Whatever Happened to Halloween of Yesteryear? - KCBD NewsChannel 11 Lubbock

10/28/02

Whatever Happened to Halloween of Yesteryear?

It's still a ghoulishly good time for most, but no one can argue that Halloween has lost some of its innocence over the years. Parents are now opting for organized celebrations rather than the traditional night out trick or treating.

It's still the spookiest night of the year. Some say the night derives from evil. Spirits of those who had died throughout the preceding year would come back on All Hallows Eve in search of living bodies to possess. Their only chance at the afterlife. Another account is that it's a celebration of Roman traditions, such as their day to honor Pomona, the Roman Goddess of fruit and trees, which might explain the origin of bobbing for apples on Halloween.

Whatever the story, we enjoy scaring the daylights out of each other for one night a year. The problem now is, things have changed, because of abductions, drunk driving, poisoned or tainted candy and terrorist attacks. There are real concerns for moms and dads today. "It's a lot more dangerous. You can't let the kids go out by themselves anymore, because you can't trust people with your kids," says parent Crystal Ledgewood.

"We live in a society today where you just kind of gotta watch everything. Shootings can happen at anytime to anybody, so I just really pay attention to what my kids are doing," says parent Amy Shirley.

"I've lived here about 12 years and when I first got here you could see kids all over the place up and down the street. Now I'm lucky if I can give an entire bag of candy away. Usually I have leftovers," says parent Karin Slyker.

Despite what you've heard, we couldn't find one parent that has completely given up on the holiday. It's still a great time for kids, parents are just opting for alternatives, rather than letting their kids run carefree throughout the neighborhood. "I always walk him to the door and I only take him to people that I know," says Ledgewood.

Churches are now getting in on the fun. At the South Plains Church of Christ, kids trick or treat car to car in the parking lot. "Last year we began trunk or treat. One issue is safety and another is time. You don't have a lot of time with busy parents. Members come and gather and it's just a good time," says Minister Jim Brewer.

Schools are also getting in on the act. At Cavazos Junior High Principal David Vasquez says they've combined Halloween with the Mexican holiday 'the Day of the Dead' for a celebration on November 1st, right in between the two holidays. "In the past everybody's gone out into the neighborhoods and trick or treated. What we try to do here is have fun and that way parents know where their kids are," says Vasquez.

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