AZA News Releases

Add Green to Your Halloween!

Silver Spring, MD – The Association of Zoos and Aquariums (AZA) and Green Halloween® have partnered to provide communities with healthy, animal-friendly and EEK-O-friendly Halloween events for the whole family.

Green Halloween and AZA are providing trick-or-treaters with ways to celebrate that are healthy for them and their animal friends. Family- and Earth-friendly events are occurring at 50 participating zoo and aquarium locations.

Events and booths will show goblins and grownups how to apply the 3Rs- Reduce, Reuse, Recycle- to Halloween activities to help create healthier traditions for kids and the Earth. For example, conventional candy will be swapped for healthier, eco-friendly treats, and families can participate in spooktacular recycled animal crafts and green costume contests.

If a local zoo or aquarium is not sponsoring a Green Halloween event, there are many great ways to participate at home. Simple tips to make your Halloween healthier and greener include:

  • Used to giving out handfuls? Cut back by 25%. Kids won't notice the difference, but you'll save money.

  • Prefer to hand out treasures? Empty your kids' pockets! Get inspired by the treasures they store—shiny rocks, feathers, sea shells. Stock up on these types of items and offer a choice.
  • Looking for alternatives to conventional candy? Choose healthier treats that everyone from toddlers to teens will love including snack bars, organic lollipops, fruit snacks, or all natural gum. Be sure to read the label and purchase treats that do not use palm oil, or treats that contain palm oil that has been certified as orangutan-friendly.
  • Always purchase new costumes? This year, SWAP! National Costume Swap Day is October 9th, so before heading to the big box store, look for a local costume swap.In the habit of buying new Halloween décor every year? Try exchanging old for new-to-you décor with friends and neighbors, or find decorations at your local Goodwill. Consider using edible items like pumpkins and other types of squash that can be turned into yummy soups and dishes after Halloween. Host a make-it-take-it décor party before the big day. Pull out every black, purple or orange item in your home and decorate with those. Search online for how to make décor out of items you'd normally toss.
Hundreds of other suggestions are available at, along with ways everyone can participate. Schools, community and government groups, dentists and doctors, all will find easy-to-implement ideas. Look for official Green Halloween® events in your local area by visiting or create your own with tips and resources from for Green Halloween and its sponsors.

Green Halloween is a non-profit, grassroots community initiative that helps families celebrate healthier and environmentally-friendly holidays, starting with Halloween. It is a non-profit program of EcoMom® Alliance. For more information about Green Halloween or Celebrate Green or to obtain photos, contact 

About AZA

Founded in 1924, the Association of Zoos and Aquariums is a nonprofit organization dedicated to the advancement of zoos and aquariums in the areas of conservation, education, science, and recreation. Look for the AZA logo whenever you visit a zoo or aquarium as your assurance that you are supporting a facility dedicated to providing excellent care for animals, a great experience for you, and a better future for all living things. AZA is a leader in global wildlife conservation, and your link to helping animals in their native habitats.


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