It's Halloween again! The origins and traditions

Updated: 17 Sep 2012
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WOX Halloween Costume Party

Xiamen's scariest, most creative, sexiest, most hilarious, and most traditional Halloween costumes were gathered for a night of spooky partying in Havana Restaurant, Haiwan Park, on the night of 29th Oct, 2011


Most holidays commemorate or celebrate something, but what about Halloween? What is Halloween actually a celebration of? And how did this peculiar tradition originate? Is it, as some claim, a kind of demon worship? Or is it just a harmless vestige of some ancient pagan ritual where folks get together for parties, dress up in Halloween costumes and bob for apples?


The word itself, "Halloween," actually originates from the Catholic Church and the night of All Hallows Eve. November 1st, "All Hollows Day" (or "All Saints Day"), is a Catholic day of observance in honor of saints. However, in the 5th century BC, in Celtic Ireland, summer officially ended on October 31st. The holiday was called Samhain (sow-en), the Celtic New year.

One story says that, on that day, the disembodied spirits of all those who had died throughout the preceding year would come back in search of living bodies to possess for the next year. It was believed to be their only hope for the afterlife. The Celts believed all laws of space and time were suspended during this time, allowing the spirit world to intermingle with the living.

Irish immigrants have been credited with bringing the holiday to the United States in the 1800’s, although it didn’t become popular in the United States until the 1930’s.

No one is absolutely sure where the practice of “trick or treating" originated. Some have credited the practice to the medieval custom of "souling”, where people went door to door asking for food, and others have attributed it to the Irish custom of tipping over outhouses and pulling other pranks. In either case the custom of dressing up in a costume and going from house to house asking for treats has turned Halloween in to the second largest commercial holiday after Christmas.

Almost twenty-five percent of all the candy purchased and consumed in the United States is concentrated around October 31st. Snickers bars have been the most popular treat at Halloween. Other particular favorites include popcorn balls and caramel apples.

Xiamen has its very own Halloween tradition as well, and WOX helps celebrate this special day in style. On Friday, the 26th October, WOX will stage its annual WOX Halloween costume party at Haiwan Park. The celebration will begin at around 8:00 pm and continue into the early hours of the next morning at a larger party venue covering Havana Restaurant, J.J. Bar & Grill and the fountain area between the two venues this year.


Related articles:

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Comments Area ( Total Comments: 2 )
Penny_XM Commented on 24 Sep 2012
wow How time flies!! I was there last time!!!haha
bongants66 Commented on 24 Sep 2012
We are all looking forward to the Halloween Party! Last year's party was a blast.