What you didn't know about Halloween

Whether it’s breaking out the bags of candy or getting scared senseless, many are getting ready for the scariest night of the year —Halloween!

However, with all the traditions to celebrate, there may be a few things you’re missing out on during this spooky season.

Here are a few interesting facts that you might not know about this famous holiday:

  1. Jack-o’-lanterns weren’t always pumpkins: A long time ago, we used turnips. Starting in Ireland, people hollowed out the insides of these vegetables and used them to ward off spirits and ghosts. These days, pumpkins are more popular and are used worldwide to carve out the faces of the famous jack-o’-lantern.

    A jack-o-lantern is perched atop a pillar at a Haunted House. (Source: Mindy Schauer/Orange County Register/MCT)
  1. There’s a Halloween phobia: Afraid of getting scared? Well, there’s a name for that and it’s samhainophobia. This phobia is the powerful fear of Halloween. For some people, the fear of Halloween can be based on other specific phobias like phasmophobia, which is the fear of ghosts, and coimetrophobia, which is the fear of cemeteries.
  1. People love to party on Halloween: Coming second only to Christmas, Halloween is one of the most popular holidays across the globe. The most common cities to celebrate Halloween include Salem, Massachusetts and New Orleans, Louisiana. These major Halloween hotspots draw in thousands of tourists each year. In fact, New Orleans holds the world record for the largest Halloween party, with over 17,000 participants.
  1. Everybody loves candy: This one is obvious. With trick-or-treating being the main highlight of this holiday, candy is at the core of Halloween. However, did you know that candy sales average about $2 billion around this time? Among all this candy, chocolate tops the list as the most popular Halloween treat.

    Two children enjoy the candy after a night of Halloween trick-or-treating. (Source: Emmet Malmstrom/Family Fun Magazine/MCT)
  1. Halloween is a billion-dollar industry: With all the money just spent on candy, Halloween is the highest-grossing holiday behind Christmas. What used to be a modest holiday has become an expensive “holiday season.” With intricate decorations and costly costumes, Americans spend an estimated $6 billion just on Halloween.

Whether you’re afraid of Halloween or spend your entire life savings on it, remember there is something for everyone to enjoy about this holiday.