Halloween in Italy

By: Kathleen Hughes, foreign correspondent

Imagine a world without Halloween. A world where stores are not dominated by the colors orange and black during the entirety of October. A world where you call the police if your neighbor has skeletons in their front yard. A world where, on Oct. 31, it is highly unusual if a small child in a costume arrives at your door asking for candy.

This, my friends, is the fate of Italy.

Halloween is not a tradition celebrated by Italian people. Instead, they have a national holiday called All Saints Day the day after Halloween, on Nov. 1. Many Italians I talked to said they remember watching American Halloween movies as children, but that was the closest they ever got to the tradition. To Americans, it seems like Halloween festivities are nonexistent in Italy, but my Italian friends insist that it is becoming popular, just not for young children. The “trick-or-treat” phenomenon may never catch on in Italy, but Halloween parties at bars and clubs are slowly becoming normal in Italian cities.

Will I don a pumpkin costume and revel in the small delights of Halloween that Rome has to offer come this Oct. 31? Probably not.

But I will enjoy my day off on Nov. 1, and honor All Saints Day in true Italian fashion by travelling to Naples, Italy to eat a slice of pizza from the first ever pizzeria in the world.

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