Halloween is here, and it’s time to celebrate! Bring out the candy and get ready for trick or treating! Go purchase some crazy customers, sweet and sour treats, and colorful decorations.
This Halloween, there’s no better time to express our sincerest appreciation for your business. We value the trust you have placed in WheelHouse Solutions to help you with your organization’s technology goals.
Here are a spooky array of facts to discover that’ll make you the brainiest of the bunch on this All Hallows’ Eve.
Silly String Ban
Silly string fans should stay far away from Hollywood on Halloween. A ban on the toy, created in 2004, is only enforced there on October 31, according to the The New York Times. If you’re caught with sticky hands, expect to pay a $1,000 fine.
New Englanders may be familiar with this alternative name for the holiday. According to Live Science, some pranksters in the northeastern United States keep up with this stinky tradition of collecting rotten vegetables and leaving them near their neighbors’ doors.
No matter how scary your local haunted house is, it probably can’t top the Haunted Cave in Lewisburg, Ohio. Measuring 3,564 feet long, the Guinness World Records has named it the world’s longest haunted house. Even spookier: It’s located 80 feet below ground in an abandoned mine.
Since its invention in 1898 by the Herman Goelitz Confectionary Company of Fairfield, California (now known as the Jelly Belly Candy Company), candy corn has been wildly popular—so much so that today, nearly 35 million pounds of candy corn are produced each year.
From its vampy costumes and sweet treats to macabre household decorations, Halloween is a big business. So, in fact, that it’s the second-largest commercial holiday in America-only Christmas surpasses it in sales. According to the National Retail Federation, consumers spent $5.8 billion on Halloween 2010, and by 2015, that figure jumped to nearly $7 billion.
Animal Skins and Heads
According to ancient Roman records, tribes located in today’s Germany and France traditionally wore costumes of animal heads and skins to connect to spirits of the dead. This tradition continued into modern day celebrations of Samhain, the Celtic holiday that inspired Halloween in America. On this day, merry-makers often dressed as evil spirits simply by blackening their faces. The leader of the Samhain parades wore a white sheet and carried a wooden horse head or a decorated horse skull (a modern Welsh version of this costume is shown above). Young people also celebrated by cross-dressing.
The jack-o’-lantern comes from an old Irish tale about a man named Stingy Jack. According to folklore, Stingy Jack was out getting sloshed with the Devil when Jack convinced his drinking partner to turn himself into a coin to pay for the drinks without spending money. Jack then put the Devil, shaped like a coin, into his pocket, which also contained a silver cross that kept the Devil from transforming back. Jack promised to free the Devil as long as the Devil wouldn’t bother him for a year, and if he died, the Devil could never claim his soul. Jack tricked the Devil again later, getting him to pick a piece of fruit out of a tree and then carving a cross into the bark when the Devil was in the branches. This trick bought Jack another 10 years of devil-free living.
When Jack finally died, God decided he wasn’t fit for heaven, but the Devil had promised never to claim his soul for hell. So Jack was sent off to roam Earth with only a burning coal for light. He put the coal into a turnip as a lantern, and Stingy Jack became “Jack of the Lantern” or “Jack o’ Lantern.” Based on this myth, the Irish carved scary faces into turnips, beets, and potatoes to scare away Stingy Jack or any other spirits of the night.
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