Remember, remember, Bonfire Night celebrations don’t always have to go off with a bang. There are lots of ways to have fun on the 5th of November without letting off noisy fireworks (which can cause distress to small children, pets* and wildlife).
Here are five ways to have a quieter Bonfire Night this year.
Nothing takes the chill off the November night air quite like toasted marshmallows. If you have a fire pit, you can toast them outdoors. If not, put them under the grill in the kitchen – they’ll still taste delicious. Another option is to try the American campfire classic S’mores. Sandwich marshmallows and chocolate buttons between sweet biscuits and toast gently.
Take six plastic bottles from your recycling and fill them with water. Then, activate six glowsticks and add one to each bottle. Tightly fasten the lid on each bottle, grab a ball, and you’re good to go. Dim the lights or head to the garden for a game of glow-in-the-dark skittles.
It doesn’t matter how old you are, there’s something magical about waving a sparkler in the air and making shapes or writing your name. (Although, always wear gloves and have a bucket of water nearby, just in case.) If you’re a keen photographer, capture these moments on your phone (there are plenty of tips online on how to take great sparkler photos) and share them with family and friends.
Wrap up warm and head outside to gaze at the November night sky. If you’re lucky, you might be able to spot the constellation Orion or a star cluster like Seven Sisters. Download a stargazing app beforehand to help you identify what you’re looking at.
Raise a toast
A hot drink is just the thing to warm your cockles if you’re spending time outdoors. Adults who enjoy an alcoholic tipple could try hot buttered rum (a silky mix of brown sugar, rum, butter, cinnamon and nutmeg).
Or the whole family could enjoy an indulgent hot chocolate. Tailor your hot chocolate to your tastes by adding ingredients such as ground cinnamon (for added warmth and spice) or raspberry-flavoured syrup (for fruity sweetness). And if you’ve already had your fill of marshmallows, you could add whipped cream and sprinkles for a colourful finishing touch.
* If you have a pet, the animal welfare charity Blue Cross has plenty of tips to help keep your pets calm on Bonfire Night.