A full circle celebration, Halfway to Halloween

Born in the isolation of a Northfield, Minnesota winter, Halfway to Halloween rapidly grew into a global phenomenon, at least in the mind of its founder, Charlie Biskupic.

He should have been writing a term paper on that fateful day in 2007. Instead, he invented a holiday.

“It had been a long winter,” he said. “I envisioned a holiday that would bring people together, one built on half the effort and twice the fun.”

That became the battle cry, as event planners Charlie and his friends invited students at St. Olaf College to put on a less-than-spectacular costume and meet outside. Since then, on or near the last weekend in April, Halfway to Halloween parties have sprung up in Minnesota, Chicago, and New York (a trajectory that not coincidentally followed the founder’s career path.)

Naturally underscored by Bon Jovi, a classic American hair band, “Wooah, we’re halfway there…”, Halfway to Halloween might have died once its founding members graduated and made their way out into the world. Instead, it has gathered steam.

This past weekend marked a milestone for the young holiday, a simultaneous bi-state celebration. We attended the Madison, Wisconsin version, which featured live acappella music, and a ticket line that stretched halfway around the block.

Meanwhile, in Harlem, Charlie presided over his traditional soiree.

Enjoy these pictures of a raucous evening, and plan now for your own Halfway to Halloween party…but don’t plan too well. Remember the battle cry: Half the effort, twice the fun.

Ashlee and Kwame
Winners of the Halfway to Halloween Harlem edition Ashlee and Kwame. Ashlee dressed as Haymitch from the Hunger Games, but forgot half her costume, which, of course, made it the perfect costume for the evening. The winning prizes? Half-priced (and then some) Easter baskets
Host and Halfway to Halloween founder Charlie Biskupic likes a mellow party vibe.
Host and Halfway to Halloween founder Charlie Biskupic likes a mellow party vibe.
Halfway to Halloween Cinco de Derby
The 2013 version, half a Halfway to Halloween Party, one quarter Cinco de Mayo, and one quarter Kentucky Derby. It was a very festive day.
Halfway to Halloween 2011 Black Swan
Katherine Biskupic won the Chicago Halfway to Halloween costume prize for her Black Swan (half human, half swan) ensemble in 2012.
Halfway to Acapellaween line to get in
The line to get into Fundamentally Sound’s Halfway to Halloween Concert at the Orpheum in Madison stretched halfway around the block. Fortunately, a street musician with a half-open guitar case kept us all entertained while we waited.
Halfway to Acappellaween 031
I honestly have no idea what half these costumes were, but the music, once again, knocked our socks off.
Halfway to Acappellaween 061
The man in the yellow hat found Waldo and presented him to the king…right?
Halfway to Acappellaween 068
Check out their YouTube channel. These boys can really sing.
Halfway to Acappellaween 073
The spring concert always includes tributes and sad goodbyes to the graduating members.
Halfway to Acappellaween 107
AcappellaWeen….He may have stolen the concept from his brother, but I like to think Vinnie and his Acappella group were, once again, just spreading the joy.
Halfway to Acappellaween 109
Acappella fans holding Croatian signs I halfway understood.
Halfway to Acappellaween 112
Half our group stuck around for pictures at the end of the concert.
Halfway Poster Black Eye patch
I can’t explain the eye patch, or the facial stitches, but I get the Bon Jovi reference and I’m tickled that people half my age still listen to classic hair bands.

3 thoughts on “A full circle celebration, Halfway to Halloween

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.