Halloween in Southern California

Photo taken by author; all rights reserved
Laguna Woods, California
October 20, 2017 8:41pm CST
It is that time of year again, when people begin to decorate their homes for Halloween in Southern California. While a number of neighborhoods are known for their decorations, my favorite is the small island in the middle of Newport Bay known as Balboa Island. It is about three miles around Balboa Island and takes about an hour to walk around it ... a little longer if you want to stop and admire all the decorations. The homeowners are very creative. One home has a giant spider which you must walk under as you stroll around the island. Another has a witch on a broom which has "crashed" into the streetlight. Still another home has a T-Rex with a skeleton hanging from the mouth, as though it has just eaten the person. Many of the neighbors have stuffed black cats on their porches, skeletons or ghosts sitting on the patio furniture, and so much more. Above is a photo I took of just one of the homes. Do you have a favorite neighborhood where you enjoy visiting during the Halloween season?
22 people like this
24 responses
@LadyDuck (118120)
• Switzerland
21 Oct
This house is even a bit too much decorated. Nobody decorates for Halloween here.
3 people like this
• Laguna Woods, California
21 Oct
@LadyDuck - I agree that house is over-decorated, which is why I enjoy going to see it. That beachfront house on Balboa Island is worth around $6 or 7 million. It even has its own boat dock and boats, which are also decorated. I cannot imagine decorating everything like that, but it is fun to look at!
2 people like this
@LadyDuck (118120)
• Switzerland
22 Oct
@DeborahDiane If they could afford a 7 million $ house, they surely hired someone to decorate.
2 people like this
@bagarad (7844)
• Paso Robles, California
22 Oct
Nobody used to decorate much for Halloween when I was growing up. All the elaborate decorations were for Christmas. On Halloween the most you would usually see was a Jack-o-lantern on the porch, or maybe some arrangement of pumpkins. Now it seems people want to decorate in some way for almost everything.
2 people like this
@RubyHawk (21455)
• Atlanta, Georgia
21 Oct
We see yards in our area with witches, ghosts, pumpkins and all sorts of Halloween decorations, Some yards are completely full thoughnot as extravagant as the one above.
3 people like this
• Laguna Woods, California
21 Oct
@RubyHawk - That is so great that people put witches, ghosts, pumpkins and other decorations in their yards. I think it is pretty rare for people to go as nuts over Halloween as they do on Balboa Island!
1 person likes this
@RubyHawk (21455)
• Atlanta, Georgia
23 Oct
@DeborahDiane Probably so. I've never seen decorations so extravagant..
1 person likes this
• Laguna Woods, California
23 Oct
@RubyHawk - Honestly, until I lived in this area, I never saw decorations this extravagant, either!
1 person likes this
@Courtlynn (46729)
• United States
21 Oct
Not many places here go all out for halloween. Sadly. Would love to see those places you mentioned.
2 people like this
• Laguna Woods, California
21 Oct
@Courtlynn - I have never lived anywhere where people put as much energy into Halloween as they do on Balboa Island!
1 person likes this
@Courtlynn (46729)
• United States
22 Oct
@DeborahDiane christmas is big here but not halloween.
1 person likes this
• Laguna Woods, California
22 Oct
@Courtlynn - Despite those Halloween decorations on Balboa Island, Christmas is much bigger here than Halloween!
1 person likes this
@LoriAMoore (9565)
• United States
21 Oct
Yes, here in Louisville it's called Hillcrest @fourwalls and I should go and scare the monsters there!
2 people like this
• Laguna Woods, California
21 Oct
@LoriAMoore - That sounds like a fun place to visit. One of our daughters used to live in Louisville and her kids were in elementary school at the time. I'll have to ask if they ever visited the Hillcrest area!
1 person likes this
@FourWalls (9443)
• United States
21 Oct
I’m banned from Halloween haunted houses for scaring the monsters......
2 people like this
• Laguna Woods, California
22 Oct
@FourWalls - Ha Ha! That's the first time I heard someone say that!
2 people like this
@DianneN (57252)
• United States
21 Oct
Very few decorate in my little town, which is fine by me. I find it gaudy. I've been to Balboa when it wasn't decorated, and it was lovely.
2 people like this
• Laguna Woods, California
21 Oct
@DianneN - No one decorates for Halloween in our retirement community. Many people decorate for Christmas and Hanukkah, however. You are right that Balboa Island is lovely throughout the year, with all the charming cottages and roses the year around. I do enjoy going and seeing all the outrageous decorations for Halloween and Christmas ... although I would never go to all that trouble myself!
2 people like this
@just4him (88850)
• Green Bay, Wisconsin
21 Oct
That owner got creative with their decorations. Great photo. I'm starting to see more decorations coming out, but not a lot on the street I live on.
2 people like this
• Laguna Woods, California
21 Oct
@just4him - I am always amazed by that particular house. I would never have thought to put so many different decorations on my home, but it is fun to look at!
2 people like this
@sallypup (20586)
• Moses Lake, Washington
21 Oct
Nope. I'd love to walk around Balboa island, whatever season it happens to be.
1 person likes this
• Laguna Woods, California
21 Oct
@sallypup - I hope you get a chance to walk around Balboa Island. It is charming any time of the year!
1 person likes this
@sallypup (20586)
• Moses Lake, Washington
22 Oct
@DeborahDiane I've been to California once. Most of my time in your state was spent wandering a 100 acre ranch so I'm guessing my feel for your state is different than yours.
1 person likes this
• Laguna Woods, California
22 Oct
@sallypup - I'm glad you got to spend time on a ranch in California. A lot of people only see scenes of California on TV and they think it is all about surfers and people skateboarding in Santa Monica. However, California has huge agricultural areas. One-half of many of the fruits, vegetables and nuts which are consumed in the US are grown in California. There is a lot of variety in the state.
1 person likes this
@YrNemo (7288)
21 Oct
Cool! Our neighborhood and the surroundings have never had that sort of devotion to Halloween. Some houses did have spider webs and some skulls dangling right at their front gates, others perhaps something spooky, but that would be it.
1 person likes this
• Laguna Woods, California
21 Oct
@YrNemo - I think it is fun that some people put up spider webs and skulls. That sounds like a treat for the children!
1 person likes this
@YrNemo (7288)
22 Oct
@DeborahDiane Something unusual to break the monotony of life I guess, kids will love anything interesting.
1 person likes this
• Laguna Woods, California
22 Oct
@YrNemo - I agree that people do a lot of this to break up the monotony, and I don't see the harm in it, if people enjoy it!
1 person likes this
@bagarad (7844)
• Paso Robles, California
21 Oct
Here in Paso Robles many of the neighbors decorate, though I don't see many houses as elaborate as the ones in your picture. This area isn't as wealthy as Balboa, either, so people can't spend too much on decorating. We see a lot of ghosts, graves, spiders with webs, and witches. And, of course, pumpkins.
1 person likes this
• Laguna Woods, California
21 Oct
@bagarad - When my kids were growing up, we had a blow-up Frankenstein which we would hang from a window. We would also put out a few big pumpkins and a few other simple decorations. We never did anything as elaborate as this!
1 person likes this
@bagarad (7844)
• Paso Robles, California
22 Oct
@DeborahDiane When we had kids, I let them do the decorating. They enjoyed it much more than I ever would.
1 person likes this
• Laguna Woods, California
22 Oct
@bagarad - Me, too! My kids always loved to decorate, paint some pumpkins, put "spiders" in the front windows, and, of course, hang up our Frankenstein. It was fun just to watch them!
1 person likes this
@Deepizzaguy (7246)
• Lake Charles, Louisiana
26 Oct
My next door neighbor has Halloween decorations. The best part to see decorations in Lake Charles is the area near the lakefront area.
1 person likes this
• Laguna Woods, California
27 Oct
@Deepizzaguy - I bet it is fun to see the decorations near the lakefront! I'm sure they reflect on the water, which makes them even better!
1 person likes this
• Lake Charles, Louisiana
27 Oct
@DeborahDiane It is very beautiful to see the decorations in the lake area of Lake Charles.
1 person likes this
• Laguna Woods, California
28 Oct
@Deepizzaguy - I hope I get to see it one day. We used to live in Dallas, TX and would visit Louisiana sometimes ... but never at Halloween, as far as I recall.
1 person likes this
• Ponce De Leon, Florida
21 Oct
There's a neighborhood like that in Portland Oregon that does up for Xmas
1 person likes this
• Laguna Woods, California
21 Oct
@thislittlepennyearns - I think most neighborhoods seem to enjoy decorating more for Christmas than they do for Halloween!
• Ponce De Leon, Florida
21 Oct
@DeborahDiane we live in the middle of nowhere
1 person likes this
• Laguna Woods, California
22 Oct
@thislittlepennyearns - There are a lot of advantages to living "in the middle of nowhere."
@ilocosboy (31562)
• Philippines
21 Oct
Seems like halloowen is even more bigger than Christmas day celebration
1 person likes this
• Laguna Woods, California
21 Oct
@ilocosboy - Actually, this island goes crazy over Christmas, too! These people just seem to love to decorate for every event!
@ilocosboy (31562)
• Philippines
21 Oct
oh wow, that could be a tourist destination because of the decorations they made during the event.
1 person likes this
• Laguna Woods, California
22 Oct
@ilocosboy - Yes, it is a tourist destination during the holidays. Many of us really look forward to seeing all the decorations!
@Marty1 (25445)
• Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania
23 Oct
I see some decorations but not many. I don't need to put out any this year as my new kitten is a black kitten I have a year round decoration.
1 person likes this
• Laguna Woods, California
23 Oct
@Marty1 - Ha Ha! I hope you keep your kitten safe inside on Halloween night!
1 person likes this
@Marty1 (25445)
• Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania
23 Oct
@DeborahDiane I will as he never goes outside! thanks for the reminder!
1 person likes this
@allen0187 (26080)
• Philippines
21 Oct
Yes, I do have couple of neighborhoods that I love visiting during Halloween. These are the posh villagers in Makati and Alabang. The homeowners always go out of their way to put up great decorations. They seem to try to outdo each other.
1 person likes this
• Laguna Woods, California
21 Oct
@allen0187 - That is wonderful! I love being able to look at someone else's decorations, without putting in a lot of energy myself!
1 person likes this
@allen0187 (26080)
• Philippines
21 Oct
1 person likes this
@Elizaby (3374)
• Pensacola, Florida
22 Oct
I try to advoid areas that are overly decorated for Halloween as I don't have nothing to do with the holiday.
1 person likes this
• Laguna Woods, California
22 Oct
@Elizaby - I can understand why you would want to avoid those places, then. It is certainly not something everyone would enjoy!
@LadyDuck (118120)
• Switzerland
21 Oct
This house is even a bit too much decorated. Nobody decorates for Halloween here.
1 person likes this
• Laguna Woods, California
22 Oct
@LadyDuck - I agree that it is too much decorated. I certainly would not do it to my house, but I enjoy seeing what other people do! It makes it fun, even for adults with grown children!
• Jacksonville, Florida
21 Oct
It's hard for kids now a days here, we have to search for a neighborhood that celebrates Halloween. That's an awesome picture!
1 person likes this
• Laguna Woods, California
21 Oct
@LovingMyBabies - Very few neighborhoods here decorate like this. That is why I enjoy going to see the gorgeous homes on this island. It is quite a treat!
• Lakewood, Colorado
21 Oct
Oh thats a lovely decoration. Well I dont drive no car so just walking around where I live is okay to look at houses.
1 person likes this
• Laguna Woods, California
21 Oct
@TiarasOceanView - Yes, looking around your own neighborhood is always a fun way to spend time!
1 person likes this
@JudyEv (96294)
• Bunbury, Australia
21 Oct
Wow! Someone has gone to a lot of trouble with those decorations. It would be really entertaining for passers-by.
1 person likes this
• Laguna Woods, California
21 Oct
@JudyEv - I agree! I would never spend so much time decorating my home, but I enjoy looking at it when someone else does it! LOL
1 person likes this
@JohnRoberts (38569)
• Los Angeles, California
21 Oct
I wonder what this house does for Christmas?
1 person likes this
• Laguna Woods, California
21 Oct
Photo taken by author; all rights reserved
@JohnRoberts - They go overboard for Christmas, too. I'll have to post a picture of the same house in December. It is fun to see what they do. They have a boat dock, too, and last year they had Santa on a paddleboard. It was pretty funny!
1 person likes this