Lockport Union-Sun & Journal Online

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October 30, 2013

Halloween brings back fond memories of the old days

Lockport Union-Sun & Journal — Growing up as a kid in Buffalo, I have fond memories of Halloween. Back in the 1950s, the night before Halloween was called Beggars Night, and that’s when we would go out to Trick or Treat. On Halloween, we would have fun parties where we enjoyed bobbing for apples and other silly games. In those days, before things had to be store-bought and individually wrapped for protection, we got things like homemade popcorn balls, decorated cut-out cookies, fresh apples, Hershey’s cocoa fudge and cups of cider and donuts from houses on our street.

We stopped and chatted with neighbors along the way, spinning around to show off the costumes largely made with imagination and leftovers from Mom’s sewing basket. The first purchased costume I ever had was a walking ham and cheese sandwich, with a jar of mustard mask! My favorite will always be the Glinda, the Good Witch costume Mom made from an old lace tablecloth dyed pink. I won a doll at Ampol Eagle as a prize, and it was a treasure. We all knew each other in those days, and it was a wonderful shared experience. Nostalgia makes me sad to see carloads of kids dropped off on more populated streets for the dash and grab for candy from strangers, and the loss of the magic that was Halloween when we were kids decades ago. Kudos to the local organizations, church groups, etc., that hold events to try to make Halloween more than just a crush for candy for today’s spooks and spacemen.

Trick-or-Treating in Somerset takes place from 5 to 7 p.m. Thursday. Kids through fifth grade are invited to the Lions Club/Optimist Club costume parade at 7 p.m. in the Pratt Elementary School cafetorium. The Lions will provide cider and donuts.

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