At the risk of sounding like cranky old folks, stand by while we get our glasses, raise our cane to start pointing and say, "When we were kids, trick-or-treating took place on Halloween!"
We did it in two feet of snow and uphill the whole way, of course.
Meadville City Council officials discussed at Wednesday's meeting on which day Trick or Treat Night should take place this year. This came after we assume the city received scores of calls on the issue — or, as was mentioned in Mike Crowley's story on Page One of Friday's Tribune, one resident.
It was an important and pressing issue that just had to be settled on June 19. It was the first item on the "New Business" portion of the meeting's agenda, no less. There are only four months until the big day, after all!
After much discussion, and upon considering many crucial factors, it was decided Trick or Treat Night will take place on Oct. 24 — a full week before Halloween itself.
As Crowley so aptly chronicled, Meadville has been known for years to hold Trick or Treat Night on the Thursday before the Meadville Halloween Parade, often described as the largest nighttime parade in the commonwealth. This year's parade is Oct. 26, so city officials apparently had no choice but to stick Trick or Treat Night on Oct. 24.
Positioning Trick or Treat Night at this time is convenient, as the next day is a teacher in-service day on Crawford Central School District's 2019-20 school calendar. So the three days of fun go like this: Thursday, trick-or-treating; Friday, no school; and Saturday, largest nighttime parade in the state.
Two of City Council's main concerns for holding Trick or Treat Night on Oct. 24 instead of Oct. 31 are weather and daylight. A difference of a week is about 14 minutes of daylight, as Councilman Jim Roha pointed out, so we don't see that as a valid concern.
Regarding the weather: “The thing is, the later it gets, it seems like those poor kids are out there,” Deputy Mayor Nancy Mangilo Bittner said. “I mean, it’s nasty out there sometimes.”
Hundreds — including many children — braved wintry conditions last Dec. 1 to enjoy the Linesville Lighted Tractor Parade. Meadville area residents are used to poor weather — what with just about two months of summer some years and nearly ever other day seemly raining or snowing.
If we're worried about poor weather, why not hold Trick or Treat Night in July or August when it doesn't get nasty outside — or perhaps the night of the Summer Solstice, as that day provides us with the most hours of sunlight all year?
Clearly, there are more important things going on in this fair city than Trick or Treat Night. And this editorial has our collective tongue firmly in our cheek. But why is it so hard to celebrate Halloween — with the candy and the costumes and the fun — on Halloween itself?
Luckily, last year, a group of area residents held a trunk or treat in Meadville's Diamond Park on Halloween night. We hope this event is able to continue and thrive on Halloween — just as the ghosts and ghouls had intended.