|Written by Paul D. Race for HalloweenTrains.com(tm), BigChristmasTrains.com(tm), and BigIndoorTrains.com(tm)|
Disney Village Notice! - Every few years Hawthorne Village offers a village collection based on Disney themes. Every set sells out very fast. At the moment, a new Disney Halloween set is featured on this page. I don't want to sound alarmist, but if they're still available by Halloween, 2014, I'll be surprised. This is especially true because Hawthorne village did not introduce any other new Halloween village collections this year, and at least one of the 2013 villages has also been selling very well.
Although Christmas villages date back over a century (using cardboard or wooden houses), Halloween villages didn't reach prominence until modern ceramic Christmas villages became popular.
Dept. 56(r) has made several nice Halloween-themed collection and a few one-offs. They usually use ceramic or china-like construction, with resin parts where appropriate. When possible, Dept. 56 historically preferred to channel their products to the consumer through gift stores and other brick-and-mortar stores, so if you didn't live near a good supplier, you may have been at a disadvantage.
That said, since the original "Snow Village" led to modern ceramic Halloween village as well, Dept. 56's offerings have been joined by:
In addition, there have been a plethora of off-brand Hallowen village products, selling through places like Big Lots and Walgreens. Their quality is uneven, and their products are often only available in certain parts of the country. If you find an off-brand Halloween village figure, structure, or accessory that will add interest to your setup, go for it. We've just found it impractical to try to review these products.
Why do we list Hawthorne Village stuff first? Because, unlike many other distributors, they have taken the time to get to know us and have consistently welcomed our efforts to review and (when appropriate) promote their products. They have also consistently treated our readers with courtesy and respect: . The down side of featuring Hawthorne Village collections is that, they are often in very high demand. In fact, several Hawthorne Village Halloween collections have sold out in 2014 already. So, if you see a collection you think you would like, don't wait too long to subscribe. I have never gotten an e-mail from a reader who was dissatisfied with a Hawthorne Village product, but I've gotten plenty from folks who waited a week longer than they should have to order certain collections and want to know if we have some "extras" hidden away somewhere. (We don't.) Limited edition means "limited," after all.
That said, we also respect the quality and attractiveness of Dept. 56 products, as well as the value and originality of many Lemax products, so we will post individual pieces when we see them available through a trusted vendor.
Update, 2016 - Bradford Exchange, who distributes the Hawthorne Village products shown on this page has recently been forced by the attorney generals of several states (including Ohio where I live) to stop letting folks in Ohio and other states recommend products we like. If we keep it up, Bradford Exchange will have to start collecting sales tax for any customers in those states who order from them. So they have sent out an e-mail asking me (and hundreds of other people) to cease and desist recommending products we like.
It will take us a while to get things on these pages reconfigured to reflect the new requirements, but in the meantime, please consider the rest of this page an archive of past recommendations, for informational purposes only. We would never dream of continuing to recommend Hawthorne Village products that we liked in 2014 and still think highly of!
If you have a question about any product on this page, feel free to contact us for more information.
Note: One of the listing on this page was hacked in the early morning of August 13, and it corrupted the entire page. We are copying the listings back in a few at a time to try to isolate the "troublemaker." Thank you for your patience. - Paul Race, HalloweenTrains.com
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