I deal in hope : Carolyn R Scheidies

Blog Scaring up memories of fun Halloweens

Though this Halloween was very different from other Halloween celebrations, it brought back memories of other times in my life when the holiday was different. When I was a child, Halloween wasn’t a big thing. Stores didn’t carry costumes. Parents and kids made their own. Mine was easy–torn pants, sloppy shirt, a long stick with a bandana pouch tied to it, and I became a hobo. My friends and I each brought a bag and went house to house for candy. (Then my folks rationed our haul, so we didn’t eat it all at once.)

By the time our children were ready to Trick or Treat, Halloween had become a much bigger celebration and much more dark. It had also become less safe. Razor blades were found in apples and other treats were doctored in cruel ways. Parents were told to only take their children to homes of those they knew. Bryant school decided to hold their own Halloween celebration. A college student friend went with Chris and I dealt with Cassie. The kids had a good time and still brought home treats.

Then a person from a large Kearney church conceived of a way to provide fun and food in a safe and positive environment. She and others from the church contacted other churches and formed a committee to plan what became Bibleland Carnival that became THE place to go on Halloween. The concept was to come in a character from the Bible. This opened costumes up to animals, characters—and not all Bible characters are good characters.

Different booths had a variety of delicious food. There were bounce houses, huge slides, all types of games, including a cakewalk and actual pony and horse rides. For years, our family assisted at Bibleland Carnival. Of course, we made sure the kids, and whatever friend they brought with them, had time to eat and play games. One year I took tickets for the pony rides by an open side door. (Brr.) I had a stool so I could rest when needed. It was metal with an open center.

That year Cassie kept doing the Cakewalk. She ended up with five cakes we stored stacked up under my stool. Later we gave most of them away. The yearly Bibleland lasted long after Chris and Cassie left home for college and work, and Chris married. One year, Chris and his wife brought their three littles to enjoy the carnival. Another generation of memories. Without kids at home, we returned to sitting by the front door and offering treats to the kids who came to the door. By then, also, we attended a church in the area and knew a lot of the kids. Besides candy, I tried to offer little toys, pens, etc. But even this next generation of kids grew up and the nearby neighborhood aged. Finally, with almost no one coming to the door, we stopped buying treats to give out to nonexistent Trick or Treaters.

It is sad with the circumstances this year, most parents chose to keep kids at home. I have memories, my children and grandchildren have memories of Halloween. Our daughter took her two little ones to a park. A lady who was giving out treats, gave them each a treat bag. I’m glad our youngest grandkids will have good memories of the day. However, next year, I hope we can celebrate in a safe, positive way—and with kids going house to house, filling their bags with treats.

© 2020 Carolyn R Scheidies

Published in Kearney Hub 11/16/2020

Feel free to share

rss | Email list | blog | Poetry | Devotions | Politics | Books | About