Trick or retreating?


Mrs. AnneMarie Dufelmeier

St. Edward’s Trunk or Treat

Joseph Johnson and Sophia Tranchitella

A child walks alone throughout a neighborhood dressed as a carrot as he wonders if any of his friends will come out to trick-or-treat with him. Many have remarked that the tradition of trick-or-treating has been slowly fading away from American culture, with the Halloween of 2022 being heavily cited as evidence. With this decline, it is hard to find a conclusive answer to why this formerly loved and popular tradition is being removed from American culture.  

Theology teacher, Ms. Adams, claims that one of the reasons for this lies in families having concerns over COVID-19 and the flu, and being unavailable to trick or treat with their children due to their jobs. In addition, she brought up possibly the greatest reason for the decline in trick or treating, the rise of “Trunk-or-Treating”. Ms. Adams claims to like this form of sharing candy more than the traditional trick-or-treating most families have grown to love. This sentiment is echoed by English teacher, Mrs. Reed, who thought trunk or treating is a more family-friendly environment and claimed it is easier to attend than knocking at front doors.  

In addition to the fear of COVID-19 and the rise of trunk-or-treating, English teacher, Mrs. Schmidt, notes that there are significantly fewer children in some communities than when she was a child and went trick-or-treating. She pointed out that her neighborhood has a larger population of adults compared to children, something that Ms. Adams also expressed. Many of these neighborhoods simply do not have the children to sustain trick-or-treating, and therefore the adults do not bother to buy candy for any child who may come to their house in a costume.  

These three facets of the developing culture around Halloween have helped contribute to the decline in trick-or-treating. Parents fear their children catching a virus from this event and are not always available to bring their children trick or treating in the first place. Rather, they may prefer trunk-or-treating for its flexible timing and the friendly atmosphere that it offers, compared to taking candy from strangers. However, the largest reason may be that there are fewer children in neighborhoods than before. Perhaps, in the next few years, trick-or-treating will have its fate decided as these new cultural norms settle into place.