In New Westminster you will be able to find a variety of family friendly events for Halloween. Dubbed ‘Halloween Happenings’ this is a great event to take part in and there is a little taste of everything. Go online to see the brochure about what is going to be available through the month. Halloween Events […]Halloween Happenings: Halloween Events Going On Around New West — The BC Area
- If you drink and drive, you may spend more money on legal fees and penalties than the money you spent on many years of Halloween costumes.
- If someone is injured on your property, you could be held liable.
- If you serve alcohol at your Halloween party, you may be responsible for any accidents caused by intoxicated minors.
- If you are a business or individual with a liquor license and continue serving a visibly intoxicated person, you may be liable for any accidents they cause. https://www.edgarsnyder.com/seasonal/halloween/
Halloween Safety Tips for Homeowners
- Keep it Clear – Clear steps and lawns of any tripping hazards (electric cords, hoses, etc.).
- Pet Protection – Put any pets away. The sights and sounds of Halloween may be frightening to them too, which could lead to aggressive behavior.
- Pathways – Keep your sidewalks and pathways clearly lit.
- Store Bought – Save the homemade treats for another time.
- Party Safe – If you’re having a party, don’t provide alcohol to minors. Know the Social Host laws of Pennsylvania.
Often, the risks start with unsafe costumes. They may look amazing, but many masks obstruct field of vision. So, a child who tries to look both ways before crossing the street may still not see a car coming. A long costume poses a tripping hazard, both for its wearer and for others nearby. Also, dark costumes are less visible.
Lack of visibility
Speaking of a lack of visibility, some efforts to make children more noticeable to drivers can backfire. For example, the liquid inside glow sticks is dangerous. Children who swallow it or accidentally splash it on their face may need treatment.
Of course, the answer is not to forego visibility measures. Rather, children can carry flashlights and wear costumes with reflective tape.
When children get together, they tend to be more boisterous and active than if they were alone. Combine that with sugar, and many children are more likely to behave unpredictably on Halloween. For instance, they may dart into the street without checking that it is clear. https://www.doriangoldstein.com/articles/the-dangers-of-halloween/
Halloween Matchmaking and Lesser-Known Rituals
But what about the Halloween traditions and beliefs that today’s trick-or-treaters have forgotten all about? Many of these obsolete rituals focused on the future instead of the past and the living instead of the dead.
In particular, many had to do with helping young women identify their future husbands and reassuring them that they would someday—with luck, by next Halloween—be married. In 18th-century Ireland, a matchmaking cook might bury a ring in her mashed potatoes on Halloween night, hoping to bring true love to the diner who found it.
In Scotland, fortune-tellers recommended that an eligible young woman name a hazelnut for each of her suitors and then toss the nuts into the fireplace. The nut that burned to ashes rather than popping or exploding, the story went, represented the girl’s future husband. (In some versions of this legend, the opposite was true: The nut that burned away symbolized a love that would not last.)
Another tale had it that if a young woman ate a sugary concoction made out of walnuts, hazelnuts and nutmeg before bed on Halloween night she would dream about her future husband.
Young women tossed apple-peels over their shoulders, hoping that the peels would fall on the floor in the shape of their future husbands’ initials; tried to learn about their futures by peering at egg yolks floating in a bowl of water and stood in front of mirrors in darkened rooms, holding candles and looking over their shoulders for their husbands’ faces.
Other rituals were more competitive. At some Halloween parties, the first guest to find a burr on a chestnut-hunt would be the first to marry. At others, the first successful apple-bobber would be the first down the aisle.
Of course, whether we’re asking for romantic advice or trying to avoid seven years of bad luck, each one of these Halloween superstitions relies on the goodwill of the very same “spirits” whose presence the early Celts felt so keenly.
All Souls Day and Soul Cakes
The American Halloween tradition of trick-or-treating probably dates back to the early All Souls’ Day parades in England. During the festivities, poor citizens would beg for food and families would give them pastries called “soul cakes” in return for their promise to pray for the family’s dead relatives.
The distribution of soul cakes was encouraged by the church as a way to replace the ancient practice of leaving food and wine for roaming spirits. The practice, which was referred to as “going a-souling,” was eventually taken up by children who would visit the houses in their neighborhood and be given ale, food and money.
The tradition of dressing in costume for Halloween has both European and Celtic roots. Hundreds of years ago, winter was an uncertain and frightening time. Food supplies often ran low and, for the many people afraid of the dark, the short days of winter were full of constant worry.
On Halloween, when it was believed that ghosts came back to the earthly world, people thought that they would encounter ghosts if they left their homes. To avoid being recognized by these ghosts, people would wear masks when they left their homes after dark so that the ghosts would mistake them for fellow spirits. https://www.history.com/topics/halloween/history-of-halloween#section_13
Me? I stay at home and watch TV while eating popcorn. My favorite show to watch every Halloween is Dead Like Me – Haunted. https://halloween.fandom.com/wiki/Dead_Like_Me:_Haunted It is Halloween and the reaper legend has it that the reapers can be seen as they were when alive. A serial killer stalks a neighborhood, the reapers collecting his victims as he goes, George gets the bad guy and Joy and Reggie pay a late night visit to George’s grave.
The character of the Grim Reaper originated in medieval Europe. Images of him date back to at least the 15th century. He is one of the many different personifications of Death that at various times have featured in the folklores and mythologies of various different cultures.
The Grim Reaper is usually depicted as a skeleton, sometimes as a tall, pale, thin skeletal-looking person. Medieval depictions of the Grim Reaper often show a naked skeleton. Modern images usually show him wearing a cloak with a hood, usually either brown or black, which covers his body entirely or leaves only his face and hands visible. The Grim Reaper gets his name from the scythe which he carries, symbolic of cutting short people’s lives and harvesting their souls.
KHARON (Charon) was the Ferryman of the Dead, an underworld daimon (spirit) in the service of King Haides. Hermes Psykhopompos (Guide of the Dead) gathered the shades of the dead from the upper world and led them down to the shores of the Akherousian (Acherusian) mere in the underworld where Kharon transported them across the waters to Haides in his skiff. His fee was a single obolos coin which was placed in the mouth of a corpse upon burial. Those who had not received proper burial were unable to pay the fee and were left to wander the earthly side of the Akheron (Acheron), haunting the world as ghosts.
Kharon was depicted in ancient Greek art as an ugly, bearded man with a crooked nose, wearing a conical hat and tunic. He was shown standing in his skiff holding a pole, about to receive a shade from Hermes Psykhopompos (Psychopomp).
The Etruscans of central Italy identified him with one of their own underworld daimones who was named Charun after the Greek figure. He was depicted as a more repulsive creature with blue-grey skin, a tusked mouth, hooked nose and sometimes serpent-draped arms. His attribute was a large, double-headed mallet.
Image right Perseus Project, July 2000 : “Charon, the ferryman, prepares to ferry a soul across the Acheron to Hades. He wears a red tunic (exomis) and conical hat (pilos). In one hand he holds an oar, and with the other he steadies himself on the stern of his boat. On the right is his passenger, a woman wearing a black chiton. Between the two figures are the tall reeds of the river.” Kharon is real, this I know for SURE. https://www.theoi.com/Khthonios/Kharon.html
Euripides, Alcestic 439 ff :
“Chorus : The old man [Kharon], whos sits at the steering oar and ferries the dead, know that you [Alkestis] are the bravest of wives, by far, ever conveyed across the tarn of Akheron (Acheron) in the rowboat.”
The data on Halloween and all the ghouls, goblins, witches, warlocks, etc… is too great to all be mentioned in this blog post! For 8 hallowed stories click here: https://www.history.com/news/halloween-folk-legends and
And…oh yes! For your pleasure: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=31-W85zZrac
Happy Halloween to All and to ALL a safe and sound evening!