Wednesday, October 12, 2016

Vanishing Halloween?

Nobody can say this household didn't go all out in creating a Halloween display, but there seem to be fewer such spectacles going up this year. 
A full-size coffin on a doorstep is perhaps taking the Halloween theme a bit far. But this household decorated the rest of their yard too, so they're taking it as seriously as the jolly-themed people above. 

Simple, but effective. A skeleton dancing off a bush.

For as long as I've been in Vancouver, Halloween has been the ever-expanding celebration. More and more houses decorated earlier and earlier with graveyard scenes, white garbage bags shaped as witches, and cobwebby gauze of all colours draped over hedges. Pumpkins are popular, but not nearly enough -- there are strings of skull lights, big puffy air-filled decorations on front lawns, and "Danger, do not cross" yellow tape crisscrossing pathways. Why the excitement? I always speculated it was because the wide diversity of people who now live in Vancouver don't necessarily want to get behind Christmas, so turned to Halloween as their blow-out celebration.

But this year . . . the oomph seems to be gone. Nearly halfway through the month, there are fewer displays than usual, and those that exist seem a little, well, deflated. I wonder whether the cumulative effects of the last decade of real-estate madness are showing -- so many houses are empty now, and none of those houses have little trick-or-treaters eagerly awaiting the big day. As a non-parent, Halloween has never been a big issue for me, but as a walker, I'm always interested in signs of what's happening in the community. I look forward to seeing what transpires this year -- is the ever-expanding celebration about to become, heh, a ghost of itself?

A cardboard portrayal of a pumpkin gets the idea across without all the mess and fuss of  a real pumpkin. Set in this well-landscaped garden, it is simple and strangely effective.

Oh now, this is tacky! A ghost-like figure -- what's with the tie? -- is popping out of a transparent air-filled globe containing a black cat and a pumpkin. This is in the same garden as the big orange pumpkin above, and the two displays below. I hope whoever did up this garden has lots of appreciative children around. 

An air-filled pumpkin with ghosts popping out of the top and out of the eye-holes. 

A witch by the front walk is supposed to be menacing in a child-friendly kind of way.

Much more menacing: In another garden, two translucent skeletons hang off a bush, fluttering in the breeze.

This is the "tombstone" filled garden of the house with the coffin on the front step.

Another look at that coffin, in its full setting. Skull-like green lights will likely be lighting the path on Halloween night.

Blended with evergreen swagging, these look like they should be Christmas decorations. But the colours and the owl-like eyes suggest Halloween. 

Yes, they did mean Halloween. Further along is this sparkly hot-purple version of a witch on a broomstick.

And, a jolly little ghost on a ball that once would have hung from a Christmas tree. If it works for Christmas, why not Halloween? 

1 comment:

  1. I did make a comment but I guess it got lost in the ether. I did have to sign into google so perhaps that's why. It's rather cool to see these displays and I hadn't thought about the the idea that there are many who don't relate to Christmas....good point. The cardboard pumpkin reminded me of a Halloween when Richard was determined to wear a real pumpkin over his head for his "headless horseman" costume. After endless cleaning out of the inside and it still wasn't comfortable....we agreed one made of orange construction paper....whew!