Sunday, August 30, 2009

Halloween Dominion 2009



Help support Halloween Dominion 2009! Our celebration this year is Dia de los Muertos, a Hispanic celebration of life and death... with a twist! We're also partnering with Costumes for Kids, a great Halloween Charity! Costume for Kids helps bring new or used Halloween costumes to disabled children, to bring them the Halloween they deserve!

Sunday, August 23, 2009

Planning for Halloween 2009

Home Haunting Prep

video

The Hauntrepreneur's garage!

History of Halloween Part 2 (1880s-1930s) The Golden Age



In the 1880s, immigrants from Europe brought their Halloween customs and traditions to the states. The first celebrations were considered "play parties" and public harvest events held in New England. The Potato Famine of 1846 brought many more immigrants, especially Irish immigrants, and helped bring Halloween celebration to the national stage. The American Halloween tradition of going door to door asking for money or food later became known as "trick or treating", a tradition that is practiced today. By the late 1880s, Halloween was more about community and neighborhood socials than about ghosts, ghouls and witchcraft. Diane C. Arkins, author of Halloween Merrymaking, describes this period as the "Golden Age" of Halloween. Arkins describes the traditional Halloween gatherings as " fun, food, and frolics served with a side of mild-manner seasonal frights." Parties during this time focused more on stylistic costumes rather than gory, bloody or horrifying costumes. Even the old Celtic beliefs of fortune telling became more of a game rather than actual future predictions. Arkins describes a popular game involving cleaning out walnut shells, filling them with a paper fortune and having guest chant "Elf that haunts the walnut tree, what has fate in store for me?" Modern Halloween traditions that originated from the Golden Age, include:
  • Parties and social gatherings
  • Invitations
  • Halloween theme food
  • Halloween theme games and decorations
  • Pumpkin carving
Pumpkin carving is an Irish-American tradition most associated with Halloween.
The story of the Jack-O'Lantern has its start from the story of Stingy Jack. Neither allowed in Heaven nor wanted by Hell, the soul of Jack travels the world with only a burning coal to guide him. The Irish called him, "Jack of the Lantern" which in turn became "Jack O'Lantern." To keep bad spirits and Stingy Jack away, people carved faces into turnips and potatoes, placed a candle inside and set them on their windowsills. The pumpkin, a native American fruit later replaced the turnip and potato of Ireland.
References
Arkins, Diane C. (2004) Halloween Merrymaking, an illustrated celebration of fun, food, and frolics from halloweens past
Pelican Publishing Company, Inc., Gretna, Louisiana
Halloween Pictures (2009) Wikimedia Commons. Retrieved on August 23rd, 2009 from: http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/
History (2008) The Real Story of Halloween. History.com. A & E Television Networks.
Retrieved on August 23, 2009 from: http://www.history.com/content/halloween

History of Halloween Part 1 (1 A.D.-800 A.D.) Birth of Halloween


Over 2,000 years ago, the Celtics lived in the lands of modern day Ireland, United Kingdom and France. During the month of October, the Celtic tribes celebrated Samhain (sow-in) which represents the end of summer and the beginning of the harsh winter. On October 31st, the Celtics believed that mischievous spirits of the dead returned to earth. They believed during this time that it was possible for the living to predict the future. Crop and animal sacrifices were offered up to the Celtic deities, while tribe members dressed in costumes made of animal skins.
By A.D. 43 the Roman Empire had conquered the Celtic territory. The cultural blending of both Roman and Celtic traditions and celebrations began. Feralia a commemoration of the dead and Pomona the celebration of the Roman goddess of fruit and trees merged with Samhain.
Pomona's Roman symbol was an apple, which the modern day game of bobbing for apples may have originated from.
By A.D. 800, Pope Boniface IV declared November 1st as All Saints Day, a day to honor saints and martyrs. Many believe that this was the pope's attempt to replace Samhain with a Church sanctioned holiday. All Saints Day was later called All Hallows or All Hallowas, and over time Samhain was to be known as All-Hallows Eve.
Today, we call this day Halloween. In A.D. 1000 the Church declared November 2nd as All Soul's Day a time to honor the dead. This celebration was marked with bonfires, parades and dressing in costumes to represent saints, angels and demons, similar to Samhain over a thousand years earlier.

References
History (2008) The Real Story of Halloween. History.com. A & E Television Networks.
Retrieved on August 23, 2009 from: http://www.history.com/content/halloween
Bonfire Picture (2003) Janne Karaste. Wikimedia Commons. Retrieved on August 23rd, 2009 from:

Thursday, August 20, 2009

Welcome to my new Halloween blog!

Welcome to my Halloween Blog! Since 1989 I have been home haunting every year in October. On the 20th anniversary of my first haunt, I have decide to move to the next level. This year, together with an amazing team we're redefining what a Halloween dark attraction can be. Not only can a Halloween Dark Attraction entertain people, but it can also be a responsible part of the community.
Along with our creative team, we've launched Halloween Dominion a new model of Halloween business. We're deep in to the pre-production process, and business building.
I hope to bring insights from the local Halloween community, industry and other business related interests.

Happy Haunting...