Back in the Dark Ages when I was young enough to trick or treat, when I got back to the house with my overflowing pillow case, my mom took my haul right away. She dumped it all out and sifted through everything. Any fruit was tossed out along with any candy that had a torn wrapper or did not clearly have a store made, sealed wrapper. Homemade popcorn balls? Also gone.
It was never fun to see so many of my new treats thrown in the garbage. Next came the creepy explanation about crazy people who injected candy with poison or slipped razor blades into apples. “Better safe than sorry.” Mom would say.
But is this a legitimate concern? Running a search on the web, I found one article about a man who, in 1974, poisoned his son’s candy on Halloween. The Deer Park man put cyanide in a Pixy Stik and stapled it shut. See more at http://bit.ly/2elzpOM. He was convicted and given the death penalty. Aside from that story, authorities today consider the stories of dangerous objects or poisons in Halloween candy to be urban legends.
Perhaps these gruesome stories persist because they do, in some way, fit the scary and spooky nature of Halloween. Horror movies are replayed in October and being scared is part of the holiday. Maybe folks who hate dentists are conspiring to reduce the candy intake so kids have fewer cavities…
Now for the fun part! Texas usually has amazing weather on Halloween so it should be a fun and festive evening. It is always fun to see the houses that are decked out in spooky or whimsical decorations.
Here is a quick list of “trick or treating” etiquette:
- Have fun!
- Take pictures.
- Skip houses with no lights or decorations. Some people just do not want to participate.
- Remind your costumed charges that they must say “Trick or treat!” and say “Thank you!” Even if the person gives them a toothbrush, they say “thank you.”
- Bedazzle all the trick or treaters in your care with glow sticks so they stand out in the dark.
- Make them stop and check before crossing the street.
- Keep your group together and stay out of strangers’ houses.
- Tell the kids to keep you in sight.
- Yes, do check the candy for ripped wrappers or odd items. Some tricks include giving bags of rabbit food or inedible items.
- Do not vandalize any houses with eggs or toilet paper. If a person’s house is dark, respect that they chose to skip All Hallows Eve. If you don’t like what a person gives away, let it go.
Do not fret if you lose the coin toss with your spouse and you stay home to pass out the candy. Enjoy seeing all the costumes and excited kids.
When driving on Halloween, please slow down a bit. Keep a sharp eye out for darkly dressed kids dashing around. All the Kylo Rens, Darth Vaders, and other ghouls have black costumes so, yes, they will blend into the night.
Oh, and it is okay to charge a “parent” tax to encourage sharing the candy. A friend of mine with a diabetic child lets him trade his candy for a toy “gift certificate.” This is a great idea to let him join in the night without risking his health.
So, have a spooky spectacular night on Monday October 31st.
iQuriousKids is hosting a pumpkin decorating contest starting October 25th and a costume contest starting October 28th. Does your family have a winning pumpkin or costume? Show us your talent!
For all the details and how to enter, click here.
Tell me why you love Halloween in the comments below.
-By Cynthia Marple