For a last-minute Halloween costume in Fort Collins, try a thrift store

Caroline Kozak

In Fort Collins, thrift stores are prevalent — just drive down College Avenue through Old Town to see several trendy thrift stores, overflowing with donated clothes, furniture and more. And, during the Halloween season, many Colorado State University students turn to thrift stores to find their costumes. 

“I like to shop at thrift stores for a Halloween costume because spending full price on a costume I may only wear once or twice seems ridiculous,” said Summer Myrick, a freshmen business student. “I also try to conjure up things I already own, so that I don’t have to spend as much at the store.” 


Haloween costume ideas are set up for customers at the Brand Spanking Used Thrift Store. (Photo credit: Ryan Arb.)
Haloween costume ideas are set up for customers at the Brand Spanking Used Thrift Store. (Photo credit: Ryan Arb.)

It is not surprising that college students on a budget would prefer to frequent thrift stores for their various Halloween or costume party ensembles.

Some thrift stores, like ThriftRite, become even busier during the Halloween season.

“We see a steady increase in sales for Halloween-related items starting as early as Labor Day,” said Matt, the ThriftRite store manager. “The store gets really crazy the week before Halloween because costume stores will start to run out of inventory.”

ThriftRite receives the most donations for Halloween costumes the week after Halloween, so the store boxes up the items up and saves them for the next year’s Halloween season.

“Our vintage section is also a great place to find Halloween costumes,” Matt said. 

Other students shop for costumes at thrift stores as a way to recycle, save money or support local business.

  • “Thrift stores are a great place to find Halloween costumes because you get a costume at a discount, but you also have the chance to support local businesses,” said Lydia McGugan, a sophomore health and human sciences student.
  • “When I’m done with my costumes, I give them to my friends, or donate them to the thrift store,” said Chase Dudley, a freshman business student.
  • “Depending on where I go, I tend to spend no more than 30 dollars,” said Kevin Abeyta, a sophomore animal sciences student. “This year, I am reusing the costume I wore last year to save money.”

Collegian Reporter Caroline Kozak can be reached online at or on Twitter at @caroline_00.