Saturday, October 16, 2021

My First Halloween by Sarah J. McNeal #TheWildingsSeries


I'm on the left, my sister, Mary is on the right. 


I was 4 years old and we were living in the small, rural village of Luthersburg, Pennsylvania in 1951. Life was very different then. Everybody knew everybody, and as much as gossip was a big entertainment, people were kind to one another and were generous to their neighbors. They also liked to celebrate everything. If a leaf fell from the tree, it was cause for celebration. So, Halloween was a big deal and, naturally, the town had a carnival for the kids.


Mom, who made all our clothes back then, also made our costumes for the Halloween carnival. She made a clown costume for me with big puffy balls down the front and poke-a-dot material with plenty of rickrack trim. It wasn’t the kind of clown from “It”, but more like Bozo the clown with a happy face. I was so excited about the costume and the carnival. I was pretty enthusiastic about the prospects of candy treats, too.


Remember these peanut butter taffy kisses you always got?

I had a great time at the carnival. I don’t remember much of what I did there, but suffice it to say, I was in kid heaven when we got home. I wanted to hurry up and get inside so I could see what treats were in my bag. In my enthusiasm to get out of the car, I forgot to wait for Pop to bring it to a stop. Keep in mind, in those days there were no seatbelts or special child seats to impede my exit from the car. I flung the door open and immediately feel to the ground. Pop brought the car to a screeching halt and ran back to me hollering, “Are you hurt?” He told me later he thought he had run over me with the car. I was completely fine, just a little scuffed up from the gravel in the driveway. Mom came running as Pop scooped me up and we all ran inside the house to see if any damage was done. I was fine, but there was a big lecture delivered by Pop about not leaping from a moving car. Of course, most of this was lost on me, a kid who was just eager to get to her Halloween treats. I’ll never forget that first Halloween memory, however, and the excitement I felt about the quirky holiday.


The picture I added is the only one I have of my sister and me when we lived in Pennsylvania. The next year we moved to North Carolina. I wore the clown costume one more time to go trick-or-treating with my sister and the neighborhood kids—no parental supervision and we made it out alive.


What do you remember about your first Halloween? Were you allowed to eat all your treats as you wanted, or did your parents dole out the treats to you in some reasonable manner? What was your first costume?



My only Halloween story from #TheWildingsSeries

Sarah J. McNeal

Author of Heartwarming Stories




Amazon Author's Page

Fantasy and Dreams (


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