Poll: When Should Kids Stop Trick-or-Treating?

When do you think that kids are too old to participate in trick or treating?

In my house, the rule is “when you’re as tall or taller than me”. I’m 5’4 1/2", and have only boys, so that works out to be about 13. I am pretty sure this will be my 12 year-old’s last year, as puberty is ready to strike at any moment. My 19- and 17-year olds stopped about that time, as well. My reasoning is that giving out candy to someone you have to look up at, and hearing a deep voice say trick or treat is just silly. In my opinion, trick or treating is for little kids, and once you’ve hit puberty, you’re past that, and now you have parties you can go to that are more in line with your age.

What’s your rule?

It’s a moot point for me, as I don’t have kids and I live out in the sticks where nobody trick-or-treats. But I’d say as long as they’re willing to wear a costume, yell “TRICK OR TREAT!!” when I open the door, and say “Thank you” when they leave, they can trick-or-treat until they’re 137.

Unfortunately, several years ago when I helped my townie friend distribute candy, I didn’t see much evidence of this from any age cohort. Another childhood tradition down the tubes.

My opinion is that the kid will decide for himself when he feels too embarassed to go out in public in a costume for free candy.

Yeah, but some kids have no shame!:stuck_out_tongue:

I answered 12 but I have no problem with older kids as long as they’re either escorting younger siblings/neighborhood kids or they come later after the younger kids are pretty much finished.

Me, for instance.

Honestly, I’m all for extending Halloween into adolescence. Why the heck not?

My boy is fourteen and still wants to go. He hasn’t been through any visible puberty though.

My nineteen year old daughter is mourning because she wants to go too, and knows she’s too old!

Don’t get me wrong- I’ll still give out candy to anybody that knocks, if I’m home. But if you’re 27, I will think you’re silly.

I voted for 12, but 13 is more the cut-off age. No teen-agers.

My neighborhood gets TONS of Trick or Treaters (between 350-450 kids in a 2-hour period). We do the whole “haunted house” thing out front. We get lots of teenagers, and as long as they’re wearing some semblance of a costume, I’m more than happy to give them a treat. Although one year, a surly teen girl walked up with a cigarette dangling from her lip. Somehow, when you’re old enough to smoke while Trick or Treating, it’s time to pack it in.

It’s actually a challenge to us to be able to scare the older kids! Getting a teenage boy to scream like a girl is the ultimate reward…

18-19 was my cutoff. I trick-or-treated every year until then because it was so much fun and hey, free candy!

Yeah, when I get my vampire stuff going, it’s always the older kids that wet themselves. The preschoolers just think it’s awesome.

Yup. You’ve got to wear a costume to get candy, though I’ll give candy to an older sibling escorting little kids even if they’re not in costume.

I answered 12 in the poll, but for me, the difference is “are they wearing a costume?, carrying a bag?, polite?” I get too many kids, no costume, no sack, they just expect me to hand them some free candy and they just stand there when you open the door. (No “trick or treat!”) No candy from my house and stay off my lawn!

Also older kids taking little kids around get extra candy at my house. Totally different scenario.

I was going to start a thread like this.

Oh well, anyway, I quit when I was 13 and even then I felt to old. So I find it strange when I get a knock at the door and a couple of kids are standing there (usually girls), who I’m guessing are around 16, in costume wanting candy. I give it to them and I’m very polite, but in my mind I’m wondering what the hell they’re doing trick-or-treating at their age.

My parents wouldn’t let me go after I turned 12. I think that was a year or two too early – most of my friends still went until 13 or 14, so it was kind of lame to have to stay home based on that arbitrary number. So, I’d start discouraging it when they turn 13, but not draw a hard line until 14 or so.

As long as they’re having fun with it–which in the case of my sons was also about 13. After that they preferred to stay home and think up things to freak out the ToTers.

Like, one son dressed up as a scarecrow. Old hat with straw coming out, full fake beard, stuffed shirt with straw sticking out, big gloves. He sat in the front yard at an odd angle. When the kids walked up he leaped up to welcome them. We heard screams all night. (Most of them loved it.)

Also, 13 coincided with braces for some of my sons.

But mainly, they didn’t want to be the tallest ones going around trick-or-treating.

I agree I am not going to tell anybody to buzz off, but if you are old enough to buy your own candy, I will be doing an internal eyeroll.

My parents made me stop at 15. I was bummed at the time but they said I could keep any candy that I could scare kids into dropping. I ended up getting my biggest haul ever. After telling my friends they all came over the next couple of year and helped me create a haunted maze in my front yard. since we had to split it the haul wasn’t as big but we made a freshmen girl wet herself my senior year.

Once I got to college we had to walk through a neighborhood from the practice field to the locker room and we’d always trick-or-treat our way back to the locker room with our helmets at bags. It was a lot of fun and the adults always seemed to enjoy us.

I think as long as your having fun and you’re not taking away from the fun of the little kids you should go for it.

The older they get, the better – and hotter – their costumes should be.

I hate it when trick or treaters don’t even dress up.