Each October since 2008, store windows in downtown Falls Church have come alive with images of bats, witches, scarecrows, pumpkins and ghosts--the friendly kind through the Falls Church Halloween Window Painting Festival.
This year, Falls Church Arts is not sponsoring the event because of the coronavirus threat.
However, the tradition will continue, coordinated by the George Mason High School PTA.
See the gallery on this site for past years' paintings. Check the Painter's Tips section below for instructions.
We supply the paint.
But please bring brushes, water and shoe boxes for carrying cups of paint.
Newspapers and paper towels for spills are important just in case.
A kitchen step stool is needed for tall windows.
Please protect window sills with masking tape and papers.
Wipe window down with dry paper towels. Don't use Windex or other cleaners, which leave a film.
If your scene has light colors, you can put down a solid background "wash" color first. A light grey color works well.
Be sure to sign your beautiful work and take some photos. Check back at the desk when finished and get a (chocolate) kiss.
Keep your images big and bold so more passers-by can see them.
Start with darker colors first and let first coats have time to dry. Dabbing paint on a little at a time can make your images stand out.
Foam brushes are OK if they are dry, but brushes are best. Brown's Hardware has both
Painters (and parents) are responsible for cleaning the windows, between No 1-4. But it's fun, too.
Sponges, old towels, newspapers and plenty of water required.
Put newspapers down on the sidewalk. Soak the painting thoroughly with water, then sponge off. Then a second wash should finish everything.