OK, I know its still a way off, but Halloween comes round real fast and before you know it your rushing around trying to organize that great costume party and all the Halloween costumes for the kids with the slimmest margins for error once again. So let's start thinking about that time of the year right now, even though its still four months away!
Your kids will be wanting to get out and doing their Trick or Treat thing while you are figuring a means to manage your Halloween party for that night. You maybe were able to get all the goodies together at the last minute and the guests will be arriving real soon.
And you'll be getting out the boys costumes and the girls costumes and getting everyone ready to go out and terrorize the neighborhood in the nicest possible way. But first of all, take a breather and consider what all this is really about.
History and Origins
Without going to far down the road of explaining the historic roots of this particular spooky festival we all know and love, suffice it to say it's one of the most important events on the calendar for those who follow the Wiccan traditions. For the rest of us who are not aware of any of this, that's witches to you!
It actually goes right back to an ancient Celtic festival known as Samhain. Better known in modern times as All Hallows Eve, this is a festival marking the harvest at the end of summer and the passing into the winter months. You can find out more about the true origins of this pagan festival here: Ancient Origins of Halloween
But where did "Trick or Treat" come from?
Trick or Treat
In North America, the idea of trick or treating is something that has been a customary Halloween tradition amongst children since the early 1950s. It has also been around in other countries as well as children dressed in spooky go around their neighborhood from house to house asking for a treat of some kind with the threat of a "trick" to be played on the occupant if the "treat" was not forthcoming.
The actual tradition of going from door to door and asking (or begging) for food already existed in Great Britain and Ireland as far back as the 19th century in the form of "souling". This is a tradition where children and the poor would sing songs and say prayers in honor of the dead in return for bread or cakes.
In Scotland, the tradition of "guising" where children would be dressed in disguising costumes to go from door to door for coins. Masqueraders carrying lanterns made from hollowed out turnips would visit homes for the reward of money, fruit or cakes.
Both traditions pre-date the American Trick or Treat, fascinatingly enough.
Nowadays, the traditions are still emulated to some extent, although the treats have gotten better while the costumes have become far more elaborate, detailed and varied. While some still prefer to stick to the traditional spooky or scary outfits, others go for current super-heroes, music idols or the latest movie characters or themes.
However you enjoy yours, it's a time especially for kids to make the most of. So if they come knocking on your door, be sure to have some cool treats at the ready, because its simply much nicer to give a treat than to receive a trick!
At the end of the day, it's a fun night for everyone concerned. And since it only comes round once a year, you might as well enjoy it!
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