Monday, October 28, 2013

Halloween: Celebration and Superstition

With roots that trace back to ancient Celtic festivals to ward off roaming ghosts, Halloween has evolved into a community event most often characterized by children dressed in costumes and modern-day trick-or-treating. 

My own childhood Halloweens were marked with a costume parade during elementary school, haunted houses set up by local farmers for area children to explore and modest amounts of candy. 

Today's Halloween is, well, not modest by any measure. In fact, according to The History Channel's website, Halloween traditions have grown, quite literally: 

  • US growers produce over 1.5 billion pounds of pumpkins per years, twice the weight of the Empire State building. 
  • Over 35 million pounds of candy corn are sold annually. That equals nine billion pieces or enough candy corn to circle the moon nearly 21 times if laid end-to-end. 
  • Nearly 120 million Americans dress in costume for Halloween. 
  • 50% of Americans decorate their yards for Halloween. 
  • 46% of American adults carve pumpkins.
  • 90% of parents admit to raiding their children's goody bags when they return home from trick-or-treating (guilty as charged!). 

While many countries have their own unique traditions to mark Halloween, it is celebrated around the world, ushering in the winter season. The Fauquier County Public Library joins in - with special "monster mash" themed story times for young children this week:

Preschoolers and kindergartners will enjoy Halloween Hoopla: 

If you would like to learn more about this frightful holiday, a quick search of our online catalog will return hundreds of results, from Hilarious Halloween Jokes by Alison Grams to Hallowe'en Party by Agatha Christie and a wide range of books in between. 

Whether you will be donning a costume and hitting the neighborhood streets for trick-or-treating, or trying to convince Fido that he will look adorable decked out as a pumpkin, have a bewitching Halloween! 

And, as always, happy reading! 
Lisa @ the Fauquier County Public Library 

To learn more about the Fauquier County Public Library's collection, events or programs, visit us on Facebook, Twitter or online.

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