Neighborhoods in the Halloween Spirit: Ranking the Top Trick-or-Treating Communities Close to Campus

Helena Hu and Julia Kim

As fog settles on Oct. 31, and neighbors creep out of their dimly lit homes, the tradition of trick-or-treating in Irvine has people young and old out of their homes at dusk, ready for a night of festivities. As you begin to plan your Halloween night, we have decided to rank the best Irvine neighborhoods to help you have the best sugar-and spook-filled night.

Adorned with looming cow webs, cackling witch sounds and eerie shadows every year, Woodbury has the perfect selection of Halloween decor and candy. Many streets, especially the ones near Lamplighter Park or Magnolia Park, are illuminated with things like gravestone decorations on driveways, inviting trick-or-treaters in. Residents have gone all-out with fog machines and dim lighting, and some will even give out king-sized candy. Although the community recently retired its annual house-decorating contest, the spirit of Halloween is clearly still there.

A neighborhood notorious for having big bowls of candy situated outside artistically decorated homes with pumpkins, webs and witches. While streets are not as festive as Woodbury, you will see a handful of homes featuring some sort of Halloween festivity. The haunted houses are few and far between, but the select few that do decide to go all out are worth stopping by. Stonegate’s homes are quite spread out, making trick-or-treating an all-night event where you can pair a nice October night stroll with a handful of sugar.

Portola Springs
While you may expect some of the newer neighborhoods to have the greatest Halloween festivities, Portola Springs is considerably lackluster compared to Woodbury or Stonegate. There are a few homes on Pathway or Cienega that feature the classic jack-o-lantern or cauldron, but houses do not excel in decor. However, there have been streets near Ridgeview Park that have utilized the driveway space to build a spine-chilling experience with sound effects and hanging skeletons. In terms of candy, classic chocolate bars, Twizzlers or Sour Patch will show up, but nothing too fancy like Stonegate’s “take-all-you-want” candy bowls. However, in the past year, new residential areas have joined Portola Springs – specifically up on Portola Parkway and Altair – that may feature a twist to the normally quiet neighborhood.