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Hitting “The Town” On Halloween

To prepare for this year’s edition of The Halloween Insider (send us your product info!), Associate Editor Mackenzie Allison and I trekked out to the Queens headquarters of Rubie’s Costume Co., in Richmond Hill. It wasn’t the first time I’d been there, but it was the first time in seven years, and my first since The Halloween Insider was founded.

The storefront takes up two levels on the train next Jamaica Avenue and is filled with vibrant and popular costumes. Once you enter, the costumes are all behind the counter and hanging above you, with dozens of people ready to help you. There are catalogs on each counter with a different set of getups: there are hundreds upon hundreds of costumes to choose from. The most expensive of these are the Halo and Storm Trooper full-body armor costumes, which run around $800. I asked a salesperson if he sold any of these and he said he had, to people trying to win a radio contest.

I then asked what the most popular costumes of the season were. The first, he said, was Avatar. No surprise there. The second was the surprise, and a tribute to the ingenuity that Halloween brings out. He said people wanted to dress like the bank robbers in The Town (above), with the nun outfits and masks, presumably because they saw it on the poster. Rubie’s didn’t have the masks, but they had the nun outfits, which had been flying off the shelves as people went elsewhere in search of the masks. Interesting stuff.

This isn’t the end of  TLB’s Halloween store-visit adventure. Let us know of any stores/sites to check out as we do research for this year’s Insider. Tough job, we know.

—Bryan Joiner

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