Break out the candy and light the candles in the jack-o-lanterns because Halloween is officially upon us! Hold off on the haunting, though, until you've tested your trivia knowledge with this spooktactular quiz. We hope that your Halloween brings lots of treats and no tricks.
In which country did Halloween originate? Halloween began in Ireland as the ancient Celtic festival of Samhain. Celts believed that on the night before the new year, the boundary between the worlds of the living and the dead became blurred. On the night of October 31st, they celebrated Samhain, when it was believed that the ghosts of the dead returned to earth. Over time, Halloween evolved into a secular, community-based event characterized by child-friendly activities such as trick-or-treating.
What Irish Tradition Turned the Fortunes of a Once-Unpopular Food? In the olden days, people didn't really like pumpkins, and they were more something farmers had to deal with getting rid of than something harvested for delicious pies. But in the 19th century, Irish immigrants started coming to America, bringing their traditions with them. Traditions that included carving turnips into lanterns for the Celtic festival of Samhain - a key originator of the Halloween holiday. And they found the perfect American substitute for the turnip: The pumpkin. Pumpkin sales and they became a staple of fall eating. All in all, it's hard to argue that it's a better choice than cabbage.
Costumes are key on Halloween, but in what state is it illegal to dress up as a priest? Alabama. In the state law, Section 13A-14-4 says that, "Fraudulently pretending to be clergyman" will get you arrested and fined. Hope that wasn’t your plan. If so, you either need to shelve the collar or consider heading somewhere else to celebrate.
Why Do We Give Out Candy on Halloween? Where exactly the tradition of trick or treating started is a matter of some debate. But when the custom first came to America in the 1920s and 30s, it wasn't just kids going door to door for candy. The practice back then would yield all sorts of treats including toys and money. And let's be honest, if you're a kid, you love candy, but you probably wouldn't have minded if you got a few less bags of candy corn and a bit more cash. So why did we make the transition to virtually everyone just giving fun-sized candy? You guessed it, the candy companies. They saw an opportunity and started marketing tiny, individually wrapped candies to families who mostly adopted the idea because it was just easier.
How much do Americans spend on Halloween candy? Americans will spend approximately $2.2 billion on Halloween candy, according to the National Retail Federation. More than 71% of those surveyed said they plan to hand out candy. (And those in the other 29% are hoping that they don’t get tricked as a result.) 35% of consumers plan to send a Halloween greeting card.