#TBT: What Does It Mean, Halloween?

Happy #TBT. To celebrate, we’re sharing an oldie-but-goodie post from Jim: What Does It Mean, Halloween?

RISE of the Jack O' Lanterns is a Halloween festival that happens in October at different venues across the U.S.

RISE of the Jack O’ Lanterns is a Halloween festival that happens in October at different venues across the U.S.

Wisenheimer that I am, I posted to my Facebook profile the following thing over the weekend [November 2, 2010]: “In the midst of all this commercialism and partying, let’s not forget the true meaning of Halloween: the birth of Satan.”

Which I mention because for a holiday for which there really is no “true meaning,” people sure do celebrate. I think in the past, it was a kid’s holiday, and now it’s very, very broad. Maybe it’s the coming of age of the Saturday morning cartoon generation (I’m looking at you, fellow Gen Xers). I even noticed an interesting trend of adults having nice dinners on their porches while handing out candy. On some streets, the lights and decorations are as elaborate and common as they are at Christmas.

Culturally, I believe something has shifted in the last five or 10 years about Halloween: It’s big. It looms large in the mind of Americans in a way that it didn’t before.

If I were a programmer for a venue or troupe or even the marketer for a sports team, I’d think about what this meant and what to do about it. If you’re a theater or performing arts venue, you should probably think about season-related programming.

I can’t tell you what Halloween means to your organization, but I can tell you it’s worth thinking about.

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