Bruce Horovitz, USA TODAY
Halloween, the night when kids rake-in gobs of free candy, is evolving into an occasion when parents also can walk-off with something equally enticing: free meals for the kids.
A growing parade of restaurant chains - from Olive Garden to IHop to Krispy Kreme - will offer free eats around Halloween in order to lure traffic during a seriously slow time.
Halloween evening is a time when most families eat at home. While Halloween is one of the pizza delivery industry's biggest days of the year, it's an evening when many casual dining restaurants are scraping for business.
"Restaurants are like ghost towns on Halloween," says Derek Farley, a restaurant industry PR guru. Much like Labor Day and July 4th, Halloween is a holiday that's not very restaurant-friendly, he says.