How Was Your Halloween? Here's Ours.

Greetings from wacky West Asheville!  Do you remember your childhood Halloweens? I got to thinking about my own childhood Halloween experiences, as I was just leaving to take my daughter trick-or-treating.

I grew up West Asheville when it was still a small community, separate from the main city of Asheville. The city street I lived on was a traditional neighborhood with a wide street of different sized bungalow and arts and craft style homes situated close together. Back then, I won't say how far back, we all knew each others' kids and pets. It was the time most families were still one car families, so the streets weren't packed with vehicles like they are now. I walked or rode my bike to the main road at the end of the street to get something needed for my Mom and after school picked up my candy at the dime store. Located off the main street was a bakery, doughnut shop, rock shop, hardware store, library, and etc. The street is still lined today with maple trees that arch over to form a tunnel of great shade in the summer and is a showcase of Autumn beauty when the leaves turn from green to yellows, oranges and reds. And the fun part, as a kid, was walking or riding my bike through all those leaves in the fall.

When Halloween came, my Dad took me out trick-or-treating along our street. Naturally, as a kid, all I cared about was the candy, but it was great to see our neighbors as well as to get to compare costumes with the other kids in the neighborhood.  The elderly people on our street were so delighted to see how I'd grown from year to year. It's been a fond memory of mine as an adult, even remembering the years when it rained on Halloween night and walking through wet leaves to get that treasured candy!

Now, to the present, and young, new families have moved into the neighborhood and on our street, remodeling and updating the old bungalows of the 20's and 30's and creating a whole new vibe on a once dying street. These families go all out for Halloween, decorating like crazy and putting out tons of Halloween lights, graveyards in their front yards, skeletons and various other Halloween decorations to the max! They invite friends over to sit on their porches (yes, we still have porches in the South!), to watch what is about to happen that night.

About 6pm, cars and families, all dressed up in their Halloween costumes (including many parents), flood our street! Literally, thousands come. At times you can't walk on the sidewalks for all the people and you wind up walking the street. It's an event, our West Asheville Halloween night. We still get to see our new neighbors as well as the old and my daughter had the pleasure of seeing some of her classmates, while walking up and down the street. But most of the people are from other parts of the city or from the county areas. But we don't mind one night of crowds.  A police officer was there, watching the crowd and giving out stickers to the kids and the crowd was well behaved. One home gave out popcorn in little bags and showed a movie in their yard. We really enjoyed ourselves and are still amazed about how these homeowners knock themselves out, decking their homes and yards in Halloween decorations.  Here are some of our photos from this annual event.

First of all, my precious 6 yr. old daughter in her fairy costume that she designed herself.

Getting a bag of popcorn and do you see the white chairs set up for movie time?

Here we go, off to the next house!

Walking down the sidewalk, see the leaves and our lovely maples?

A neat jack-o-lantern with a scene of an owl on a bare tree branch in the light of a full moon. Hats off to that pumpkin carver!

Street packed with cars and people!

Look at this decorated yard!

The other side of the same yard!

Another house that goes all out with lights and decorations.

And the other side of their yard.

What were your childhood memories of Halloween? Or your present experiences with your kids or grand kids? Would love to hear them, Allison.


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