" Kudos to the goth girls! Put a super hero mask on the boys and bravery will soon follow. Marvel comics has exploded this year, with the reinvention of the comic book hero on film. Either of these genres will be in ample supply on the shelves. Another idea is to use the favorite cartoon character themes your children love and adore all year.

Related: Halloween Guide CBS Boston

Bringing Back The Classic 'B' Film Every Year

"There is no such thing as a bad idea at Halloween," Peter confided "Some of the worst 'B' films are revived every year at this time." It's the truth, America anticipates Freddy Kreuger, Jason and MIchael marathons with a smile and pop corn bowls in hand. "Anything can be turned into a horror theme and the beauty of it is you don't have to spend a ton of money on it. If you're handy with making props, the one thing to remember is it's time-consuming." said Buckely. Mark your calendar a few weeks ahead of trick-or-treat day and haul out the old VHS or DVDs of movies like 'Hocus Pocus' with Bette Midler, the classic film of three witches who remind us with humor of the old myths and legends leading up what we call Halloween today.

(Photo by Tim Boyle/Getty Images)

Clowns Are Creepy

"Clowns are just plain creepy." Buckley admitted. "The idea of clowns has transformed with the dawn of movies, but then again creep shows transformed into circus' way back when too!" Here is a great quiz idea for the Halloween enthusiast during this season's social gatherings: can you list all the movies in which a clown has brought fear into the hearts of it's audience? Buckely quickly listed "Remember the clown?" There is beauty in Halloween costuming as well, but bring up Stephen King's 'It" or the scene from "Poltergeist" with the seemingly innocent clown at the boys bedside, and yes, we agree! Clowns are just plain creepy!

Peter Buckley has widened his Halloween show to include the forests and glades of a well-known campground this year. If you happen to be walking through the woods, take care of what may be lingering behind a creaking elm. If you, by chance, are on the south shore this Halloween, taking your goody bag to Peter's haunted mansion will help to support a local non profit charity, and scare the wits out of you!

Related: Boston's Best Adult Halloween Parties

Freelance Writer Corinne Costantino brings the "Best of Boston" to New England. Her work can be found on

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