I remember when there used to be hoards of costume dressed children trick-or-treating in my neighborhood. But over the years less and less children came and this year only one family knocked at our door. Although, my neighborhood is not a private community and there is no homeowner’s association, these types of neighborhoods always seem to have more trick-or-treating traffic. There were always trick-or-treaters swarming around the cul-de-sac. This year Halloween just did not feel the same with the streets eerily empty.
Nowadays, it is all about the Halloween parties for adults and children. I questioned this new trend. We cannot deny how the world has become a more dangerous place. It feels like the older I get, the more dangerous this country and my neighborhood becomes.
Many people my own age who used to enjoy trick-or-treating said that they were afraid to go walk about at night, especially on Halloween, telling me, “It’s just too dangerous where I live now. And those clowns walking around! Nuh-uh. I’m like really scared.”
The irony is not missed. The holiday that is meant to be one of tricks, treats, fun play, and costumes, is actually putting fear into many people’s hearts. The day that pretends to be scary is actually becoming scary. Many drunks from parties prow the streets. Pranks are becoming a little more intense and dangerous, for example, the clowns.
Yet, I have spoken to many people who have had a different experience this Halloween. I have a friend whose community takes Halloween very seriously. Her and her parents sat around a fire pit out in their front yard and gave out bucketfuls of candy to the trick-or-treaters.
Her neighborhood though consists of homeowners that have lived there their whole lives, growing up in one house and later the next generation moving two houses over, starting their own family. It is a community that still lives in the Halloween spirit without fear.
Although her community still held this tradition for morethan twenty years, my friend told me, “This year I’d say it was a medium influx of trick-or-treaters. There wasn’t a lot of kids like two years ago, but it was okay.”
I do not believe trick-or-treating will ever completely die away, but what can we say about the communities that trick-or-treating has died completely? Is that an indicator that trick-or-treating will perhaps one day become obsolete? Who knows, maybe Halloween parties will become our new traditions.