Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Happy Halloween

I have been traipsing the local high street for Halloween costumes and decorations, even food suitable for a Halloween party and mostly to no avail. There have been a few dodgy looking hairy spiders and some rubber bats that have seen better days but that is about the extent of it in usual chain stores.

I did find some rather scary looking costumes in Party Point in the old town, but with a two year old at our little Halloweenfeest, it has to be toned down a bit. Blood and guts are out, as are Scream masks and severed limbs. I did find him a little wizard's hat though, which he is delighted with. For the rest, I think there will be a lot of arts and crafts going on in our house in the next few days to get a Halloween feel for Saturday.

Halloween in the Netherlands is bigger than it was ten years ago, but it is certainly not 'celebrated' here like it is in the US. There is criticism about it being too commercial without any significant meaning and a signal of the Americanisation of Dutch society. There is also some stirrings in religious circles but whatever the critics say, popularity is increasing but more along the lines of parties and decorations, rather than children dressing up and knocking on doors for sweets.
Last year we saw a few trick-or-treaters who had made a real effort in our neighbourhood, but it really was only a handful. In some parts of the Netherlands, Sint-Maarten is celebrated later in November in a similar style to an American Halloween and it is a popular celebration in villages in Limburg, Groningen, Noord-Holland, Friesland and Drenthe and this overshadows any Halloween festivities.

However, witnessing the mad rush on Halloween costumes in Party Point at the weekend, lots of people, somewhere, are having parties. If you are joining them, or out trick or treating with your kids, I hope you have a fun and ghoulish night.

I would love to hear what you are planning for Halloween this year, and if it is something you celebrated back home. Or perhaps you get involved in the Sint-Maartenfeest on the 11 November?

No comments:

Post a Comment