Explorations in Food, Fitness and Fun

13 Spooky Reasons Why Halloween is the Best Holiday

13 Spooky Reasons Why Halloween is the Best Holiday

With its roots from Ireland, Halloween, All-Hallows Eve or Sawhain comes, unfortunately, only once per year.  It has its origins in ancient Celtic traditions, but over the years, it has changed.  It is it frightening and fun. The air is crisp, the leaves are changing and football is on a couple days a week. So, it seems only natural to enjoy this annual tradition of Halloween.  Below are 13 reasons why you should like Halloween too.

Reason 1: Halloween specials

Charlie Brown, Cartoon, Halloween, Linus, Lucy, Great PumpkinIf you don’t like the Great Pumpkin, there may be something wrong with you.  It is on every year, and with 7.7 million viewers in 2016, it was almost as popular as the debate between Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump 30 minutes later.   This special gives great ideas for costumes like Charlie Brown’s ghost costume.  It also reminds you of what you got as a kid for “tricks or treats.”

Reason 2: It’s Fun with Parties.

Bobbing for apples, halloween, party, vintage

1915 Halloween Party

There is bobbing for apples and costume competitions!!  Plus there’s fun finger foods- get it, get it!?  Basically, it’s another excuse to get drunk on too much punch.

Reason 3: It’s Spooky

Moon, leaves, night, Halloween

Ghosts, ghouls, and goblins! There is no more frightening time a year then Halloween. Whether you’re watching the Michael Myers Halloween Movie or wandering through a graveyard, you have permission to be  frightened this time of year.

Reason 4: Candy

Halloween, reese's, milk duds, jolly ranchers, sweets

It’s time to steal all your kids’ Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups.  To purchase and hand out a bunch of bite-size candy and see the delight on kids faces as you hand it out to them is always nice. Plus snacking on them if there are particular kinds that you like, makes it even better.

Reason 5: Reminiscent of Childhood

Halloween, children, kids, jack o'lantern, pumpkin
Neighborhood Halloween Gathering

Even though  Halloween  is fun for adults, let’s face it, kids enjoy it even more!   I mean kids can’t really afford candy, so on this day they get free candy! They get to hang out with their friends and stay out late.  Looking back, how could this not have been a good time?

Reason 6: Don’t have to see family like other holidays

awkward family photo, Christmas, 1970s, 1978, reunion
Good Lookin’ Family Photo

Sometimes, and I’m speaking on behalf of a friend, getting together with family over the holidays is an obligation. On Halloween, apparantly, seeing relatives really isn’t something you do.  So unfortunately, you won’t get to see your uncle Bob drink too many beers and start complaining about politics or have to see your sister-in-law with her latest deadbeat boyfriend.

Reason 7: Costumes

Christopher Kimball, Witch, Costume, Halloween, party, America's test kitchen, Cook's Country, Milk Street, glasses
Lara as a Witch and Dan as Christopher Kimball, formerly of America’s Test Kitchen

Some couples like to get dressed up together and some don’t. Last year we both got dressed just not in matching costumes. Sometimes it’s exciting to dress up as something in the latest fad like America’s Test Kitchen,  which is still around but Christopher Kimball is now at Milk Street.  Of course old standbys like ghosts, witches or pirates are always fun as well.

Reason 8: Mischief Night

Halloween, toilet paper, mischief,tree, autumn, fall, prank
Toilet Papered

When I was a kid we used to play a game called ding dong ditch. We don’t really play it anymore but it was fun to get involved in pranks,  especially on curmudgeonly old men that live nearby.  But on Halloween, especially the night before Halloween, I think people are slightly more inclined to believe that they will get toilet-papered or egged.

Reason 9: Decorations

Halloween, decorations, ghosts, house, jack o'lantern, pumpkin, scary NandaroOwn work, CC BY-SA 4.0, Link

If it were up to me, we would’ve had our Halloween decorations up in August. You know in the month of August there’s not a whole lot to get excited about.  But it’s always fun to see who in the neighborhood puts up the most ridiculous decorations.  We have a house about half a mile from where we live which has decorations so outrageous that people drive in to see it. It’s even on the news.

Reason 10: There are Fun Foods

Chex Mix, Pretzel, Candy Corn, M&Ms
Yummy Pumpkin Spice Chex Mix

Just like having Halloween parties no entertaining for this holiday would be complete without fun Halloween foods! There is Pumpkin Spice everything- just go to Trader Joes. I think it’s a good excuse to have extra candy and lots of baked goods which are outside our diets.

Reason 11: Salem, Massachusetts

House of Seven Gables, Salem, Massachusetts, Halloween
Spooky House of the Seven Gables

There is the Salem Witch Museum, the House of Seven Gables, the Peabody-Essex Museum and loads of weird people.  With the home of the infamous witch trials from the late 1600s, there is no shortage of history and macabre happenings.  Salem, MA, just about an hour away from us on the North Shore, draws a big crowd on weekends in October, for good reason.

Reason 12: carving pumpkins

Christopher Kimball, Witch, Costume, Halloween, party, America's test kitchen, Cook's Country, Milk Street, glasses

What a fun activity!  For the price of two pumpkins, which are $5 or less at the grocery store, you can have hours of fun. You are limited only by your imagination.  Above are two jack o’lanterns that we did a couple years ago.  How spooky they look with a candle in them, sitting on the front porch on a crisp October evening.  As an added bonus, after scooping out the innards, you can roast the pumpkin seeds, which are also an excellent source of calcium and zinc.

Reason 13: Day of the Dead

Day of the Dead, Dia De Los Muertos, San Francisco, Party, Fiesta, November 1
Day of the Dead Procession in San Francisco

Just when you thought the fun of Halloween was over, there is the Day of the Dead, or Dia de Los Muertos, on November 1.  Traditionally a Mexican holiday, this celebration is prevalent in the United States as well.  Like the name of the holiday implies, the Day of the Dead involves remembering those who have died.  There are parades in many cities with food, people getting dressed up and dancing.

These are some of the reasons that we like Halloween. We are probably forgetting some.  It is probably not the healthiest holiday, so make sure that you head on over to the fitness page to get back into shape and food page to get back on your diet in early November.

Halloween is really the gateway to some of the bigger holidays in the year, including Thanksgiving and Christmas. So, it is probably for the best that Halloween is pretty low-key holiday to get us all prepared for the festivities in the following months.

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