Halloween. It is a celebration that up until a few years ago was not overly popular in Australia. However in recent years that has changed with many people getting involved; whether it is by carving pumpkins, creating Halloween inspired foods or dressing up and taking the kids trick or treating.
Halloween originated from the Celtics who celebrated the New Year on 1st November, and they believed that the ghosts and spirits would come out the night before to haunt them. The Celtics would give them offerings of treats to appease them.
The Americans quickly took to celebrating Halloween, and it has become hugely popular in the States. There are many Halloween celebrations, balls and parties throughout the country and you will struggle to find a house in the suburbs that are not involved in handing out treats to the neighbouring children.
Halloween is slowly becoming more popular in Australia, and many people are getting on board – Have you been to your local Woolworths this week? They have a whole section dedicated to Halloween that has many costumes, makeup items and household trinkets for the celebration.
Most Australian’s have always seen Halloween as an American holiday and as such not gotten involved, there is no apparent reason why it didn’t take off here, considering historically it should have.
One of the main things that people associate with Halloween is pumpkin carving. The carving of faces into pumpkins dates back to the Celtics and them carving the faces during their Autumn celebrations.
With any great holiday, there is always great food. There are SO many treats and dishes that are now being made that have a Halloween feel to them. There are traditional dishes that include pumpkin, there are sickly sweet treats that incorporate lots of sugar and lollies, and then there are the ones that are created with a Halloween feel – gorgy fingers popping out of cakes and gravestone cookies to name a few.
Trick or Treating is one of the reasons kids love Halloween, next to dressing up in costumes of course. During the Celtic celebrations, it was custom to go to neighbouring houses and share plates of food. This is how the tradition of Trick or Treating began, and it has now turned to lollies and sugary items that are given to the door knockers.
Over the year’s allergies have become more prominent and it has worried many families when it comes to trick or treating. There have been a few great campaigns started in America such as “the Purple Pumpkin”. When you visit a house with a purple pumpkin outside it is an indicator that they are giving treats that are not food based, this helps parents for children with allergies as it means that they can still take part in the festivities without the worry of potential allergens.
If you ask a room full of Australians what their thoughts on Halloween are, you will probably end up with a split down the middle, some all for it and others against it.
Whether you are a fan or not, you can have a lot of fun on the day. You do not have to take part in the trick or treating however if you have kids it is a great chance to play dress up’s with them, play with glow sticks and create scary shadow puppets from a lamp.
For those on the fence, try a pumpkin pie – we are sure that will sway you across.
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