Denise Ryles, co-owner of The Costume Box, holds up one of the many options available in the Eureka store on Thursday. (Shaun Walker — The Times-Standard)
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Reboots are dominating the movie theaters, throwback culture has peppered recent fashion trends — nostalgia is clearly the current American flavor. So it’s a fitting time to play dress-up.

This year, “old school” is the winning Halloween formula among all ages in Humboldt County, where locals are reaching for past cultural icons like Dolly Parton, Lucille Ball, Mae West and Lana Turner for their costume of choice.

“There’s a lot of glamor in the old stuff this year,” said Denise Ryles of The Costume Box in Eureka. “People are looking for costumes with a lot of personality to them.”

Even the younger crowd is leaning toward fictional characters from the 1990s or medieval influences, Ryles said. Renaissance-era clothing is another big theme among the twenty-somethings, she added.

When local millennials do draw from more recent influences, they reach for period films, like last December’s musical “The Greatest Showman.”

Last year’s costume choices were highlighted by Pennywise the Dancing Clown from 2017’s “It,” an adaptation of the Stephen King classic.

But this year, young children are investing in Michael Myers, the “Halloween” film franchise’s star killer and one of Hollywood’s most iconic slasher creations. As the eleventh installment in the series dominates the box office, costumes of the iconic antagonist have been a big draw at local stores like Party City, said store representative Alisha Marie.

Children are also choosing to play police, as cop costumes have been big-sellers. As usual, kids are looking to be superheroes, animals and dinosaurs as well, Marie said.

Lumberjacks are a favorite among locals. Ryles said multiple shoppers have wanted to assemble a “forest logger witch” costume. The outfit’s starter pack? A plaid shirt, denim skirt and logger socks.

“We’re seeing a very retro Halloween this year,” Ryles said.

Shomik Mukherjee can be reached at 707-441-0504.

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