All the best ways to celebrate Halloween as a Notts student

From murder mysteries to last-minute costume ideas

Spooky season has officially arrived in Notts – the leaves are falling, the rain won’t stop and Portland Coffee is churning out a million pumpkin spice lattes a minute. Whether you’re feeling a freaky night out or a cosy night in this Halloween, we’ve got you covered.

Club nights

Notts nightlife never disappoints, and Halloween has to be one of the best nights of the year to go out out. Every year the clubs are guaranteed to be packed with students in a range of creepy, creative, and sometimes truly disturbing costumes. You can always count on the DJs of Nottingham to provide an electrifying soundtrack to your Halloween 2023. Here’s what some of the main clubs have in store this year.

Halloween treats

If the terrors of the Nottingham club scene are a little too scary for you, and you’re after a more homely (and yummy) celebration, here are three Halloween baking ideas to help you get creative in the kitchen.

Rice krispie pumpkins:

These adorable pumpkins are super easy to make and are perfect for those in catered halls with no access to an oven. Simply melt marshmallows, butter and white chocolate in the microwave and add a generous amount of orange food dye. Stir the orange gloop into your Rice Krispies, and leave it to cool down for around 20 minutes. Then run your hands under cold water (this will really help with the stickiness) and roll the mixture into balls. I cut up little chocolate pretzels to make the pumpkin stalks, and used a green icing pen to draw on some leaves. How cute!

Iced gingerbread biscuits:

Seeing as I made all of these in the same afternoon, I really couldn’t be bothered to make my own gingerbread. Please accept my sincerest apologies. I picked up a pack of 30 from the supermarket and some icing pens, which it turns out is all you need to entertain my housemate and I for a good half an hour.

Red velvet cake:

This was the tastiest of the three. I thought red velvet was apt for Halloween, but it can be swapped for your favourite cake flavour if you prefer; the real fun is in the decorations. Eating spiders becomes so much more appealing when they’re made out of caramel nibbles.

Movie Night

Gather the housemates, snuggle up in your pyjamas, and enjoy your baked goods with a whipped cream topped hot chocolate in front of a nail biting horror film. The aim is to generate all the adrenaline and be genuinely petrified when it’s over. You know you’ve watched a proper scary movie when you have to grab a lacrosse stick and scour the house for intruders before bedtime.

Pumpkin carving

Affordable and wholesome, pumpkin carving is a great way to celebrate Halloween sober for students. Bonus points if you pick the pumpkins from a patch yourself, and make pumpkin soup with the insides! Please remember to be careful with knives, and to throw them out when they get gross – carved pumpkins tend to only last three to five days before they go yucky!

Escape rooms

Nottingham is home to many different escape rooms, including one located within the cave system in an old World War Two air raid bunker, and one immersed in VR. Escape rooms are the perfect way to celebrate Halloween whilst also testing the critical thinking skills that uni promised to provide us with.

Visit the Haunted Museum

Located on Derby Road and open from 11am to 6pm every day of the week, this museum is a relatively new addition to Notts. No booking is required to take yourself round on a spooktacular tour of all the haunted artefacts curated. There is a cinema showing mostly paranormal programmes, and a takeaway only café. The museum also holds paranormal investigations through to the early hours of the morning. I personally will be going nowhere near that, but if you want authentic Halloween festivities that leave you cursed and traumatised, this is most likely your best bet.

Murder Mysteries

There’s a plethora of Cluedo-esque game packs you can purchase online which are the perfect chilled night in Halloween activity – invite your friends over for a dinner party, acquire several bottles of merlot, light some tall candles, and live in an Agatha Christie novel for an evening.

If you have a SO and fancy a Halloween themed date night, run a bubble bath, get in and listen to a murder mystery podcast trying to decipher it together.

Costume Ideas

There’s little worse than the panic of finding a last minute Halloween costume when you’re completely uninspired. Here are a few quick-fire ideas to get the cogs turning:

  • Alice from Alice in Wonderland.
  • Alien.
  • Ant and Seb from X Factor.
  • Angel.
  • Barbie.
  • Bumblebee.
  • Black cat.
  • Boris Johnson (very scary).
  • Britney Spears.
  • Bunch of grapes.
  • Bunny.
  • Camo soldier.
  • Caveman/Cavewoman.
  • Cher from Clueless.
  • Cowboy/Cowgirl.
  • Devil.
  • Fairy.
  • Gemma Collins.
  • Ghost.
  • Granny.
  • Greek God/Goddess.
  • Harley Quinn.
  • Harry Styles.
  • Hippie.
  • Joker.
  • Ken.
  • Ladybug.
  • Mad Hatter.
  • Maeve Wiley.
  • Marilyn Monroe.
  • Nun.
  • Nurse.
  • M.I.L.F and motherf*cker.
  • Paul Hollywood and Prue Leith from Great British Bake Off.
  • Percy Pig.
  • Pitbull.
  • Plastics from Mean Girls.
  • Policeman/woman.
  • Power Ranger.
  • Pumpkin.
  • Queen of Hearts.
  • Rod Stewart.
  • Scarecrow.
  • Shrek.
  • Spy.
  • Superhero.
  • Trisha Paytas in one of her many forms.
  • Victoria’s secret model.
  • Witch.
  • 1920s flapper girl.
  • 1950s housewife.
  • 2000s Paris Hilton

So there you have it: A rundown of the best ways to spend spooky season as a Notts student. Happy haunting!

Related articles recommended by this author:

• The ultimate student guide of all the events in Notts for Halloween 2023

I built a Halloween costume for under £10, here’s how all Notts students can too

• Six of the best group costume ideas for Notts students to try this Halloween