The wind is getting colder. The leaves are falling off tree branches. Skeleton cutouts and armies of pumpkins are filling convenience store shelves. Candy corn is relevant again. Dress up as your favorite celebrity or superhero, knock on doors, ask strangers for candy and receive it.
Throughout the years, Halloween has excited sweet-toothed adolescents and has awakened the inner child within developing adults in being a holiday with elements everyone can enjoy.
Students around campus responded to questions regarding the holiday. The questions ranged from asking if they were planning on wearing costumes this year, to what Halloween meant for them.
“Free candy,” freshman computer science major Zachary Anderson said. “I do it for the free candy.” Anderson plans on reusing the same costume from last year for the upcoming door-knocking season: a “teddy bear onesie.” Anderson recalled that his craziest costume was a dress that he wore for mostly gags.
Getting excited for Halloween as soon as September ends is not a unique experience, however. Every single student surveyed shared a likeness to the generosity illustrated by their neighbors in handing out king-sized chocolate bars and the like. Some students, however, had more individual and personal connections to the holiday. To these students, Halloween means more than scavenging dark streets in a mask. Freshman voice performance major Abigail Fish described the holiday as something more intimate.
“It means spending time with family,” Fish said. “We watch very bad horror movies.” Fish mentioned that she wore costumes every year, with her most recent costume being an inflatable T-rex, and her craziest costume being the Bob Ross to her friend’s painting. These are more creative attempts at dressing up compared to her witch in the fall of 2014, where Fish wore a pointed hat and called it a day.
The holiday is very much a family-oriented affair. Anderson added onto Fish’s comment, explaining the holiday inadvertently acts as bonding time with his parents and siblings.
“Nothing like looking like a fool with your favorite people,” Anderson said.
The favoritism for the holiday does not end with the freshman class. Senior nursing major Brittany Nesbitt is excited for Halloween this year.
“It is my favorite holiday,” Nesbitt said. “The parties, the free candy; you can dress up or be yourself without judgment.” Nesbitt’s most recent costume was a deer emoji. She commented on the fact that she has had a costume every year but has played it safe, with no costume venturing into weird or controversial territory.
Adults can enjoy holidays too. Junior nursing major Olivia Campbell is a mother of two and said she just might enjoy the holiday more than her children.
“I love all the holidays, but what makes [Halloween] special is that I can take a break from cooking. I order pizza,” Campbell said. “No cooking means happy Olivia, which means happy kids. Everyone wins.”
Whether you have a deep personal connection to the holiday or not, everyone is getting candy. It is this inherent desire, prewired into our minds for free sweets, and we cannot seem to get enough of them. Step one: decide to become someone or something else for one night. Step two: prepare a bag or pillow case. Step three: bring friends and/or family. Last, but not least, step four: have fun, because “everyone wins.”