Go on, get into the spirit

HAIR-RAISER OR FUNDRAISER? YOU CHOOSE THIS HAL­LOWEEN

Mt Druitt - St Mary's Standard (East) - - NEWS - Fol­low me on Face­book: face­book. com/JournoJack

NOT SO long ago, Hal­loween barely reg­is­tered as a blip on Aus­tralia’s cul­tural radar, apart from The Simpsons’ an­nual spook­fest.

In the past few years, though, Hal­loween has be­come a big deal. That has kept lol­ly­mak­ers happy but has also trig­gered a bit of de­bate.

Some grum­ble that we shouldn’t fol­low an Amer­i­can tra­di­tion that means noth­ing to us, or that it is just an­other ex­cuse for shops to sell stuff. Oth­ers see it as harm­less fun for chil­dren who can’t wait to pop in the fake fangs and a cou­ple of blood cap­sules.

One thing I’ve no­ticed is that Hal­loween has de­vel­oped a real com­mu­nity feel.

Whole streets get into the spirit (see what I did there?) as houses are fes­tooned with spi­der webs and ghoul­ish dec­o­ra­tions, neigh­bours dress up and come to­gether for street par­ties, and clubs hold fam­ily nights.

If Hal­loween brings com­mu­ni­ties to­gether for a bit of fun, it has got my vote.

If you are still not con- vinced, you could con­sider swap­ping the hair-rais­ing for fundrais­ing and use the day to help a char­ity.

Healthy Bones Aus­tralia, for ex­am­ple, runs Scream for Hal­loween to raise money for os­teo­poro­sis aware­ness and re­search.

If you are out trick-or- treat­ing on Oc­to­ber 31, stay safe and make sure the kids are su­per­vised. If you are at home dol­ing out good­ies, please stock up on Clink­ers. They are my favourite.

Hal­loween on Oc­to­ber 31 falls on a Satur­day this year. Don’t for­get the trick-or-treaters!

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