Thursday, October 11, 2012

Halloween - it's not just window dressing

Is it my imagination or is Halloween starting earlier every year? Seems to me that there are more temporary Halloween-related costume stores popping up in strip malls, indicating that this is still a growing market. Still, it is a fun holiday and one that is lucrative for the industry.

According to statistics on the site, there are 41 million potential trick-or-treaters accross the U.S.
- 85.78 million households will give out candy and other goodies
- would you believe that pet-owners shelled out $310 million dollars for pet outfits, $1 billion dollars on kids costumes and $1.21 billion in the adult costume sector.

According to the National Retail Federation, spending on Halloween costumes for pooches, and occasionally cats, is expected to hit a record $370 million this year, up nearly 20 percent from last year. Just as far as outfits for pets are concerned, do owners ask their pets what if any, costumes they prefer? Maybe they would prefer to go "as is." True dressed up dogs and cats are cute but then they (dogs and cats, iguanas, et al) don't particularly look like they're enjoying the experience. Wonder how snakes take to being in costume...or turtles...or bats for example...

Click through this collection of pictures of pets dressed in their Halloween finest and decide if they look happy. But I digress.

Fact-ually-speaking, the best city for walking and trick-or-treating according to Prevention magazine, is San Francisco, while the safest city according to Forbes, is Plano, Texas.

Once the tricking or treating is over, it's time to eat all those goodies, which are not so good health-wise but readers already know that. Right?

- the average American eats 1.2 pounds of Halloween candy. No indication if this includes dentists - just a thought.

Horror films are in during the bewitching season. The five highest grossing Halloween or horror films/franchises of all time are:
"Saw" - $415.9 million, "Friday the 13th" - $380.6 million, "A Nightmare on Elm Street" - $370.5 million, "Scream" - $332.7 million, "Halloween" - $308.5.

I'm a big fan of "Rocky Horror Picture Show", the movie, but never attended a Halloween midnight showing featuring attendees getting into the picture.

According to, the most popular Halloween songs as compiled by plays on radio (2010) were and coming in at #1, no surprise, is "Thriller" by Michael Jackson (one of my favorites), "Monster Mash" by Bobby 'Boris' Picket and the Crypt Kickers (try saying that fast after a few drinks), "Ghostbusters" by Ray Parker, Jr, "Werewolves of London" by Warren Zevon, "Highway to Hell" by AC/DC, "A Nightmare on My Street" by D.J. Jazzy Jeff and the Fresh Prince, "Don't Fear the Reaper" by Blue Oyster Cult, "Somebody's Watching Me" by Rockwell, "Running With the Devil" by Van Halen, "Witchy Woman" by the Eagles.                                                                                

For a few laughs at people and pets celebrating the holiday in their own unique way, take a look at this Halloween compilation from America's Funniest Videos

Finally, in as far as growing and producing the biggest pumpkin, Ron Wallace of Greene, Rhode Island, grew an orange monster that weighed in at 2,009 pounds, making it the largest pumpkin in history and in addition, the largest fruit ever grown in the world. The pumpkin was weighed in at the Topsfield Fair in Topsfield, MA last week. Wonder how many pumpkin pies one could make from that...

So what are you and your pet as the case may be, planning to dress up as for Halloween?

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