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The Daily Utah Chronicle

The University of Utah's Independent Student Voice

The Daily Utah Chronicle

The University of Utah's Independent Student Voice

The Daily Utah Chronicle

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Want your voice to be heard? Submit a letter to the editor, send us an op-ed pitch or check out our open positions for the chance to be published by the Daily Utah Chronicle.

Recollections of Halloweens Gone By: Making the Most of Halloween at Any Age

By April Heiselt

If you are like me, you stopped trick-or-treating (I mean for real) a long time ago. So what is Halloween for you now? What is it all about? If you can’t get candy, what more is there?

There is a lot more. Just because you aren’t 7 years old, or you’re married, or you have kids, doesn’t mean that Halloween ends. In fact, it brings an entirely new dimension to Halloween.

I remember one Halloween where my husband and I got invited to a costume party. We had to come up with some type of costume for a couple. We didn’t have to be double popsicles or anything, but our costumes had to somehow go together.

That started the thinking process. What were we going to dress up as?

After a while, it became apparent that although I loved my husband and he loved me, we couldn’t agree on a Halloween costume (that we both liked) to save our lives.

Finally, we were in a bookstore one day and I noticed the Alice in Wonderland display. I asked him if he wanted to go as two characters from Alice in Wonderland (no, before you say it, we weren’t Tweedledee and Tweedledum). He thought that Alice in Wonderland was a great idea.

Then I told him that I wanted to be the white rabbit and that he would have to be Alice. He didn’t easily agree to that part, but over time, he warmed to the idea (OK, he gave in?we were newlyweds after all).

The night of the party came, and my husband looked stunning in his blond wig and black patent leather shoes. Yet, when we arrived at the party, things weren’t what we thought they would be.

It turned out that we had now entered a road rally. We were separated into teams, given a list of clues and had to be back at a given time.

Not being someone who had ever done a road rally before, I thought it would be cool. So I jumped in the car with Tarzan, a cowboy, a priest and the Little Mermaid, and we took off.

We spent the entire night zooming (there was a rule that we had to follow the speed limit?yeah right) around town.

We had to roll out toilet paper and count the squares from one place to another. We had to count out the bricks on the fountain next to the biggest movie theater in town. We had to find out the price of Tickle Me Elmo at Toys R Us. And we did it all with people staring and laughing at us.

We did a lot of things that night that I probably won’t do again, but I’ll tell you, that was one of the best Halloweens ever.

It was great because I realized that you don’t have to be a kid to enjoy Halloween, and that the fun on Oct. 31 doesn’t have to end when you enter the sixth grade.

Some time has passed since that night?now I have two children and they enhance my memories of Halloweens gone by.

I will always remember the night we took my two-year-old daughter to her first house to trick-or-treat.

She took my hand and I walked her to the door. Then she said those magic words “trick-or-treat,” and the man dropped some M&Ms into her plastic pumpkin.

Suddenly, she dropped my hand and ran to my husband who was standing a few feet away.

“Daddy, daddy, that man gave me candy,” she said. My husband and I laughed as our daughter couldn’t wait to get to the next house.

Then there was the Halloween that we let our daughter hold her candy in the back seat. I don’t know what happened, but by the time we had gotten to the corner, I smelled chocolate.

We turned on the inside car light, and there she was?our little bunny, now the chocolate version. She was covered in chocolate from her bunny ears (we still don’t know how she managed that) to her bunny tummy. We laughed as she happily continued to eat the candy?and the paper!

Last year was also a great Halloween. My husband and I couldn’t decide on a costume for our son (sound familiar?) so, when our daughter wanted to be Dorothy from the Wizard of Oz, we thought a lion would be most appropriate for our little guy.

As 6 p.m. rolled around, we started to get our kids ready to go trick-or-treating. When I went to get my son from his room, I found my little lion all curled up in his costume fast asleep.

That year our son didn’t go trick or treating, but it was a memory I will have forever.

This year, my son will actually get to wear his lion costume outside of the house, and my daughter is actually going to wear the leopard costume that her dad wore when he was a 4-year-old. They will enjoy Halloween, and I will enjoy it through them.

So Halloween doesn’t have to end, no matter what stage in life you are in. If you are a single parent, go to one of the children’s parties or throw one of your own.

If you’re married or dating, take your special someone to a corn maize or to one of the many haunted houses here in Utah. If possible, hit up a Halloween party.

And if you do have children?whether they’re your own or just related to you?take them by the hand and enjoy Halloween through their eyes. You will see things you never knew were there.

April welcomes feedback at: [email protected]

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