Blog: River-inspired Halloween Costumes

Emily Cooper


Ahh, Halloween: the spookiest time of the year. At The Rivers Trust, we love Halloween: the pumpkins, the leftover sweets, the decorations, the costumes... What's that, you haven't decided on a costume yet?! Lucky for you, rivers are quite literally overflowing with scary stuff, so they're a great source of inspiration for Halloween. We've come up with four river-themed outfits which will make you shiver!

Combined Sewer Overflow

What could be scarier than raw sewage pouring into our rivers? For a bit of extra flare, consider draping wet wipes over your arms. If you’re feeling really adventurous, stick a sanitary towel to your forehead. You could probably achieve the same effect by taking a dip in your local river following rainfall, but we wouldn't recommend that.

Weir victim

This is a great one, because it comes with a back story. You’re an Atlantic salmon; the product of a bloodline spanning millennia, tasked with the responsibility of continuing your lineage. All you have to do is swim upstream to your spawning grounds—easy, right? As you make your way up the river, an ominous shadow looms in the distance: a weir. You make your way up the first one, but like a nightmare, even more weirs stretch out in front of you—each one seemingly higher than the the one before. Your fins are exhausted. Calling on your last reserves of energy, you propel yourself into the air—but not high enough. The weir has claimed another victim.

Plastic monster

Plastic pollution puts fear into the heart of even the most seasoned conservationists. There's nothing scarier than the accumulation of plastic in our precious freshwater habitats! The best part about this costume is you can easily source everything needed from the banks of your local river! Disposable coffee cups, masks and plastic bags could make a really nice addition to this outfit.

Himalayan balsam

Ahh, Himalayan balsam. The non-native invader which now dominates the banks of rivers across the nation. Get into character by dominating the conversation with unproductive chit-chat, and throw seeds across the room if anyone dares to brush past you. Better yet, attend a party you're not even invited to! That's the true spirit of Himalayan balsam. Make sure the party you’re attending isn’t hosted by any Rivers Trust employees or volunteers, though; we’ve heard they love a bit of balsam bashing.
The problems described above aren't isolated issues, sadly: sewage pollution, plastic pollution, man-made barriers and invasive species are the scourge of many rivers across the world. Sometimes, caring about rivers can make Halloween feel like a daily occurence; each day brings new terrifying facts to light, and it's often hard to see the light through the shadows. If you care about rivers, please consider making a small donation to our cause; your help can make a huge difference. If you're not in the position to donate, you may want to sign up to our newsletter to stay up-to-date with the latest developments in the Rivers Trust movement. In all seriousness, we do hope you have a lovely Halloween—although it's hard to think of what could be scarier than the year we've already had. Make sure you stay safe, stay socially distanced, and above all, eat as much chocolate as you can!
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