The 2012 Halloween Index

The metros best primed for trick-or-treating and Halloween revelry.

Today and tonight are the times when kids across America come out for trick-or-treating. For the second year, we tracked down the metros best primed for trick-or-treating and Halloween revelry.

For this year's "Halloween Index," Kevin Stolarick and my Martin Prosperity Institute (MPI) colleagues focused on five factors that make for a great Halloween metro area — population density (which makes for efficient trick-or-treating), kids ages five to 14 (as a share of metro population), and median income (a measure of regional affluence), as well as candy stores and costume rental stores per one hundred thousand people.

Map by MPI's Zara Matheson

The map above by MPI's Zara Matheson charts the results. The orange dots show the top on the overall index; the black dots highlight the top metros in each of the five categories. The table below lists the top 25 metros on the Halloween Index. The list is a mix of large, small, and medium-sized metros spread across the United States.

Table by MPI's Michelle Hopgood; Data from MPI

Chicago takes the top spot, followed by Poughkeepsie-Newburgh-Middletown, New York; Trenton-Ewing, New Jersey; Colorado Springs, Colorado; and Racine, Wisconsin. Bridgeport-Stamford-Norwalk, Connecticut; Detroit, San Jose, Milwaukee, and Oxnard-Thousand Oaks-Ventura, California, round out the top ten.

Alexandria, Louisiana, wins for the most costume rental stores per capita. Ocean City, Maryland, has the most candy stores per capita, and Laredo, Texas, has the highest percentage of young people.

About the Author

  • Richard Florida is Co-founder and Editor at Large of CityLab.com and Senior Editor at The Atlantic. He is director of the Martin Prosperity Institute at the University of Toronto and Global Research Professor at NYU. More
    Florida is author of The Rise of the Creative ClassWho's Your City?, and The Great Reset. He's also the founder of the Creative Class Group, and a list of his current clients can be found here