What Will You Do This Halloween Night?

Have you ever had to explain Halloween to someone who's never experienced the holiday?

I found myself struggling to do so in high school when our family had a foreign exchange student living with us. The more I tried to describe, the more I realized how crazy I sounded.

Despite our society's admonitions to kids to "never take candy from strangers," and "beware of stranger danger," on one night a year we unilaterally abandoned those rules and instead donned our carefully crafted costumes and wandered neighborhoods in the dark asking people we've never met, for candy.

That was years ago, but this year I found myself again struggling to understand Halloween and wanting to understand the origins of our Halloween traditions as I shopped for my part of our family costume (pictures will be posted on the Root Story Studios Facebook page and Instagram later - stay tuned!).

So, before you check your Nextdoor app and plan your trick-or-treating route (see the link below), here's a collection of some interesting facts about our spooky and sugar driven holiday:

1. Halloweens origins are largely Celtic

Aye! Ye wee lads and lasses' - trick or treatin' comes from the lands of the Celts!

According to, the Celts believed the souls of the dead were able to return and cause commotion before the New Year and the advent of winter on November 1. The presence of these sprits also meant religious leaders in the community could make prophecies heading into the cold season.

"To commemorate the event, Druids built huge sacred bonfires, where the people gathered to burn crops and animals as sacrifices to the Celtic deities.During the celebration, the Celts wore costumes, typically consisting of animal heads and skins, and attempted to tell each other’s fortunes." -

Read more in the link below:

2. The tradition of bobbing for apples used to be a game for fortune telling

Don't worry about waiting for another wedding to try and catch the bouquet. You may be able to secure your wedded future at a Halloween party tonight.

According to Live Science, the Halloween tradition of bobbing for apples comes from as far back as Colonial times. According to legend, the first lucky person to retrieve an apple would be the first to marry. They were also the first person to get out continuously plunging their face into that unsanitary little bucket.

Read more in the link below:

3. American haunted houses were started as a way to stop more destructive "tricks" on Halloween night

Back in the 1930's, there was a little more "teeth" attached to the phrase "trick or treat!" According to Popular Mechanics, neighbors could easily wake up to vandalism or a destroyed mailbox the next morning. But, some smart parents put a stop to that and sparked a classic Halloween tradition.

"In true DIY manner, parents would build these so-called "trails of terror" in their basements using props like strips of raw liver, wet sponges, and old hairnets." - Popular Mechanics

Now, haunted house attractions rake in hundreds of millions of dollars each year, according to the Haunted House Association.

Read more in the link below:

Halloween traditions have come far since their early beginnings. New traditions are being created all the time! What are some traditions you remember or are doing in your own celebrations?


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Sydney Decker

Georgetown, Texas


Tel: (512) 686 - 6945