Raspberry Pi projects for Halloween 2015

It’s Halloween this Saturday, and people have been showing off their spooky Raspberry Pi projects as they prepare to startle the heck out of friends, neighbours and fellow party-goers. We thought we’d share a few of our favourites so far. We’ve also got some great suggestions for you if you don’t yet have a petrifying project planned!

Anyone visiting David Pride‘s house on Saturday will at least get a warning, laden with menace, before this horrible pumpkin comes to cackling, glaring life:

Robert Wiltshire is involved with the Code Club at Perranporth School in Cornwall, where children prepared this ghastly creation for their Halloween Disco:

Spooky Halloween skull by Perranporth Code Club

A teacher at Nicholas Chamberlaine School, a secondary school in Warwickshire, showed off a Minecraft pumpkin with flashing features. It’s sweet rather than scary, but still superb.


Of course, the October 2015 issue of The MagPi magazine is full of Pi-powered ideas for scaring your friends. Mike’s Pi Bakery this month brings you a tutorial for Mulder, a glowing, moving skull, and Mike has kindly prepared a video of this incredibly creepy build.

If it’s more ideas than instructions you’re after, look in the Features pages for a haunting selection of Halloween projects. For spine-tingling sound effects, you could give the ultrasonic theremin a go.

Our free online resources include plenty of beginner-friendly projects, and some that mightn’t seem particularly timely can easily be adapted to suit the season. Our Santa Detector resource, for example, shows you how to use a low-cost infra-red sensor with a Scratch program to catch Santa delivering your presents and sound an alarm, but you could install it in your porch to startle trick-or-treaters with scary sounds when they approach your door. And instead of using our Spinning Flower Wheel worksheet to make a summery garden with flowers and bees, you could choose spiders, ghouls, bats and beasties.

Spooky pipe-cleaner bugs and beasties

Spinning flower wheel? Try spinning bugs and beasties | Photo by Wendy Piersall / CC BY 2.0

Lighting up a pumpkin lantern (or, if you’re having trouble getting hold of a pumpkin, a swede or turnip) must be one of the quickest, simplest Halloween Raspberry Pi projects. Fourteen-year-old Yasmin Bey has just published an excellent, short, tutorial explaining how to control an LED connected to your Pi’s GPIO pins; apart from your Raspberry Pi, you just need an LED, a breadboard, a resistor and a couple of jumper leads. It’s an ideal project for beginners. Yasmin’s code for controlling the LED is only a few lines long, and uses GPIO Zero, a new Python library designed by Raspberry Pi’s Ben Nuttall to make it as easy as possible for beginners to get started with controlling things connected to the GPIO pins.

LED-lit pumpkin

LED-lit pumpkin | From a photo by Shannon Ramos / CC BY-SA 2.0

Most UK schools have their half-term holiday this week, and Yasmin is taking advantage of this to work on a Pi-powered haunted house. She’s only just starting her build, but she gave us a sneak peek of her preparations, after she returned from buying “everything in the Halloween section of Poundland”. We’re looking forward to seeing more of her project on Twitter this week.

An appropriately headless Yasmin Bey with the raw ingredients of her Halloween project; we expect the Pi will end up headless as well

An appropriately headless Yasmin Bey with some of the raw ingredients of her Halloween project; we expect the Pi will end up headless as well

What are you planning for your Raspberry Pi this 31 October? Link to your projects in the comments or tweet @Raspberry_Pi – we’ll be sharing our favourites!


Jim Manley avatar

To quote the inimitable Count Floyd from “Second City TV”, “Reeeealllly scaree keeds!” :D

Very in-spirit-ational everyone! Please stop by my door for your special treat … where is my door? Ah, that’s the trick! ;)

Quantum_Star avatar

Here is a code I modified for the PiGlow :) I changed around a code I found on GitHub so it will work with the version of the PiGlow module from this site. Let me know if it doesn’t work for some reason :p

# Original code by TommyBobbins, fixed by QuantumStar (Quantum_Star from HackerRank).
from PyGlow import PyGlow
from time import sleep
import random

# Maximum random sleep between switching an LED on or off
sleep_period = 0.001

pyglow = PyGlow()
# Switch off all the lights first

# We only want to select the Red, Orange and Yellow LEDs (roy)
roy_leds = [ “01”,”02″,”03″, “07”, “08”, “09”, “13”,”14″, “15” ]

def random_brightness():
return random.randint(0,255)

while True:
pyglow.color(“red”, (random_brightness()))
# Switch one random roy LED to one random brightness
led_to_switch = int(random.choice(roy_leds))
pyglow.led(led_to_switch, random_brightness())
# Switch one random roy LED off
led_to_switch = int(random.choice(roy_leds))
pyglow.led(led_to_switch, 0)

Andrew Oakley avatar

Belatedly, my effort – a 12×8 WS2811 addressable LED matrix. They’re selling strings of 50 of these addressable colour LEDs for twelve quid on Amazon!


Making of: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hYF-nyFaNNM

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