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Scary Halloween Sound Effects

Source: Halloween 2000, Volume 2000 Special Issue 2000


Sometimes, Halloween just happens to land on a beautiful day. Curses! Don't let a little sunshine spoil your fun; you can brew your own storm at home and make it as thunderous as you like. Below are a few examples of how ordinary domestic items can be used to transform your house into one teeming with poltergeists. Once you've mastered a few sound effects, you can use them to create a soundtrack for scary storytelling (enlist the help of a partner who can work behind-the-scenes) or tape-record your repertoire and plan on turning up the volume when trick-or-treaters come knocking. Supplement with the Bach Fugue in D Minor and your best werewolf howl, and you may even scare up some real ghosts.


  1. Fire
    Crinkle a piece of cellophane or waxed paper to mimic a crackling flame. For large fires, use several sheets and several pairs of hands.

  2. Ghostly Footsteps
    Slowly knock the heels of leather-soled shoes together or against a wooden floor. The scariest sound is of steps coming from an attic.

  3. Wind
    Fold a sheet of waxed paper over a comb. Hum, or blow softly with your lips against the paper-covered teeth for a howling wind.

  4. Gurgling Bog
    Use a drinking straw to blow bubbles at the surface of a glass of water. Vary the rhythm of the bubbles to bring the slimy bog eerily to life.

  5. Rain
    Pour dry, uncooked rice into a metal tray or baking pan. Vary the speed for realistic-sounding rain, and accompany with thunder.

  6. Grasp one side of a sheet of poster board; shake hard to make a thunderclap, and then taper off for distant, echoing rumbles.

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