We all know that Americans love Halloween. Dressing up, trick or treating and carving pumpkin Jack O’ Lanterns we instantly recognise as an American tradition. Over the last few years however, more and more Australian kids are getting into the Halloween spirit and celebrating this old tradition in a modern way.
Gone are the old meanings of Halloween, or All Hallows Eve, and now it is a time for fun and dressing up. Celebrated on October 31 each year, Halloween centres around trick or treating, although I’m sure that most kids are more interested in the treats and not the tricks, dressing up as scary characters and generally using it as a reason to have a party. Halloween is a great excuse to have a costume party that both kids and adults can participate in and just have fun with. I’m not sure that Australians have really adopted the Jack O’ Lantern pumpkin carving that the Americans love. It’s maybe because Aussies don’t get the gigantic pumpkins that the Americans do, it’s just not the same carving a scary face into a butternut, but I suspect it’s because pumpkin carving isn’t a top priority skill for most people.
Now back to the treats…while kids love collecting Halloween lollies (or candy if you’re American), there’s nothing like getting the kids full of sugar, dressing them up in scary costumes then plonking them in front of a horror DVD for an entertaining evening of screams. I reckon it’s just as much fun for the adults. For the littlies, there are also plenty of Halloween cartoon DVDs to entertain them if you don’t want to cause too many Halloween nightmares.
So while the Americans have traditionally owned Halloween celebrations, Aussies are adopting it as a fun celebration and getting into the spirit of the occasion. (Get it…spirit…a little Halloween humour there….)