Candy quiz: Atlanta is No. 15 for best trick or treating but why?

A study released Monday by names Atlanta as the No. 15 best city for trick or treating. It’s the only city in the Southeast to make the list. Their study is based on boring stuff like home value index, population density, a “walk score” and local crime data. But I thought it would be fun to get down to the Halloween nitty-gritty and  find out how your family celebrates the holiday. So I have all kinds of candy questions for you (I give my answers after each question):

1. Are you known as a “good” candy giver on your street? (I usually buy only name-brand chocolate candy. I will supplement toward the end with suckers.)

2.  Will you be buying actual chocolate candy (good candy) this year or will the recession force you into the no-name mix bags of questionable fare? (I will be buying the cheapest candy I can find.)

3. Do your worry about allergies when buying Halloween candy? (That never even occurred to me until I saw a news story about it.)

4.  Are you the type of house that tries to scare the kids when they come to the door? (Ie jumping out, pretending to be a dummy, scary music, scary decorations, answering the door in masks? This is my brother. He loves to scare the kids! I won’t go to his house!)

5. What candy can you not keep your hands off of? (Almond Joys and Mounds (because sometimes you feel like a nut and sometimes you don’t) will be stolen from all my children and become my own special supply.)

6. Do you steal from your kids’ bucket or just eat what’s left over from your own house’s candy? (See my answer above. I absolutely raid their candy – there’s plenty. I do try to leave the things they like best.)

7. Do the kids know you are taking the candy or are your really stealing? (They know.)

8. Do you hide the majority of the candy after the first night so they don’t make themselves sick? (I hide a lot of it! I also put it up very high where they cannot help themselves to it.)

9. Will you dress up with your kids? (I have been wearing that Cinderella dress for last 7 years, and it will make another appearance this year! When Lilina is older I will eventually have to get a new outfit, but for now the princesses still thrill her.)

10. Will you buy your kids’ costumes or make them? How much say do they get in who they dress up as? (Lilina wanted to be Ariel and got a new costume from the Target (Although I did try to borrow the Ariel costume from her Godmother but she gave it away.) The other two kids have been told to either re-wear something from years past or create something new from stuff we have. They are seemingly on board with this plan.)

11. Do you leave your house dark to take the kids around or do you leave one parent at home and one parent walking around with the kids? (Michael will stay home and answer the door while I take the kids around. I like talking to the neighbors. Sometimes we’ll leave a bowl on the stoop in Michael wants to come along with us.)

Do you think Atlanta is a great city for trick or treating? What’s your favorite part of Halloween? If you don’t celebrate it, how do you let people know not to come to your house?

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October 19th, 2010
5:41 am

I do not celebrate which drives my family nuts. If my husband decides to take them out, his choice. I put a sign on my door that says “no candy” and leave it at that. My outside lights are on because it is dark outside and I want the front of my house seen from the street. To be fair, our street is not in a traditional development. There is no large sign out front, the homes are small to modest older homes and you would have to be looking for our block in order to not drive past it. We get very little foot traffic. Even with my sign, people still knock on my door which means children not old enough to read are walking up to my door unescorted (!).

Hey, smh -...

October 19th, 2010
7:29 am

…way to get in the “Christmas spirit” early – bah, humbug to you and yours…


October 19th, 2010
7:33 am

Well…maybe this topic will draw more interest than the past two yesterday…I felt like chopped liver yesterday….guess my blog suggestion ( for the anniversary) was not something that would be interesting but not many others shared anything they actually remembered either. Some folks were angry at T. I was just frustrated.

I usually buy chocolate but then we tend to eat it, before Halloween. So far, I have purchased tootsie roll pops ( 100 large sized) and Swedish Fish. ( 50) I do not care for either of these but my daughter tells me the kids like them….hmmm. I think I need at least 50 more pieces and may go with chocolate. I have a big bowl and let them pick one treat they like…not everyone likes the same things. i have been asking the kids what they like and REALLY not many say chocolate candy bars…I am working with 2-6 year olds. Lots say candy corn…which I do not like. M&M’s are popular and YES those are chocolate.

I love Halloween and have had a lot of fun with my stories, the past few weeks. We put up orange lights and garland on our front porch plus my husband went and got 2 pumpkins. FYI…he and some friends went to pick up pumpkins after work at a farmer’s market. He came home without one and asked, ” Is $36 a good price for a pumpkin?” WHAT? I told him that I thought you could usually get the size he showed me for $10 or less. Yep, he actually got 2 for $5 on Saturday at ALDI. I do not shop there but he made a great choice to stop in! Maybe I need to shop there.

We have lots of kids trick or treating in our neighborhood….many who do not live here. My pet peeve is the parents who drive down the street and follow the kids in the car ( thus they do not come to the door smh) , while the others are zig zagging across the street. I fear someone will get hit and since I sit outside…the lights are blinding. HELLO if you are coming to get free candy from us…can you please walk with your kids so that our kids will be safe too? Park your car up at the pool…it is fine.

Parents…fyi…it is so thoughtful, to me, when the kids actually say thank you….you are teaching good manners!

I like to sit outside and visit with the kids and usually spend 3 hours out there. I have been out under our beach umbrella when it is raining….my DH set it up!

Van Jones

October 19th, 2010
7:53 am

I remember how exciting Halloween used to be for me (35 yrs ago) and how REALLY excited I was when we were surprised at a house by either a bigger bag of candy or a full size candy bar. I like to get that reaction out of our trick-or-treaters.


October 19th, 2010
8:00 am

@ Van re: years ago…I remember when some houses gave out BIG boxes of cracker jack! Some of our neighbors grill hamburgers and pass them out to the adults…not sure for this year!

I can understand those who do not celebrate but those who do not pass out candy but let their kids get it elsewhere….not getting it here.


October 19th, 2010
8:11 am

Our house is totally decked out with all the Spooky stuff; props, lights, smoke machine and lots and lots of monsters. We’re over generous with the candy and give the kids the name brand. We give out beer to the father’s who are walking around too! I also see too many Mommies and Daddies who eat up all their Halloween candy mid month, then buy more and continue to eat it. It’s amazing to watch these parents gut expand by the day.


October 19th, 2010
8:14 am

I have never passed out candy, because I was always out with the kids. There aren’t a lot of kids in my neighborhood, so I just turn off the lights outside, and watch tv. I do LOVE to carve pumpkins and I do about 3 and light them up. I also do spider webs at the front door, and decorate with witches, ghosts, pumpkins, etc…

Candy corn is the one candy I cannot keep my hands off. I love that stuff and will eat it till I puke….


October 19th, 2010
8:15 am

I love Halloween, but our neighborhood is small and just about everyone is Baptist and they are all at church functions that night. Lame! The first year we were in our neighborhood we got the kids dressed and not one light was on.

So, now we go to a friend’s neighborhood and bring a bunch of name-brand chocolate candy (so we are not moochers) and take turns walking the kids around. It is a blast! Their active neighborhood reminds me of my neighborhood as a kid, where everyone decorated their houses and the dads walked the kids while the moms stayed at home and passed out candy. I do not dress up myself. It’s hard enough getting the kids ready and I’m not really into that anyway. We make the kids go up the driveway, not cut across the yards, just like when I was a kid. They have to say thank you!! People who drive their kid around make me crazy, just like motherjanegoose said. It’s rude, dangerous and cheating! Walk for your candy, spoiled-rotten child!

I guilt my kids into giving me my favorites out of their candy. If they don’t hand it over willingly I end up stealing it when they are at school anyway.

I really don’t want to spend a bunch of money on costumes this year, so we haven’t figured that out yet.


October 19th, 2010
8:31 am

I eat my kids’ candy- gotta make sure it’s not poison. I do it because I love them.


October 19th, 2010
8:33 am

I love Halloween and it has always been my favorite holiday. We generally get together with friends and have a bite of pizza and take pictures before we head out as a group to go around. Everyone dresses up, including the parents and grandparents (we all have young kids, most under 5) and we tend to get creative.

Since I sew, I tend to make most if not all costumes we wear (yes, this will haunt me during pagents and plays when the kids get older). My little one is going to be Ariel and has been wearing it around the house. Now she wants me to make her a Cinderella dress and she doesn’t want a store dress at all.

As for candy, I am always trying to think of what kids will eat or will be allowed to eat. I will say that one year I did give out toothbrushes. That one went over great with the parents, but not the kids. Maybe I’ll give out floss this year. Ha ha Just kidding. I always buy what we like just in case we have leftovers.


October 19th, 2010
8:39 am

Not getting this…JJ…you never passed out candy because you were out with the kids. Now, you sit home with the lights out? Can someone please explain this?

WHO should provide the candy then? We have not had little kids for years but always give out candy. Maybe I am in the minority?

Even when we were out with our kids…we put a bowl on the porch with a sign…”there is plenty of candy in here if everyone takes 2 pieces…if it is empty when you arrive, some kids were greedy…sorry!” I know the little kids cannot read it but we tried to do our part!

BGB…is it really a shame that the Baptists, or anyone other church, provides trunk or treat or even a carnival for anyone to attend? Not sure if that is a negative thing. If you mean they are at church…that does not seem right since Halloween is a different day each year. Maybe I need more coffee but today’s posts are confusing me!


October 19th, 2010
8:43 am

I have said before that this is my least favorite holiday. I did however decorate the family room in the finished basement for the holiday…the kids love it.

They have been busy making decorations for my car…yeah my car. Our church will do it’s trunk or treat this weekend…TOO EARLY…I know. Nobody asked our opinion (Sat 10/30 got my vote). We will also do the trunk or treat at our sister church (it is on Sat 10/30).

I do not know how much folks in our new area get into the holiday. Thus far we have one neighbor who decorates….they put a bunch of cobwebs and tombstones in the yard. They got first place in the decorating contest…good for them.

As to the candy….I only buy the good stuff. I do not do the full size bars…most of the candy my kids get either gets tossed out (around Christmas) or goes to the office for adults to eat. This is the primary reason I find it hard to get into the holiday. The kids don’t NEED the candy…They shouldn’t eat the candy….There is just no real reason for this other than fun, which is why I let them do the trunk or treat.

Halloween Trick or Treat History: The practice of dressing up in costumes and begging door to door for treats on holidays dates back to the Middle Ages and includes Christmas wassailing. Trick-or-treating resembles the late medieval practice of souling, when poor folk would go door to door on Hallowmas (November 1), receiving food in return for prayers for the dead on All Souls Day (November 2). It originated in Ireland and Britain,[1] although similar practices for the souls of the dead were found as far south as Italy. It was then brought by the Irish and Scottish immigrants to the US in the 19th century…at the time of this “import” the custom was “guising” or dressing up to do the song/prayer trades. Although T or T can date to the 1920s it did not take its current “root” in Americana until after WWII. In fact in the 30’s -50’s many adults saw T or T as nothing more than extoration.

Ok so again why do we find it fun to do the T or T? I get the parties for Halloween…I am all for them. Costumes balls have around for centuries as well. I just do not get T or T.

Day of the Dead gives us the candy angle. In this Mexican tradition food alters and sweets are placed for the dead to feast.

Somehow the above combined to be what we do for trick or treating.


October 19th, 2010
8:43 am

I love Halloween- no stress over buying people gifts and worrying about what my MIL will say at dinner; just the fun of dressing up and seeing what kids are into each year. I need to get on the ball and decorate though- we’ve been so crazy busy I haven’t had a chance to even think about it. I do have a couple of pumpkins on the porch but fully expect with this warm weather that they’ll be rotted by Halloween.

Our new neighborhood is pretty small so we’ve actually gone back to our old ‘hood the last couple of years but this year I think we’re staying put. Our church does a Trunk-N-Treat deal on Halloween and it bugs me (especially this year when they could do it on a Saturday). How do you build a sense of community when no one is home??!! I’ll donate a couple of bags of candy to it but I’m not volunteering for it.

In past years we’ve left the porch light on and a note to take 3 pieces of candy and to be ‘nice’ and leave some treats for other people. I’ve come home to leftovers so luckily kids & their parents are being honest. When the boy was younger my husband would usually hand out candy and I would walk with our son and our friends.

The boy is older now and some people may not like it but my theory is that as long as you are in the spirit and dressing up, you can go Trick-or-Treating. I will give candy out to any teenager who shows up at my door as long as they’ve put some effort into dressing up. But don’t show up at my house in regular clothes and a pillow case- uh bye,bye.


October 19th, 2010
8:48 am

MJG – what is there to explain? I’m a single parent so I was always out with my child and our friends. Now in my current neighborhood we don’t have a lot of little kids, so it’s not worth it to me to go buy a big bag of candy for two kids who may or may not ring my bell (I don’t eat a lot of candy so I don’t want it in my house). Plus it drives my dogs nuts everytime someone rings the bell

Don’t get me wrong this is my favorite time of year. I’ve just never passed out candy. No big deal.


October 19th, 2010
8:52 am

Dear smh, if you aren’t going to turn your lights out then you have to deal with the knocking!!! Really, you can’t turn off your porch light for about 2 hours for 1 night? If you don’t want to celebrate, fine, no problem, but don’t get all huffy when folks knock on your door!!

The church things are so hypocritical. My son’s school (and academy) has a “fall festival” on Halloween night every year. Kids come in costumes (but only “happy costumes”, whatever that means). They play games for candy. Ok, so if they are so against Halloween, then why are they hosting a celebration? Personally, I think Halloween is what you make of it. If you don’t believe that it is evil, then it isn’t!!

Costuming is fun for me. I’d make them if I could, but usually end up buying some things, and altering them, or just making some pieces. This year my son is going an a soldier, so I didn’t really have a whole lot to make except for the boot covers so he looks like he’s wearing tall army boots. Last year, however, my son told me he wanted to be a traffic cone!!!!

bunch of yentas

October 19th, 2010
8:55 am

Halloween is my favorite holiday by far.

There are several wonderful neighborhoods for trick-or-treating in Atlanta.

We always attend the Little 5 Points Parade. My child always dresses as something scary as opposed to super heros and such.

And we always trick-or-treat and leave candy on the door step in a bowl for others.

Halloween is the greatest holiday because it changes for you as you age and always offers you something. As a child, you get the fun of costumes and candy. As a teenager, the fun of mischief. As a young adult, the fun parties with the sexy outfits. As a parent, the fun of taking your children trick-or-treating. As a grandparent, an opportunity to see all of the children. Something for everyone.


October 19th, 2010
8:57 am

Halloween is my FAVORITE holiday! I love the fact that all the houses on my street go all out with decorations. Our little in town neighborhood is actually great for trick or treating. You never know around the Grant Park area -I’ve lived in several places around there and with some you get trick or treaters and have good houses and others you don’t, but our neighborhood is great! We’re having a little Halloween party for a few kids who are friends of my boys’ a few hours before dark and then heading out “en masse” for trick or treating. I’m going to hang back this year to hand out candy. I enjoy going out and staying to hand out, so we take turns from year to year. Grant Park proper -around the park and Grant Central pizza also has great trick or treating!

My mother loved Halloween and my parents always decorated and wore masks to scare little kids. They have around 150-200 trick or treaters every year, and it was huge to me as a kid, so I have really enjoyed passing that joy along! My poor Dad just can’t get into it any more, and I know there are a bunch of disappointed kids who come by their house on Halloween night. I’m hoping maybe next year he’ll at least hand out candy.

I buy a mix of good chocolate candy and gummy/sour patch kid/tootsie pop/skittles type candy. Most of the kids I know actually prefer fruit-flavored or gummy candy, but they’re excited over chocolate too. When you come to our house, you get a big handful that has both, so you can eat what you want and your parents or siblings can eat the other! I’m actually pretty happy that I’ve become inured to the big bowl of candy and my kids’ leftovers. What was initially a nightmare at my office (a GIANT-size bowl of Halloween type chocolate candy bars and M&Ms year round!) has actually gotten me over it. If I ate it all the time, I would be enormous, so it’s just not a temptation anymore. I let the little ones binge on their candy on Halloween night, and if that means they puke -well they learn what eating too much candy does! Funny, they’ve always stopped before getting sick, which was something I DIDN’T do as a kid, but I take the leftovers and dole them out in the afternoons and after dinner for a few nights.

This year we’ll make our annual pilgrimage up to Grant Park on the 30th for the Halloween Parade and Festival -so much fun! Everyone parades around the park in their costumes and then there’s a kid-oriented Halloween festival in the park afterward. For that and on Halloween (when I’ll sit on our porch w/the candy and some beer), I’ll be dressing as a ghost as requested by my oldest (but a cool one -not just a white sheet with holes cut in it), and my little ones are going as Batman and Robin this year. We bought the costumes because I’m not crafty or handy, and that’s what the 4 year old wanted to be. Since the 2 year old doesn’t care yet, I thought him being Robin would be cute. My oldest started caring about his Halloween costume when he was close to 3 and wanted to be a cowboy. Last year he was a police officer -and STILL wears that costume all the time, and this year it’s alllllll Batman. Next year my youngest will probably have a preference. They can choose whatever they want. My hubby never gets into dressing up until the last minute -and then he wants to! I’m trying to goad him into thinking about it this weekend. Our house is decorated with skeletons hanging, giant spiders and spider web and lots of pumpkins!

@MJG -my household is CRAZED over Swedish Fish! Now that is one candy I won’t buy, because I would have already eaten it all if I could have fought off the boys! My husband loves them too, and he’s not much of a sweet eater. We get the 5 lb Target bag when we go on vacation and it lasts about 2 days! Most kids I know do love them, so that was probably a good call.

@smh -it must be nice to know you’re too lazy to give kids candy all the while yours go off and get it from other houses. You really know how to put the kill in “killjoy.”


October 19th, 2010
8:58 am

OH -about allergies -not going to be concerned with it. I buy the candy I want to give out, and if some kid can’t eat it -that’s the parents job to go through it first anyway. As I said, I give out a mixture of fruity/gummy/sucker stuff and good chocolate stuff, so most kids will find something they can eat out of that.


October 19th, 2010
9:05 am

The little guy always dresses up! Either me, the hubby or one of the big brothers take him out and someone sits home. We actually like it when the big brother is around. We will switch up after about an hour so one person doesn’t have to do it all!

We buy the “good” candy and big variety of it too! We will usually let the little one grab a handful and the big ones limit to a few pieces (because, man, they sure can be greedy!) If we run low on candy, we will pour the boys goodies back into the candy dish to keep it full!

At the end of the night, we will divide it between everyone! There are some things that I like, etc. He still has PLENTY! Our neighborhood is very fun!


October 19th, 2010
9:06 am

@ JATL…this is EXACTLY the part I do not understand:

@smh -it must be nice to know you’re too lazy to give kids candy all the while yours go off and get it from other houses. You really know how to put the kill in “killjoy.”

take your kids somewhere else but do not pass out candy at your house…huh? Maybe even give a few bags to someone who DOES have a lot of kids in their neighborhood?


October 19th, 2010
9:09 am

Can anyone explain to my why neighborhoods wont trick or treat on Sundays? They all do it on Saturday night…


October 19th, 2010
9:10 am

I buy name brand candy and try to make sure that is made in the USA. There’s so much candy made in China and Mexico. With all the recalls I would rather be safe than sorry. Besides, candy is cheap. The best candy goes to the neighborhood kids and their friends in generous amounts. Kids from outside my neighborhood arriving by car usually get 1 lollipop or 1 piece of hard candy. If the neurotic parents drive up after 9pm nothing will be left.

I live in a small neighborhood with 60 homes on 1 acre lots and approx 15-20 distribute candy. However, it is enough candy for us. We do not freak out, because our child is not getting enough candy nor do we turn it into a competition, driving from neighborhood to neighborhood. It is easy to identify the outsiders, because their parents are lazy and drive them. I understand trick-o-treating with a friend from the neighborhood. However, contributing to the Halloween traffic problem because you have decided to turn Trick-O-Treating into a competitive sport is absurd. If your neighborhood does not distribute enough candy, go to a Trunk-o-Treat or walk in a friend’s neighborhood. Don’t clog up the neighborhoods driving your cars and creating a danger for the children.


October 19th, 2010
9:12 am

@MJG -no, you’re not in the minority. When I was single and no kids -I gave out candy. My parents haven’t had a child at home in 23 years, but gave out candy as well as all the other older people in their neighborhood. I know a number of houses in my neighborhood where there are no kids or the folks are older or single or whatever, and they give out candy BECAUSE IT’S FUN! Making a little kids’ night is awesome -and not something a lot of people have the chance to do very often. It also is a great way to foster community in your neighborhood. The way I feel about it is -if you don’t give out candy or allow your kids to participate for “religious” reasons -you’re misinformed and misguided. If you allow your kids to go out while you sit at home in the dark -you’re cheap and lazy. Basically, if you darken your house because it just seems like a bother to you -you’re also cheap and lazy -or horribly depressed, which is sad (I’m thinking of my Dad who seriously is upset by it because my Mother loved it so, and she died right before Halloween last year).

@JJ -I love the fact that you decorate and that’s definitely in the spirit. I get that you don’t have many kids in your neighborhood -but that should make it even less of a hassle! Just buy a little candy and give it to them. When you have a decorated house, kids and parents SCOUT THAT OUT as a place to trick or treat, so it’s doubly disappointing!


October 19th, 2010
9:16 am

@JJ -if a kid comes to our house on Saturday, they’ll be told to return on Sunday. A bunch of idiot religious nut ignoramuses (who still amazingly enough let their kids trick or treat), think it’s a “sin” to celebrate Halloween on Sunday. I have no time for that type of stupidity -you do it on the day of the week it falls on!

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October 19th, 2010
9:25 am

We (when we had T or T’s) always gave out the good stuff..Each kid usually got 3-4 (bite size) candies..Snickers, Reeses Cups, 3 Musketeers and that kind of candy..

We decorate every year with lights, pumpkins and spider webs every where..I guess I don’t understand if you know that kids are out knocking on doors and you don’t want to give out candy, WHY do you leave your front lights on? We were always told if the light was on, then we could go to that house..I’m not that into showing off my house just to show it off..

@BGB..I was very lucky in finding the girl a custome at Goodwill..Still in a sealed package with everything in it..Cost me $2.52..Have you tired something like that? I usually buy customes after Halloween and that’s what they wear the next year..So far, this has worked out for us..As for driving versus walking, I’m with you and MJG..GET out and WALK..We always meet up at my sisters house and all of us walk together..So much fun..Last year we went to a neighborhood in Smyrna and had a blast..


October 19th, 2010
9:26 am

We live in a neighborhood without many kids so the years we’ve stayed home, there have only been maybe 10 kids come through. Half the homes don’t have lights on so our kids don’t have a lot of places to go to trick-or-treat. In years past, we’ve either gone to a friend’s neighborhood or to the local church fall festival.

I really don’t see what the problem is with fall festivals at churches on Halloween. When we have gone to the local church, my kids enjoyed playing games, doing the bouncy rides and riding the hay ride. They still got to dress up but also got to play some. Since our neighborhood really doesn’t have a lot of trick-or-treating available, this has been a great alternative for us.

I don’t expect to trick-or-treat this year since it falls on a Sunday and we’ll be at our regular night-time church service. We probably won’t be done in time to go. Instead we’ll go to a fall festival earlier in the week and the kids can dress up then.

Does anyone’s neighborhood do trick-or-treating on Saturday since Halloween falls on Sunday this year? I’ve seen this in the past but hadn’t heard anything about it this year.

Best Holiday!!

October 19th, 2010
9:34 am

Can someone explain why the Baptists or whoever are so against Halloween? How lame is that to deprive their kids of a fun experience that really has nothing to do with the devil or whatever evil thing they are afraid of.


October 19th, 2010
9:35 am

I don’t worry about the candy allergy. If a child is that allergic, they should be really aware of what they are or aren’t allowed to eat. OR the Parent should be right there to go through the candy received to be sure there is nothing in the bag that could cause problems. They can’t expect all their neighbors to keep up with what candy is or isn’t acceptable.

We buy candy that we like to eat so that when there is some leftover (there always is), we have something we enjoy eating.


October 19th, 2010
9:37 am

Halloween is AWESOME! It’s just all in fun! No big meal to cook and digest, no putting up with annoying in-laws, no presents to buy and wrap! Just dressing up and having FUN!

My kids love it and so do I! My husband stays home and hands out the candy. Our home has a very steep and unfriendly driveway, so we set up decorations, chairs, and candy at the bottom of the driveway and have a blast!

I usually go out with one or two other moms to escort the kids.

Boo to those of you that are Halloween grinches.


October 19th, 2010
9:38 am

I didn’t trick or treat much as a youngster, but as I get “older” I do enjoy giving out candy since I now have a home in a subdivision community. Also I buy good stuff, but the stuff I don’t like, so therefore none of it goes into me!:)! just an FYI if you are guilty of hitting the chocolate before Halloween.


October 19th, 2010
9:39 am

Sorry for the mispellings..


October 19th, 2010
9:48 am

@BestHoliday – I have a co-worker who NEVER let her kids go trick or treating. She would dress them up as Biblical things, and would take them to her church for the “Fall Festival”.


October 19th, 2010
9:53 am

I think the main objection to Halloween is probably that it could be seen as Celebrating witchcraft or devils. Since witchcraft or calling up demons is specifically forbidden in the Bible, celebrating them even fairly innocently could be considered wrong also.

It’s hard to think of it that way for a lot of us because today’s version of Halloween is much more light-hearted than it’s original roots of scaring away evil spirits. Also, so many of the costumes now are just Disney characters instead of witches, etc.

I don’t personally have a problem with Halloween. My parents (who were Baptist) never had a problem with us dressing up or going trick-or-treating except when it fell on Sunday and then mainly because we were at church as usual.

When I was a teen, we went to a church that put on a Trail of Terror every year. We would scare the pants off of people then at the end, they were given the gospel. Very fun and had people lined up every year to go through.

Best Holiday!!

October 19th, 2010
10:04 am

If Halloween started out as a way of scaring away evil spirits, etc. then I still don’t see how the religious people would object. It’s not about devil worship or anything like that. These people are just ill-informed and superstitious in my opinion.


October 19th, 2010
10:14 am

@penguinmom I do understand some churches doing their Fall Festivals on Halloween but I think it then pulls lots of families out of their neighborhoods and I think Halloween is one of those things that can foster community within neighborhoods so I’d rather people stay in their neighborhoods. Of course this is all from the perspective of someone who has always lived in a neighborhood with lots of houses and I get annoyed when people aren’t home. I wish our church was doing theirs on Saturday this year instead of on Halloween so we wouldn’t have to choose. Our church has been begging people to sign up to decorate their vehicles and come help with games and bounce houses and stuff but we want to be in our neighborhood on Halloween so instead they’re getting a few bags of candy from us. I know some of the churches around us try to schedule theirs on different days just so they don’t conflict with each other though and my hope is that the people in our ‘hood go to a church function another day and stay home on Sunday (I like to see all the kids in our ‘hood dressed up and having fun!) I do know of one large ‘hood near us which has designated Saturday as their T-R-T night but I’ll be curious to see how many knocks they get from kids who ‘didn’t get the memo’.

I’ve learned that most people who say they don’t want their kids to participate in Halloween functions have no real basis for their opinion and can’t give a good argument why they don’t want their kids to dress up. I do understand the people who don’t want their kids to dress up as scary, evil things- fine, that’s your right. But what exactly is wrong with your kids dressing up as a super hero or a princess, a firefighter or bumble bee? Yep, nothing :)

My inlaws didn’t let their kids dress up for Halloween (my husband never got to go T-R-T) but I’ve basically made him dress up every year we’ve been together and now he enjoys Halloween as much as I do. When his little sister was 13 and had never been, we got her a costume and invited her to our house to go with us. My MIL was a little pissed (but that’s nothing new) but she couldn’t give me a good argument for not allowing her to go.


October 19th, 2010
10:15 am

Dang, sorry for the long post. I need to quit being so wordy.


October 19th, 2010
10:17 am

We live in a small neighborhood, and have a steep driveway. I always buy full size candy bars from Costco to reward the few willing to make the trek up the hill. Each year it seems fewer and fewer kids are out.

My family has gone whole hog on decorating in the past, with speakers playing spooky music, computer screens showing moving heads in the windows, fog machines, etc. Now that my last has left for college I know we won’t make that effort again.

This year our neighborhood chili cook-off party is being held on the 31st. My plan is to bring the candy there and hand it out to the kids. I do not want any of it left in the house, since I don’t eat it and the boys won’t be around.


October 19th, 2010
10:30 am

I always knew a few kids whose families didn’t trick or treat because they felt it was satanic/promoted witchcraft/whatever, but the times that the community moved Trick or Treating to Saturday, Oct 30, the majority of people seemed to be more concerned with scheduling conflicts like penguinmom said. Most people in our little town went to church services on Sunday evenings, so rather than make people choose, we did Halloween on Saturday night. We did the same thing when Halloween landed on Friday if there was a home football game that night :) .

The last year I lived in Atlanta, several counties, including DeKalb, asked people to go out on Saturday, but that just seemed to cause confusion and folks were trick or treating both nights. I felt bad when I didn’t have any candy for kids that showed up Sunday night — I wasn’t home on Saturday, so I didn’t buy candy thinking that was when they’d be coming by — oh well.

Anyone here make kids work for their candy? My friend from St. Louis said they used to go “trick and treating” meaning you had to do a trick (tumbling, tell a good halloween joke, whatever) to get a treat and better tricks (say, walking on your hands) earned more/better treats!


October 19th, 2010
10:34 am

@Aiscia…our apartment complex (past several years) did not allow trick or treat. So I took my kids to the subdivison right behind us. Most of their school friends (and a few teachers) lived in it. We did 1 street…that’s it. 1 street. I parked my car and we walked the whole street. I did not drive house to house.

As far as the parent who drove with the tail of their van open…that is just rediculous…and we saw pleanty. In fact if I see a car just following I don’t open the door…and that included back when I had infants and lived in a condo.


October 19th, 2010
10:34 am

@penguinmom -I’m glad you’re in the Halloween spirit -but give your kids a treat and ditch Sunday night services for trick or treating! The holiday is on Sunday and do some research -has nothing to do with evil or devil worship -so shouldn’t Sunday morning services be enough? You trick or treat on Halloween, be it Monday, Sunday, Saturday or Wednesday.

Great article on origins of Halloween:

@TechMom and Best Holiday -EXACTLY!


October 19th, 2010
11:02 am

@JATL – my kids think going to church is a treat so they would be disappointed to miss it. Plus, my 14-year-old helps with the sound/powerpoint in the K-1st graders room in the evening service so he can’t really miss.


October 19th, 2010
11:03 am

Um….Halloween–or at least trick or treating did not start as something with evil spirits…Hallow means holy….It is part of a Holy Day celebration…oh heck…go read my first post if you want to know.

Etymology…it’s just words.


October 19th, 2010
11:05 am

@Lori, an academy is a school. That’s confusing.

I give out great candy because I hated getting the cheap stuff when I was a kid. Most kids prefer the sour candy over chocolate. That amazes me because I LOVE chocolate. Always have.

As for churches, I get a little confused too, but I’m sure it’s because most people don’t know the origins of Halloween. If I have more kid tell me it’s the devil’s birthday! That’s so ridiculous. Then again, they swear that Jesus was born on December 25 and it’s in the bible. We must really do a better job of educating our kids.

I’ve always enjoyed Halloween. It’s a lot of fun. I only have a few years left and then I won’t have any kiddies at home to go trick or treating. I’m enjoying each year I have left. We have lots of kids in my neighborhood so I’ll be giving out candy for many more years.


October 19th, 2010
11:11 am

We don’t get trick or treaters and I miss seeing the cute costumes. When we live in a subdivision we would always have one adult stay home and pass out candy and swap out way through so each of us got time to celebrate with our daughter the excitment of running around in a coustmes. My mother now live in my house in Gwinnett. She keeps the lights off to deter the kids but some still climb the stairs to try to get candy. It is not that she doesn’t want to celebrate, but she is not in the best of health so climbing up and down stairs is to much for her, standing outside to hand out the candy or using a folding chair is too painful so she has had to opt out of giving out candy. She would like to leave a bowl of candy out, but the one year she tried it was stolen within the first half hour.

I loved to make costumes and made my daughters every year, until the year her father took her to buy a store bought costume. From that point on no more handmade costumes. I had been making identical costumes for her and her my twinn doll and I think the cut and half sewn pieces are still packed away. That was about the last time I used the sewing machine.

As a young adult I loved dressing up and going to big parties. Never was at a loss for costume designs and since I could sew, never had to buy a costume. I really miss fabric stores, Hobby Lobby and Michaels just don’t carry enough options in fabric. IMO


October 19th, 2010
11:15 am

@LM – Joann’s has a good selection of fabric and patterns. Much closer to what Hancocks use to have.


October 19th, 2010
12:42 pm

I love Halloween! I wouldn’t miss going trick or treating with my kids for the world, but, then again, I’m the kind of grown up who would still be trick or treating myself if I could! Fortunately, my MIL lives close by and is willing to come over and man the candy station at our house while we take the kids out. I always buy descent candy. I don’t want any disgruntled trick or treaters vandalizing my house!

My son has a serious peanut allergy, but he knows which candy has peanuts in it and we have a little deal worked out with him where my husband and I take the peanut stuff off his hands in exchange for dragging him to every house in our neighborhood. You should see my kids’ haul! Forget about hiding any of it, I usually end up throwing some of it away. I always tell them they have until Christmas to work on it, then the rest gets tossed.

I noticed several people mentioned lame, and usually church oriented, Halloween parties. Our church, fortunately, does not have any problem with Halloween, but one of the ladies at our church has decided to hold her own party for the kids at her house. At this “party” the kids are to dress up as their favorite biblical character and roast sweet potatoes and other wholesome snacks (no candy). She’s a really sweet lady, and I’m sure her intentions are good, but all I could think when I read her invite was “what was she thinking?!”

Theresa Walsh Giarrusso

October 19th, 2010
12:43 pm

Quick interruption — Gwinnett County is named top Urban School — the biggest education prize in the country. Please see Get Schooled for all the details!

Not all Baptists...

October 19th, 2010
1:03 pm

…not even Southern Baptists, are against Halloween – we had this discussion this time last year, too, on this blog. I was born and bred Southern Baptist, and my family and all the churches to which we belonged (in 4 states) celebrated Halloween each and every year.

Granted, most churches (Baptist, Methodist, Presbyterian, Catholic, etc) have pretty much morphed into the “Fall Festival” or “trunk or treat” mode, but most do not denigrate Halloween; they just ask that no “scary” costumes be worn…