Halloween

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Most experts believe that the tradition of wearing costumes on Halloween originated in ancient days with the Celtic festival of Samhain, where participants lit fires and wore costumes to scare away ghosts.

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  • Who started Halloween?

    Q: Who started Halloween?

    A: The Celtic people started Samhain, the festival that eventually became known as Halloween, in the early days of the first millennium A.D. The festival celebrated the dead, whom the Celtics believed could join the living on that day.
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  • Which vegetable was originally used to carve jack-o-lanterns?

    Q: Which vegetable was originally used to carve jack-o-lanterns?

    A: The seasonal practice of carving a vegetable and putting a light inside originates in Ireland as part of Celtic tradition; because pumpkins do not occur naturally in this part of the world, the turnip was the vegetable that was originally used to carve jack-o-lanterns. Other root vegetables, including rutabagas, potatoes and beets, may also have been used to create these veggie lanterns, which used candles, burning coal or embers to create light and were intended as talismans to ward off evil spirits. Irish immigrants likely brought the practice to the United States, and exposure to the large, internally hollow and easily carved pumpkin started a new tradition of carving pumpkins instead of root vegetables.
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  • Why do people dress up for Halloween?

    Q: Why do people dress up for Halloween?

    A: The tradition of dressing up for Halloween most likely comes from the Medieval practices of "mumming" and "going a-souling," which historically took place on All Saints Day and All Souls Day. Mumming meant dressing up in costumes, singing, dancing, play-acting and making other general mischief. Souling meant going door to door offering prayers for the dead in exchange for treats. Current Halloween customs are an amalgamation of traditions from Celtic, various pagan and Roman traditions.
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  • How long do uncarved pumpkins last?

    Q: How long do uncarved pumpkins last?

    A: An uncarved pumpkin stays fresh for two to three months when stored at outdoor temperatures around 50 degrees Fahrenheit. At room temperature, a pumpkin starts to go bad after about a month.
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  • How early can you carve a pumpkin?

    Q: How early can you carve a pumpkin?

    A: According to DowningPumpkins.com, pumpkins should only be carved within a day of use. However, bleach and vegetable oil can extend the life of a carved pumpkin.
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  • When did Halloween become a national holiday?

    Q: When did Halloween become a national holiday?

    A: Halloween is not recognized as a federal or national holiday in the United States. However, the federal government does acknowledge it as a recognized American holiday.
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  • Why do people wear costumes on Halloween?

    Q: Why do people wear costumes on Halloween?

    A: Most experts believe that the tradition of wearing costumes on Halloween originated in ancient days with the Celtic festival of Samhain, where participants lit fires and wore costumes to scare away ghosts.
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  • How far in advance can you carve a pumpkin?

    Q: How far in advance can you carve a pumpkin?

    A: A pumpkin remains fresh and holds its color and shape well for only one or two days, and it stays in satisfactory condition for up to one week. Certain steps help prolong the life of a carved pumpkin.
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  • Why do we get candy on Halloween?

    Q: Why do we get candy on Halloween?

    A: Candy is traditionally given out on Halloween to children who dress up in costumes and go door-to-door asking for candy in a custom known as trick-or-treating. It is increasingly common for children to trick-or-treat in retail stores, or to receive candy at church or community carnivals.
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  • How do you apply makeup to look like a vampire?

    Q: How do you apply makeup to look like a vampire?

    A: To look like a vampire, it is necessary to apply white makeup to the entire face, red and black makeup around the lips and mouth, black and red makeup around the eyes and gray makeup around the cheekbones. A vampire makeup kit that contains all of the required colors and makeup applicators to create an authentic vampire look can be purchased for $5 to $10.
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  • Q: Where can you buy Freddy Krueger costumes?

    A: HalloweenCostumes.com and Spirit Halloween both sell Freddy Krueger costumes and accessories for adult men and women. HalloweenCostumes.com also has a costume available in child size. These are available for purchase year round.
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  • Q: Where can you find clever Halloween costume ideas?

    A: Find clever Halloween costume ideas by reading relevant articles on sites such as Refinery29.com and MentalFloss.com and monitoring what celebrities have worn in years past. Both methods provide inspiration for costumes that highlight your cleverness and innovation.
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  • What day is famous for trick-or-treating?

    Q: What day is famous for trick-or-treating?

    A: Halloween is famous for a number of activities, including trick-or-treating in costume. Along with many contemporary Halloween traditions, trick-or-treating has roots in the ancient pagan festival of Samhain, which took place annually on Oct. 31 in what is now the United Kingdom.
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  • What are some words that describe Halloween?

    Q: What are some words that describe Halloween?

    A: Halloween is a holiday that is described as spooky, haunting, supernatural, eerie, scary, fun, creepy and ghostly. The holiday was originally called All Hallows' Eve, and it marked the beginning of a three-day feast to honor dead Christian saints, also known as hallows.
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  • How was Halloween invented?

    Q: How was Halloween invented?

    A: Halloween, or All Hallows' Eve, comes from the ancient Celtic festival called Samhain and was invented because the Pagans felt that October 31 was the one day out of the year that the boundary between the living and the dead overlapped. They believed the dead would come back to earth and cause illness or damaged crops. At that time, people participating in the Samhain festival would wear costumes and masks in an attempt to mimic evil spirits.
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  • Q: What is fear of Halloween called?

    A: Having an intense fear of Halloween is termed samhainophobia. The term comes from the Celtic word "Samhain," which was a harvest ceremony in which some people wore costumes and masks. When someone is not abnormally fearful of Halloween, then he likely doesn't have this phobia but may just dislike Halloween in general, as noted by Forbes.
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  • Q: What are some decorating ideas for Halloween scarecrows?

    A: Ideas for decorating Halloween scarecrows include creating a scarecrow with a jack-o'-lantern head or a skull-like burlap head. You can also decorate a scarecrow to look like the Grim Reaper by adding a hooded cloak and a scythe, or a classic witch with a red wig, pointed witch hat and broomstick.
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  • Q: What is another name for Halloween?

    A: Another name for Halloween is All Hallows' Eve. All Hallows' Eve means the day before All Hallows Day, a Catholic holiday that is more commonly known as All Saints Day.
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  • Q: Where can you find a Deadpool costume for children?

    A: It is possible to purchase a Deadpool costume for children on Amazon.com and Herostime.com. The Deadpool costume on Amazon.com is a jumpsuit with a detachable hood. It is available in four sizes. As of September 2015, the price of the costume is $59, plus a shipping cost of $4.49.
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  • Q: How can a person make a "Flashdance" costume?

    A: To make a "Flashdance" costume, wear an oversized, long gray sweatshirt with an optional dancer's leotard. The neckline of the sweatshirt also needs to be cut to hang off the shoulder.
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  • Where can you find Halloween skeleton pictures for free?

    Q: Where can you find Halloween skeleton pictures for free?

    A: Free Halloween skeleton pictures are available on Photobucket.com and Webweaver.nu's Free Clipart. A large printable picture of a Halloween skeleton is available for free at GamesCraftsColoring.com. Free printable pictures of Halloween skeletons, designed for kids to color, are available at BestColoringPagesforKids.com and HelloKids.com.
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