I found this link on Yahoo! this morning, about a Massachusetts town that "delayed" Halloween to avoid traffic dangers:
The reasoning doesn't necessarily sound too strange to me, coming from Wisconsin. You see, when I moved to Kansas, the whole trick-or-treating on Halloween night after dark was an adjustment. In Wisconsin, each community has set trick or treating hours. They are usually on a Saturday or Sunday afternoon on the weekend adjacent to Halloween - meaning, many kids will be out this weekend. I did find a list on a Green Bay television station as an example:
The reasoning is two-fold. For one, if you want to participate or don't want to participate, you know exactly when to be home, candy bowl in hand with the porch light on! The main reason it started, though, was safety. In 1973, 9-year old Lisa Ann French was raped and murdered Halloween night by a man whose house she stopped at trick or treating. In the aftermath, Halloween became a daytime activity, all the better for neighborhoods to keep an eye on the kids. Perhaps it's loosening a bit - I noticed that with Halloween being on a Friday this year, many communities are having their trick or treating today - not really tonight in some cases - the hours are like 4:30 to 630pm! The set hours weren't really a bad thing, in practice, because it stretched the holiday over several days. Many churches and schools would have parties Halloween night, then families could go trick or treating during the community hours. Fast forward to today, when you have parents urging each other to check the registered sex offender list for the area where their kids will be out and about. What do you think about all of this? Is it an overreaction or a legitimate way to rein in the day? Let me know!