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Halloween in Australia

October 21, 2009

I’ve always loved the idea of Halloween. Dressing up in cool costumes, going trick-or-treating, going to massive parties and playing games with ‘body part’ food…Like many of my generation I grew up on American TV shows like Sabrina the Teenage Witch which always made Halloween look like the most fun ever. The Halloween episodes are always so cool, like the episode of Buffy where they all turn into their costumes. The only problem? I don’t live in America. I live in Australia, and we don’t exactly celebrate Halloween.

I’ll never forget the year I was in grade 5 and a friend invited me trick-or-treating. I was so excited, but when I told my parents my dad wouldn’t let me go. ‘Halloween is an American holiday’ he said, ‘and all it does here is annoy people’. It was one of the saddest moments of my childhood. That night I stayed home upset because I couldn’t go. I now realise it probably wouldn’t have been that fun anyway. It’s not like we prepare for Halloween. When trick-or-treaters come to my house they always end up getting crap like rice crackers because that’s all we have.

Anyway I did get my chance to go trick-or-treating. One year I was in America on Halloween and it was amazing. Everyone dressed up, from babies to grandparents. Houses were decorated in carved out pumpkins and inflatable ghosts. Cool lighting was everwhere. There were hundreds of kids racing around the streets with pillow cases waiting to be filled with candy. It was the single coolest holiday ever.

Every year people claim Halloween is ‘getting big’ in Australia. It isn’t. Anyone who’s ever lived through an American Halloween knows ours are non-existant in comparison.

This year I feel like celebrating Halloween in a big way again. Though there are some parties and themed club nights around, a part of me is depressed because I know nothing will ever be as cool or as well-done as it is in America. Australia can try, but we really don’t know how to Halloween.

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