How Halloween will be Celebrated
Brooklyn Jones | Maui High School, Class of 2022Picture the Halloween of years past: kids running up and down the street, on the hunt for candy, parties with peoples’ cars spilling out of the driveway. Public malls keeping their stores open a little later, offering Halloween-themed activities to shoppers. It’s the time to enjoy a weird holiday with family and friends—unless you are the “celebrate in solitude” type.
With the COVID-19 pandemic, regulations have changed, affecting the practicality of gatherings. Distanced education, sports practices and church services were some outside-the-box solutions to limited group numbers. But how will Halloween, a holiday centered around interaction, play out?
The current pandemic situation is much less dire than last year; people appear to be more willing to meet now more information on the virus is readily available and distributed vaccines. While most agree precautions need to continue to be taken, changing Halloween plans does not mean less fun! If anything, choosing a smaller “circle” to spend your holiday with can ensure quality time with your closest friends and family members.
Compared to years before, Dillon Gunderson‘s Halloween plans have definitely changed for the upcoming holiday. He and his family would throw a costume party with family and friends each year, something many looked forward to before the pandemic. “With COVID going around, I am very sure we’re not going to be having a party or going trick or treating,” he admits. This reality has disheartened many but the Maui High Junior keeps a positive outlook on this unique situation. COVID has presented a set of problems but with it, a chance to reinvent parts of our lives. “This can give us a chance to find new traditions for Halloween and a chance to create new memories.”
Themed games and activities can come and go but one critical custom for Halloween is dressing up. I believe everyone can go all out in costumes on Halloween, regardless of age. Samantha Joyce Della, a senior at Maui High School, agrees. “I dress up every year. People may think that ‘you’re too old to be doing this’ but I just brush it aside because I enjoy celebrating holidays,” Samantha explains. Halloween is a great holiday because it gives people a break from being serious; mundane things like wearing costumes and eating candy shouldn’t be restricted if it offers joy to people of all ages. Some aspects of Halloween, however, needed to be placed on hold, at least for now. Samantha mentions, like many others, her family would go trick-or-treating together but got a shock last Halloween: “Last year, almost every house had lights out!” She described it as both “surpris[ing], but at the same time, expected.”
Altene Jacob Tumacder doesn’t consider Halloween a hugely important holiday in his household but enjoys it all the same. While not having any traditions for October 31st, he still loves being “surrounded by family and friends, constantly being entertained by the immense variety of costumes each year!” For his costume, Altene says he’ll do what he does best: procrastinate. He is interested in dressing up as a Netflix character and usually puts on unique and entertaining costumes for his family during their parties. His plans will include a safe family gathering this year too but without any trick or treating. “It is a sad reality and I wish we could celebrate otherwise but I have kept the mindset that we must move forward,” Altene remarks. “We must adapt and cooperate in order to return to the normal that we know!”
For those who are quarantining or want to remain extra cautious this year, Katelen Gicale-Emden has a few suggestions: “have a Halloween movie marathon, carve pumpkins, bake Halloween treats or have a photoshoot in your costume.” She specifically recommends the Halloween sugar cookies (Pillsbury brand) for the baking project. Although Kate enjoys inside Halloween activities, she plans to spend the special night on Front Street with her friends and boyfriend. Front Street is a beautiful place to go on a special night; the view of the ocean and slightly cool fall breeze will be a great setting to make new memories.
Whether expecting to stay in or go out, it is sure to be a good time if you are with your favorite people. Everyone has had a bit of a rough go of it this year, so use Halloween as a day to de-stress and have a good time. Remember to stay safe out there and have a happy Halloween!
Google® Is Not Everything … is a monthly column authored by high school students. The title of the column emphasizes education is more than just googling a topic. Google® is a registered trademark. This month’s guest columnist is Brooklyn Jones, a Senior at Maui High School. She is an assistant editor in her school’s journalism program, Saber Scribes, and also a member of the Girls Can STEM Club. Brooklyn is in the ACOM Pathway at Maui High, specializing in graphic design. In her free time, she swims for Hawai‘i Swimming Club, bakes and likes to go to the beach. She is the daughter of Melissa Ligot Jones and Darren Jones.