What's going on for Hallowe'en?
29th September 2009
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I'm looking for Hallowe'en events!  I have found organised events for children in Dudley, Stourbridge, Himley... but nothing local.  Have we really got to go as far as the Black Country for an organised event?

I'm keeping an eye out on the Scouts and Guides websites to see if they are doing things and opening them up to the public, but so far, it seems we Droitwich folk are no so bothered about celebrating Hallowe'en.

I always thought that it was a pagan festival, but Hallowe'en is a Christian festival, first proclaimed within the Benedictine Order in the 998.  It was recognised by Pope John XIX in 1006.  It is the eve of Hallowmass, now known as All Saints' Day which honours and remembers the dead, particularly the saintly.

In Ireland it is said on Hallowe'en night that the fairy hills were thrown open and fairies swam forth; and any bold enough could peep in the open green hills to see their treasure... if he dared!

In the North of England, a sprig of rowan was put above the door to ward off evil, and a bowl of oats in water or milk was left outside the door to appease any visiting spirits.  To frighten away witches, people took to carving faces in hollowed-out turnips and placing candles inside.  This custom has been handed down to present-day with the New World pumpkin "Jack-O-Lantern".

Nowadays, of course, the festival is very playful with children dressing up and going door to door trick or treating, which is just another way of getting sweets - my son LOVES it!

Keep checking back here on my progress to find local Hallowe'en events.

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