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The Daily Tar Heel

Halloween on Franklin Street is one of the highlights of the semester. This year the spooky season spans two weekends, as folks are hosting themed parties before and after Halloween. Going out and navigating party culture at Carolina always presents some challenges, and we want to help you have a ghoulishly good time.

Here are some of our tips to avoid a Halloween scare.

1. Have a plan for the night.
Oct. 31 sees tens of thousands of people on the streets of downtown Chapel Hill. It’s easy to get lost admiring all the costumes and be squished between people. So, make sure you and your friends establish checkpoints at specific times and locations throughout the night. Also, it's good to have a meeting place in mind for the end of the evening to regroup before everyone heads their separate ways.

2. Go with friends and STAY with them.
Traveling with one or two friends is much safer than going alone. If you do get separated, though, follow tip one.

3. Hydrate before you die-drate.
Between the stuffy costumes, Franklin Street trekking and party beverages, water will be your friend. Your morning-after self will thank you, too.

4. You don’t need to go to frats.
Frats, shmats… A lot of new students at Carolina think that frats are the only place to go to have a good time, but we'd say that house parties are way more fun.

5. Your phone might not have signal.
Large crowds can jam cellular networks. This makes it hard to text or call your friends during Halloween on Franklin Street. Prepare for this scenario by following tips one and two.

6. Don’t lose that lightsaber!
Costume accessories that look like weapons, alcoholic beverages and glass bottles are just a few of the things prohibited on Franklin Street this Halloween. If you’re going as a cowboy or pirate, keep that next-level prop at home.

7. Failing an exam is scary.
No amount of fun is worth doing poorly on a midterm the next day. If you need to study, skip the Thursday night festivities. Halloweekend can be just as fun, plus there’s always next year.

8. Claustrophobia.
The Halloween crowds on Franklin Street have ranged in size from just below 30,000 to around 80,000 people. If you get claustrophobic easily, stick to the outskirts of downtown and avoid the Franklin and Columbia streets intersection.

9. Get a good group costume.
A group of Power Rangers? Dora the Explorer and gang? Charlie and the wood pole from the film "Hereditary"? The possibilities are endless. Coordinating with friends is lots of fun and is sure to elicit wows this Halloween.

10. Staying in and watching a good scary movie is fine, too.                                                                                                 If none of this sounds appealing, just know that Halloween on Franklin Street and the festivities following are not required activities. Cozying up with candy and popcorn can be just as ~spooktacular~. If you still need to scratch a haunting itch, the Carolina Union and the Morehead Planetarium are hosting Halloween-themed events this month. 

What matters most this Halloween is that you have a great time regardless of how you choose to celebrate. Be safe, be spooky and have a happy Halloween, Tar Heels.

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