Halloween stores beam over successful season | NevadaAppeal.com

Halloween stores beam over successful season

Nick Coltrain
ncoltrain@nevadaappeal.com

When the zombies, pirates and princesses come a-lurchin’, swaggerin’ and sashayin’ this Halloween, it’ll be proof of at least one thing: It was a good year for Carson’s costume superstores.

Open since Sept. 3 and 23, respectively, Spirit Halloween and Halloween City have been peddling fantasy and horror in Carson City, with both on Friday calling it a successful season.

“We’re almost beating (the Sparks store). Almost,” Sarah Burgess, executive manager of the local Halloween City said – a special boast given this is the first time her company has had a Carson City-area location, this time in the Topsy Lane shopping center.

Their anecdotal reports follow the projections set out by the National Retail Federation of higher Halloween spending per-person than anytime since 2005, the oldest data available. This year, an NRF poll found consumers will spend an average of $72.31 per person, an almost 50 percent increase over 2005 and $6 more than last year. Total Halloween spending in the U.S. is expected to reach $6.86 billion, according to the NRF..

Kelly Texeira, store manager at Spirit Halloween in the Carson Mall, said they still feel the effects of the sour economy, but consumers are looking for quality Halloween gear instead of lots of lower-quality products.

“It’s a good year,” she said Friday. “Every year we have happy customers is a good year.”

She, like Burgess, said zombies are at the top of the list of costumes this year – an observation reinforced by a NRF poll. For adults, going as a zombie jumped from No. 7 to No. 4, and on the children’s side, it jumped from No. 22 to No. 9. Texeira also pointed to the Zombie Crawl events held in the area as a possible reason for the local boost.

But how to be the best zombie? Burgess said it is all in the quality of make up and fake blood. Texeira emphasized the creativity of the soon-to-be-dead.

Per-person spending

2005: $48.48

2006: $59.06

2007: $64.82

2008: $66.54

2009: $56.31

2010: $66.28

2011: $72.31

2011’s most popular costumes

Adults:

1. Witch

2. Pirate

3. Vampire

4. Zombie

5. Batman character

Children:

1. Princess

2. Witch

3. Spiderman

4. Pirate

5. Pumpkin

Source: National Retail Federation polls.