Saturday Halloween movement urges President Trump to move holiday's date

A reveler gets his picture taken by a friend in front of heavily armed police during the Greenwich Village Halloween Parade in New York. The NYPD says thousands of uniformed and plainclothes officers will patrol the 2018 parade in Greenwich Village. They'll be joined by counterterrorism units, police dogs and helicopters. [Associated Press]
A reveler gets his picture taken by a friend in front of heavily armed police during the Greenwich Village Halloween Parade in New York. The NYPD says thousands of uniformed and plainclothes officers will patrol the 2018 parade in Greenwich Village. They'll be joined by counterterrorism units, police dogs and helicopters. [Associated Press]
Published October 31 2018

A Halloween advocacy group has started an online petition urging President Donald Trump to move Halloween from Oct. 31 to the last Saturday of the month.

The change.org petition had nearly 40,000 signatures Wednesday morning. It was started by the Halloween & Costume Association, which claims moving the holiday to Saturday would create a safer, more convenient environment for children and allow for better parties.

"It gives children and parents alike time to enjoy Halloween without rushing, taking time off work to spend the evening with their children, and takes away the stigma of what some people think the holiday is really about and just makes it a really fun day," supporter Carolyn Boutin wrote on the site.

Recent years have seen a growing number of "trunk or treat" events held various days throughout the month to offer safer alternatives to the traditional neighborhood-roaming trick or treating.

Moving the date of the actual holiday could, however, run afoul with the its religious roots and the name itself.

The word Halloween comes from Hallowe'en, a Scottish term for All Hallows' Eve, the evening before All Hallows Day, also known as All Saints Day and is a part of the three-day Allhallowtide. All Saints Day is believed to have been set to Nov. 1 by Pope Gregory IV in the eighth century to coincide with the Celtic festival Samhain, a festival marking the change in seasons when Pagans believed doorways between the world of the living and the world of the dead were open.

Following early Catholic traditions, All Saints Day was preceded with a feast the day before, similar to Christmas Eve and Easter celebrations, thus Halloween was established as Oct. 31. A day apparently too inconvenient for 40,000-some-odd internetters and growing.

Contact Daniel Figueroa IV at d[email protected] Follow @danuscripts.

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