Boise & Garden City

What’s hot at Boise Halloween shops this year? Hint: Not clowns

Halloween costume hunters in Boise favor superheroes over clowns

The "creepy clown" hysteria in the U.S. in recent weeks hasn't much impacted Halloween costume sales in Boise. Get a peek at some of what's popular this year.
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The "creepy clown" hysteria in the U.S. in recent weeks hasn't much impacted Halloween costume sales in Boise. Get a peek at some of what's popular this year.

Boise mom Laura Johns and her two young children were on a hunt for Halloween costumes Thursday afternoon.

Her daughter Casey, 4, quickly decided she wanted to be Ariel from “The Little Mermaid.” The little girl stopped abruptly several times as she walked the aisles of Halloween City.

“I already saw the clown face right there,” said Casey. Without any prompting, she pointed out clown-related items inside the pop-up holiday shop near Best Buy on Franklin Road in Boise.

Clowns are on people’s minds lately — even little people — but not in a positive way, thanks to the “creepy clown” online trolling campaign sweeping the country. And there isn’t much demand for clownwear at Boise Halloween shops, according to staff at two stores.

“I wouldn’t say we’ve had a spike,” said Kevin Wardle, assistant manager at Spirit Halloween. In fact, one of his coworkers said one customer decided against dressing up as a clown because of the hubbub.

Tim Woodard, assistant manager at Halloween City, and a fellow employee recalled selling just two clown costumes (only one was “creepy,” by the way).

Superheroes are always popular with kids and adults. Characters from the movies “Deadpool” and “Suicide Squad” are among the top sellers this year at local costume shops.

“We’ve sold out of Catwoman,” Woodard said.

Costumes from the video games “World of Warcraft” and “The Legend of Zelda” are also in demand, as are those from the “Attack on Titan” game and manga franchise.

It’s a big election year, and the costume shops have a large selection of Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton masks and wigs.

For $12.99, you can get a mask of Trump frowning, yelling or smirking at Spirit Halloween. The store also have smiling and “surprise” Hillary masks.

Halloween City also has Trump and Clinton masks, along with a couple of fun extras — red “Great Again” hats (apparently they couldn’t use Trump’s full slogan, “Make America Great Again”) and Insta Bake bronzer.

If animatronic decorations are your thing — creepy creatures that flash, jump, howl or scream — you’ll want to check out Spirit Halloween.

Katy Moeller: 208-377-6413, @KatyMoeller

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