On the last day of October it is normal to see children walking around in funny or scary costumes, knocking their neighbor’s doors and shouting “Trick of Treat!” Ghosts, witches, princesses and superheroes walk all among us and they all carry a bag full of candy that has been given to them by their neighbors. I know this all sounds fairly familiar to you because of movies, tv shows, etc. But this American tradition is not so American!
The history of Halloween
Believe it or not, this American tradition known as Halloween originated as a pagan festival in parts of the United Kingdom. For many at that time, the end of October was believed to be a magical day and night, where spirits had the highest chance to make contact with the physical world (how creepy does that sound?!).
How was it brought to the US
Just like anything else, it’s all about the money! In the 1900’s Irish and Scottish immigrants brought this tradition to the United States and started commercializing it. So it all started: costumes, postcards, decorations, you name it!
How is it celebrated now - Kids and Adults
Halloween is still going strong. Families and young adults start preparing for this tradition as soon as October starts. Stores stock up on candy, pumpkins, decorations and anything else you can associate with Halloween.
Of course, families like to purchase decorations to decor their front and back yards. The parents start brainstorming cute/scary costumes for their children. And moms start searching for those perfect Halloween decorations. Once October 31st hits the calendar, it’s game time! As soon as it’s dark, the little monsters, princesses, ghosts go out, knock on their neighbor’s doors and shout “Trick or Treat!” As they collect as much candy as possible, time goes by and finally retreat back to their homes. Once they reach their home, these little monsters, princesses and ghosts hit the sack and sleep the night away.
Now for those young, single men and women, it’s a whole different story. No more knocking on neighbor’s doors and shouting “Trick or Treat”. It is time for good parties and plenty of drinking.
As bars and restaurants have also commercialized on this tradition. They have introduced parties, halloween-inspired food and drinks and plenty of young adults love to check them out. For those who decide to “stay at home,” it’s not for the sake of staying at home but rather to throw epic costumes parties! Naturally, all the invitees must be dressed up. The more innovative the costumer, the better!
In your country, do you celebrate Halloween?