1976 Halloween

Yep, that's me being the first home computer

It’s been a looong time since I’ve gone trick-or-treating myself, and I sometimes am sad that today’s kids don’t get to know and enjoy the Halloween of my youth.  I’m talking homemade costumes, family decorated yards (some to invite and others to scare the bejesus out of you), brown paper sacks filled with candy, and caramel apples and popcorn balls that your mother would actually let you eat.

My brothers and I, along with our friends, would spend weeks divining our homemade costumes and plotting our attack on the “good neighborhood” where you might get a full-size candy bar or a roll of pennies.  The boys would map out the scary houses they had to ‘hit’ while I tried to convince Dad that the dog really DID need a costume and to go with us.

We live in times with more real things to fear and today’s kids don’t have the luxury of the safety we, and our parents, felt as we roamed town long after the sun went down and largely unsupervised.  So long as we made it to certain houses in a reasonable time, so moms could keep track of their kids general whereabouts, we didn’t have much to worry about.

This year I saw the Halloween of my childhood reborn in Ilwaco.  It’s been growing for several years now; I first learned about it as the number of trick-or-treaters declined in my neighborhood and I wondered aloud where they were going.  The era of the “good neighborhood” has returned!  In fact, it’s even better – the grown ups are just as into dressing up as the kids!

Take a click over to Jake the Alligator Man’s blog, where you’ll find an array of photos that capture the spirit of Ilwaco this All Hallow’s Eve.  And don’t miss the headless horseman in Chinook.  Who WAS that, anyway?

Here are a few from the Facebook friends of Kara Funbeach, including David Poulshock, Discover Ilwaco, Diana Williams, Flora Gardener & Jenna Nisbett: