Halloween, time for costumes and candy
Oct. 21, 2013
by Jenni Sebora

Halloween has become the third-biggest party day of the year, behind New Year’s and the Super Bowl.

It seems the mystery, weather, and, of course, the tricks and treats may be the biggest reason behind its popularity; not to mention its main purpose of transforming into some ghoul, ghost, monster, royalty, celebrity, or whatever our creativity can come up with.

In fact, close to 90 percent of Americans decorate their homes for Halloween.

This year, my youngest daughter, who is 9 years old, wants to dress as a hot dog or Harry Potter – two ends of the spectrum.

My middle daughter is 13, and still enjoys dressing up with her friends. Last year, she and a friend transformed into babies. The only purchase we had to make was pacifiers.

They wore their footie pajamas, put their hair in messy pony tails, held blankies, and sucked on their “nuks.” This quieted them – at least for a little while. My daughter is tall and certainly not quiet, so this was a true costume.

Trick-or-treating and the costuming tradition largely developed from parades that occurred in England.

The poor would beg from door-to-door for food or money in exchange for praying for souls to be delivered to purgatory. Eventually, though, children took over the tradition. In the US, it did not become popular until the 1940s.

Communities encouraged trick-or-treating as a safe and healthy way to spend Halloween, versus vandalism and other such not-so-good tricks.

Halloween celebration has become a true tradition for many families, including mine. We look forward to it each year. We head to my brother’s house, where we meet other ghoulie characters for fun treats, including apple cider, hot cocoa, and all the fixins.’

After we fill our bellies with some delectable but diabolical treats, we cozy up on the hay wagon to be transported around our little town for tricks, treats, chants, and just plain fun and camaraderie.

When the trick-or-treating is all over, the kids pile in the house, dump their bags, which cover a majority of the floor, and “ooh” and “ah” over all the sugar and chocolate they have been dreaming of since last Halloween.

Of all the candy sold yearly, one-fourth of it is sold at Halloween. That’s a lot of Halloween candy. Candy bars – chocolate that is – are the most popular candy for our trick-or-treaters. Snickers are number-one, followed by Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups.

A Halloween treat bag would not be complete without candy corn. My favorite way to enjoy it is mixed with peanuts.

Candy corn was invented in the early 1800s. The Goelitz Confectionary Company began making candy corn in 1898, too. Today, the company is known as Jelly Belly.

What is a mummy’s favorite kind of music? Wrap. Of course.

Happy harvesting and happy Halloween!

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