Monday, October 31, 2016

Halloween: Trick? Or treat?

"Halloween-graveyard" by Johnny Martin ecdl is licensed under CC BY-SA 3.0

Trick or treat, smell my feet
Give me something good to eat...

     Have you ever sung this little jingle before? If so, you've probably been out "trick or treating" on Halloween night! Sometimes called "all hallows eve,” Halloween is celebrated on October 31st in the United States and the United Kingdom. While there are fun festivities to celebrate, this day has historically been set aside for people to remember and honor the dead. The holiday is celebrated in many countries, at different times of the year, and with different names, such as the Ching Ming Festival in China, the Obon Festival in Japan, and El Dia de Los Muertos (Day of the Dead) in Mexico.1 One of the ways people today celebrate is through dressing up! 

     On this day, many children dress up in costumes - spooky, silly, or cute - and go around their neighborhoods, knocking door to door, saying "Trick or Treat" to receive candy. "Trick or treat!' is meant as a mild threat, meaning a trick might be played on those who do not give treats. Few children play pranks on their neighbors, however, and the majority of adults look forward to handing out candy to children on Halloween"2  But Halloween isn't just celebrated by children. Adults also love to dress up and go to parties too! Last year, 64% of American adults planned to celebrate Halloween, 44% planned to dress up in costumes, and 41% planned to carve a pumpkin. And in 2015 alone, adults in the US spent 1.2 billion dollars on costumes.3 It's estimated that 4.8 billion dollars will be spent purchasing Halloween candy this year!4 It's safe to say this is a well-loved holiday in America, as it offers people a chance to dress up and have fun!

     If going out on Halloween isn't for you, consider taking a break from studying to watch one of many popular DVDs the Holman Library has for you to watch at home!

Try one of these spooky titles...

No matter how you spend the day, have fun & be safe! 

1."Halloween and Festivals of the Dead." Junior Worldmark Encyclopedia of World Holidays, edited by Robert H. Griffin and Ann H. Shurgin, vol. 2, Detroit, 2000, pp. 195-209. Gale Virtual Reference Library. 
2. Ibid
3.Sobic, Aleksandra. "Creepy Calculations: 2015 Halloween Statistics." Halloween Costumes Blog,, 26 Oct. 2015, p-870-creepy-calculations-2015-halloween-statistics-infographic.aspx. Accessed 25 Oct. 2016. 
4. "Halloween Spending To Reach $8.4 Billion, Highest In Survey History." National Retail Federation, 2016, Accessed 25 Oct. 2016. 

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