The last three moths of the year for the United States anyway is the beginning of fall festivities. Its like partying in Celtic and Roman times when a festival would last weeks or months. Well, Halloween, originally a pagan holiday believed to be a portal for the dead is the first holiday of the fall winter season. Most people believed that Halloween or Hallow’s eve denoting the end of summer, was a supernatural time when the dead would once a year return to the earth to cause havoc.
There are many forums and websites that either support or are against Halloween as a holiday. If you look at the history it says Halloween marks the closing of summer as November 1 celebrated on the eve, October 31. So, then the opening of the summer is May 1. The pagan holiday names for the opening and closing of summer growth and harvesting of crops for purpose of a prosperous life are Beltane, May 1, and Samhein pronounced sah-ween, November 1.
Pagans and Christians go back and forth on how to celebrate Halloween in accordance with the tradition of the community. Currently, its seen as a day for kids to dress up, dance and eat candy. Some women believed they could get the name of their future husband by performing tricks with apples, strings and mirrors, witchcraft. Catholics held it as a day to honor the deceased saints, commonly called all saints day. Traditional Christians believe it is a day to worship Satan and therefore do not celebrate the day. Instead, traditional Christians will resolve to gather, pray and eat dinner providing alternatives for its youth and adult members.
No matter what is believed for the celebration of Halloween or not, do it safely. For example, avoid using fire lit candles. If you must use candles then keep all debris and materials away from the candles. If putting up lights then look for lights that are fire resistant with the UL standard for safety. Also, if you are wearing a costume then, look for those that are fire retardant. Avoid costumes with lots of frills and flammable materials like netting and chiffon’s. Parents, if letting children go door to door to trick or treat then check all candies and do not let children eat open treats.
The city of Chicago Park Districts Halloween celebrations begin at 4 p.m. on October 31, 2013. The park districts Halloween events vary throughout the month of October. Other events in Chicagoland area are the Sycamore Pumpkin Festival, Sycamore Pumpkin Festival – Sycamore, IL – October 23-27, 2013
Chicago International Film Festival – Chicago, IL – October 10-24, 2013
Deep Blue Innovators Blues Festival – Monmouth, IL – October 26, 2013
Oak Lawn Pumpkin Fest – Oak Lawn, IL – October 19, 2013
Boone County Harvest Festival – Belvidere, IL – October 5, 2013
Oglesby Harvest Festival – Oglesby, IL – October 8, 2013
Spring Valley Autumn Harvest Festival – Schaumberg, IL – October 6, 2013
Health Harvest Festival – Robinson, IL – October 4, 2013
Scarecrow Festival – St. Charles, Illinois – October 11-13, 2013
Annual Jersey County Apple Festival – Jerseyville, Illinois – October 5, 2013
Northern Illinois Conservation Club Harvest Festival – Antioch, IL – October 13, 2013
Highwood Pumpkin Festival – Highwood, IL – October 17-19, 2013
Additional options with dates to be determined are: Cultivate Festival
Loyola Harvest Festival
Southern Illinois Harvest Festival – Mt Vernon, IL
Cortland Fall Festival and Parade – Cortland, IL
Westmont Fall Harvest Fest – Westmont, IL
Sherrard Pumpkin Fest – Sherrard, IL – Last Year’s Date: September 29, 2012
Havana Wine Festival – Havana, IL – Last Year’s Date: October 13, 2012
Royster with the Oyster Festival – Chicago, IL – Last Year’s Date: October 12, 2012
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