Halloween today means elaborate costumes, expensive decorations, and enough candy to last a century. It's also filled with parents worrying about their kids going to a stranger's house and taking candy, all of which is carefully inspected for puncture holes and open wrappers.
But what was it like in the 1960s? Surely things have changed since then.
We rarely make our own costumes anymore.
Remember when you had to use random things from around the house for your costume? If being a pirate meant using medical gauze as an eye patch and black eyeliner as a goatee, then so be it. In the 60s, most costumes were handmade and they were often repetitive: witch, pirate, clown, cowboy. There were no elaborate store-bought costumes. You used what you had, and that was fine.
Our 'treats' were often homemade.
Sure, mini chocolate bars are fine. But caramel apples, sticky popcorn balls, and wrapped homemade cookies are the stuff dreams are made of. Homemade treats wouldn't fly today. But in the 60s? That was the jackpot.
We actually had to do tricks for our treats.
None of this automatic candy stuff. If we wanted treats, we had to work for it. Knock knock jokes, riddles, handstands. Whatever it took to get that extra nickle candy.
Parents didn't come with us,
They might have been down the street, sure. But we didn't need parental supervision to go door-to-door. It was so much more relaxed then! No worries about stranger-danger. You went out, got your candy, and came back home. Often times hiding the best candy in your pockets so mom and dad couldn't sneak it while you were sleeping.
We often got invited in for cider and cookies.
We knew most people on our street. So it wasn't uncommon for a friend's mom to invite you in for cookies and something warm to drink. It was a fun way to spend an evening, gathering with friends and eating treats.
Decorations were basic, but spooky.
We used bed sheets in trees, window clings, and scary posters as our decorations. None of these electronic skeletons or motion censored screams. The closest thing we had to motion censors was our dad or brother in the bushes waiting to jump out. Again, often homemade, our decorations were meant to celebrate not scare. Often times families would decorate for autumn rather than Halloween.
Did you grow up in the 60s? What were some of your favorite Halloween traditions? Let us know in the comments!