I try not to immerse myself in political, or social issues too often. There is too much emotion attached, and not enough information and truth being taken into consideration. Today, I’m going to make an exception to that rule. There is an issue that has been being pushed over the last several years, and this year is no exception.
This year, I have seen more of a push than ever for Halloween to be pushed to a weekend, so that celebrations can be spread out over 2 days, and no one is rushed trying to “cram everything into 2 hours.”
When I was a kid, dressing up and trick-or-treating in one night was part of the fun! Usually you had gotten dressed up for school anyway, so you were already in your costume and only had to do a little touch up. Schools (or at least teachers) would often have parties, and maybe even a festival. The only thing that was rushed (maybe) was dinner, and that was so you could get out and start trick-or-treating faster. The gathering of treats and candy lasted anywhere from two to four hours, and then you’d be back home sorting through and indulging in your treasure for days. It was also a lot more fun than another boring night of chores and homework.
But there is another, much more important reason for not changing the date. History. In culture’s worldwide, this day is “The Day of the Dead.” It’s the day to celebrate your ancestors. For Mexican’s and Central and South Americans it is known as Dia De Los Muertos. For those from and of Western European descent it was originally known as All Hallow’s Eve (among other names). For Celts and Pagan’s it is known as Samhain, and not only is it the Day of the Dead, but it is also the last day of the year. It also celebrated the last harvest and was the last major festival of the year.
All of this makes it a huge day according to cultural history and traditions. Rather than moving a few parties to a weekend, and shedding more of our history, perhaps we should consider dedicating to teaching our children about our mutual traditions and histories regarding our original festivals. Share our knowledge together, and yes, finish out the night with a traditional Trick-or-Treating!
In the meantime, enjoy the night out, stay safe, and Happy Halloween!