Trick-or-treat, Snappeners! Does your little one already have a perfectly ghoulish costume on the brain? Good news for his inner zombie and the environment—National Costume Swap Day 2011 is approaching on October 8!

What does this day entail, you ask? A costume swap is simply a community gathering where gently used costumes are donated to be reused by other kids. According to sponsor Green Halloween, swapping half the costumes kids wear at Halloween would reduce annual landfill waste by 6,250 tons—that’s equal to the weight of 2,500 midsize cars!
National Costume Swap Day 2011 combines going green with Snappening’s main squeeze: hosting a fabulous Indianapolis event, of course! This Halloween, why not give back to the greater good and host your own swap? Follow these fright-free planning tactics for a costume gala to remember.
Those spooky planning details…

Decide on your date and hours. While National Costume Swap Day is officially the second Saturday in October, whatever day works for you and your agenda is still encouraged! If you host in a public Indianapolis event venue, be sure to schedule enough time for set up and clean up.

Secure a location (loud, tacky Halloween décor required).If you opt to host a small swap event, simply use your own living room or cleared out garage. If a few neighbors are involved, why not take it back to the good ol’ days with an all-American block party? For a larger fare, contact your local mall, library, public college, church, recreation center or find a great Indianapolis venue on Snappening.
Collect costumes. Put out a call at your church, school or neighborhood association for wacky, scary, wonderful costumes of all sizes! If you foresee issues with donations, check out your local Goodwill. Costumes should be in good to excellent condition without spots or holes (those terrifying, gory costumes excluded).

Recruit volunteers. The day of, have volunteers help kids try on costumes, set up and clean up, keep the peace—and make sure the kids don’t overdose on candy! While you will definitely want a few extra hands on deck for this Halloween event itself, recruit help to spread the word onFacebook or Twitter a few weeks in advance. Make the swap a community-wide effort!

Consider having additional activities for kids. For a larger event, consider inviting local businesses to set up tables or booths with kid-friendly activities. And as you know, you fabulous hostess you, be sure to contact all outside vendors well in advance.
Gather supplies. You’ll simply need racks or tables for costumes, hangers and a few mirrors for kids in costume to walk the runway. And, of course, a snack table. Those never put a damper on any party, right?

Time to get swapping!

Now that the event planning process is complete, the event itself should be easy as cake! Simply lay out costumes on tables or hang on racks according to size with everything clearly marked. Kids can come and go to find the perfect Halloween costume! Be sure to tell owners that they can reclaim costumes that are not swapped or donate leftovers to Goodwill.
Not looking to host? Find a National Costume Swap in a town near you and register to join the green Halloween movement with National Costume Swap Day 2011 now. The candy is sweet, but doing good for the earth is even sweeter.
Have any more great Halloween tricks up your sleeve or ideas to go green this holiday season? Share with Snappening on our Facebook orTwitter pages!