For some people, going bar crawling during a torrential downpour might still sound like a totally fun thing to do this Halloween. But if we're being objective about this, then according to one study, Houstonians are in for one of the top 10 worst Halloweens in the country this year.
WalletHub ranked Houston No. 91 in a data dump called “Best and Worst Cities for Halloween,” which included the 100 most populous U.S. cities. To tally each city's score, the site used 16 different metrics, mainly revolving around safety and surroundings, parties and activities, and Halloween weather. Sure, Houston's average price for a Halloween party ticket ($22.16) may not be so bad, clocking in at No. 38. But the forecast for October 31 — 100 percent chance of rain and thunderstorms, potential for flooding and winds up to 20 miles per hour — kind of screwed us over, putting us in 99th place for Halloween weather. And our performance in any of the other 15 categories — such as candy stores and movie theaters showing horror flicks per 100,000 residents (Nos. 80 and 97 respectively) — didn't really help our case either.
The closest we came to non-mediocre/not generally terrible standings was for number of amusement parks (No. 24, with nine) and percentage of people age 14 and under who will probably show up at your door asking for candy (No. 27, with a little more than one-fifth of residents being age-appropriate trick-or-treaters).
And speaking of trick-or-treaters, you might want to think twice about where exactly you decide to go knocking, considering WalletHub somehow managed to rank Houston's crime rate and neighborhood security worse than Chicago's — a city bearing the nickname “Chiraq” because of frequent gunfire and violence (No. 71 compared to 50). Houston is home to that age-old story of “The Candy Man,” a.k.a. “The Man Who Killed Halloween,” a.k.a. the Deer Park man who killed his son with poisoned Pixy Stix on Halloween night 1974. So maybe the whole poisoning-children's-candy thing had something to do with that ranking. That's our best guess, anyway.
In any case, stay safe out there — and dry.
Go here for a complete listing of Houston's Halloween events. Below is a complete listing of Houston's score in all 16 categories and a map of all other rankings:
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SAFETY & SURROUNDINGS (Overall ranking: 63)
Percentage of the Population Age 14 or Younger: 21.3% (27)
Percentage of Occupied Housing Units: 89.6% (57)
Population Density: 3,559 (49)
Walk Score: 44.2 (38)
Crime Rate: 71
Pedestrian Fatality Rate 1.70 (43)
PARTIES & ACTIVITIES (Overall ranking: 53)
Average Price of a Halloween Party Ticket: $22.16 (38)
Number of Halloween Costume Stores per 100,000 Residents: 1.116 (68)
Number of Candy Stores per 1000,000 Residents: 1.47 (80)
Number of Movie Theaters per 100,000 Residents: 0.73 (97)
Average Movie Ticket Price: $9.85 (340
Number of Bars per 100,000 Residents: 47.62 (36)
Number of Amusement Parks: 9 (24)
Acres of Land Under Pumpkin Harvest: N/A
HALLOWEEN WEATHER: 99