Costumes, Trick ‘r Treating, and Haunted Houses.
All three have had their place in countless of my Halloweens. I’ve dressed up as Ron Weasley (from Harry Potter) more times than I can count. Of course, I’ve accepted that more people will say I look like Ed Sheeran now than Ron Weasley.
Trick ‘r Treating is a child’s dreams come to life. I grew up in a household where sweets were literally a treat. So Halloween was a chance to really stock up for the next couple months. After a night out, we’d have an assortment of pops and chocolates that we would sort and pose with for pictures.
We so carefully savored our collection of candy and soda that I remember that we still had a whole row of pop in the basement fridge. You can imagine then, much to my dismay, when my Mom told some distant relative to help themselves to the pop in the basement. Not the Grape Crush, I thought to myself. I was sure there was only one left in the fridge, and the odds of me getting my hands on another can of Grape Crush would surely not be until the following Halloween. I waited with bated breath as my relative… took the last can of Grape Crush.
As I grew older, trick ‘r treating fell by the wayside. Oh, we still did it. In fact, I think we trick ‘r treated even harder as adults. But, we also had driver licenses and cars, and off we would go down the back roads in search of a “haunted house”. We’d climb over a fence into a field and enter the rundown house to explore it. I definitely remember ripping a pair of jeans after they got caught in the barbwire.
Yet, over the years, these three things have come and gone in my life. Sometimes I’ll dress up, and sometimes I won’t. I haven’t trick ‘r treated since high school, and haunted houses are now just abandoned warehouses. However, there has always been one Halloween tradition that has remained constant in my life.
The classic Disney Channel Original Movie, and its two sequels (yes, two), have become part of an annual tradition. In a sea of scary movies to watch, Halloweentown stood out in the pack as a wholesome family option that was packed with comedy, emotion, action, and just a great story.
As a kid, it wasn’t officially Halloween until I had seen Halloweentown, Halloweentown II: Kalabar’s Revenge, and Halloweentown High. I can still remember seeing that I had missed the earlier showing of Halloweentown II, my favorite installment of the series, and asking my Mom if I could stay up past my bedtime to watch it. She argued that it would surely play again, but I had the remote fastforwarding through next week’s schedule on the TV guide proving her wrong. She relented, and it is still the one Halloweentown memory I cherish.
As an adult, purchasing the Halloweentown trilogy (yes, trilogy) on DVD was a must. I was now free to watch them whenever I pleased, but I always waited for Halloween. Actually, I have ended up saving them to watch either on October 30th or 31st, which is way later than I ever watched them as a kid. And instead of watching them alone or with my family, I now watch them with my friends, who of course also grew up watching the movies as kids.
To sum it up, Halloweentown is Halloween. And it always will be.