Movies, TV inspire Halloween costumes

bmilazzo@centredaily.comOctober 25, 2013 

— Dressing up for Halloween is more than a silly tradition for the Prendergast family. It’s a requirement.

With four children ages 7 to 9, including 8-year-old twins, Lydia Prendergast said her twins wear matching outfits.

And it’s their idea, she said.

“That’s their thing,” Prendergast said. “Sometimes a mother just can’t understand the strange bond they have, when most of the year they’re ripping each others’ hair out. But this time of year, they really bond and get along, so for me and my husband, it’s probably the best month of the year before they start picking on each other again.”

This week, the Park Forest family perused the aisles of Spirit Halloween, 1101 N. Atherton St., in search of new costumes — including the twins.

Management at costume shops around State College said costume popularity is based on what’s trending; however witches, ghosts, goblins and vampires are still in.

“It somewhat depends on what new flick is out,” said Joe Gersch, store manager at Spirit Halloween. “It’s one of those times of year where a costume is the ‘it’ thing when it really has a reason to be, but then again, your old-school costumes are always a hit.”

This year, the Prendergast kids are going as the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles. Ehren, 7, will be Donatello, because her favorite color is purple; twins Brady and Jasper want to be Leonardo and Michelangelo respectively; and Zane, 9, said he will be Raphael.

“Raphael was the coolest, so as the oldest in my family, I’m naturally the coolest. He just fits me,” Zane said.

This year for kids, the hottest costumes are minions from “Despicable Me” and Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, Gersch said.

“We were running out, but we just got restocked,” he said about the costumes flying off the shelves.

Spirit Halloween is a seasonal store that annually opens up shop from Labor Day to the first weekend in November. And each year, Gersch said the popularity of costumes change.

As for adult costumes, it’s a different story. One of the hottest items this year is a twerking-themed costume that represents Miley Cyrus and Robin Thicke.

Gersch said the costume came out after the pair gave an eyebrow-raising performance at the MTV Video Music Awards this summer. The store is sold out of those costumes and will not be getting any additional shipments.

Meanwhile downtown at Gift Adventures, 137 E. Beaver Ave., manager Gary Falkins said the “Duck Dynasty” gang and the “Great Gatsby” characters are hot sellers.

His store targets teens to adults, but it also sells other Halloween accessories during the fall.

By this weekend, Falkins expects business to spike.

“It eventually gets so busy that we actually hire a bouncer at the door to regulate the crowd,” he said.

Britney Milazzo can be reached at 231-4648. Follow her on Twitter @ M11azzo.

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