They say laughter is the best medicine. While we’re inundated with political mud-slinging and bad news about the nation’s economy, a kooky costume might be just what the doctor ordered.
In spite of the recession — or maybe even because of it — Everything Party owners Mark and Linda Potter don’t expect people to spend less on Halloween costumes or decor this year.
“Sales won’t suffer because people are looking for fun and diversions. Humorous suits will be in demand this year,” Linda predicted during a visit from the Redmond Reporter.
The upcoming elections are bringing in shoppers, too. Linda showed us an array of paper plates and napkins with stars, stripes and the partisan symbols, the donkey and the elephant. “You can go all out, show your support by sending these to school with your kids’ lunch,” she joked.
Masks of politicians’ faces are also selling well. “I don’t know if this means anything, but in here, Obama’s running at 53 percent, while McCain is (accounting for) 47 percent in sales,” Linda said.
Along with the Barack Obama and John McCain masks, the store carries Bill and Hillary Clinton and Al Gore. Sorry, no Sarah Palin or Joe Biden, although you could probably cobble together reasonable likenesses using some of the other Halloween supplies in stock, including wigs, eyeglasses, make-up and even shoes.
Money boas, a “Money Man” hat, goggles with dollar signs in the lenses and other money-themed items are also drawing attention. “You could pass these out and pretend you’re the Feds,” Linda suggested, gesturing to a package of oversized play money.
What else is hot for Halloween 2008?
“Hippies and groovy ‘70s accessories are popular,” she remarked. “For kids, ‘Star Wars’ is huge. It’s the 30th anniversary. They haven’t seen the movies but they know all the characters. When we first opened, 12 years ago, Pokemon was big and now it’s Pikachu all over again.”
Perennial favorites for little girls are princesses. Disney’s “High School Musical” characters and Hannah Montana are still in vogue. Cute or scary witches are also holding their own. Everything Party has a Hip Witch, Purple Punk Witch, Runway Witch and more.
For guys, “Fake weapons,” Linda stated without hesitation. “Whether they’re 14 or 24 — or older — they want to play with them.”
Thankfully, these swords, spears and other toy weapons are made of plastic or foam.
For little boys, a toddler-sized “UPS Driver” costume has been popular. Hey, the store’s just a few blocks away from Redmond’s UPS facility. And Buzz Lightyear and Woody (from the movie “Toy Story”) have become “evergreen classics,” said Linda.
For women, sexy versions of characters like Dorothy from “The Wizard of Oz” or “Alice in Wonderland” continue to fly off the store shelves.
More and more people are dressing their pooches for Halloween. Costumes for dogs include “Bad Dog” which looks like a prison inmate, “Biker Dog” and “Officer McDog.”
Guess what costumes are colder than ice this year? Pirates, which were smokin’ hot the last few Halloweens.
“We keep scary separated from the cute stuff so people with little ones can come in without fear,” Linda pointed out, leading the way through a huge selection of vampires, werewolves and ghouls, including animatronic figures that are motion-activated.
But you’ll just have to decide whether a Donald Trump wig falls into the category of funny or scary.
Halloween (Oct. 31) falls on a Friday this year, which is all the more excuse to eat, drink and make merry. Everything Party will open early and stay open later than usual that day, to accommodate procrastinators.
They’re located at 17181 Redmond Way (in the Creekside Crossing shopping center). For information, call (425) 861-0567 or visit www.everythingparty.com.