“Listen! The wind is rising and the air is wild with leaves,
We have had our summer evenings, now for October eves!”
~ Humbert Wolfe, Italian-born English poet (1885-1940)
Despite warm days, there is no doubting it is October. The evenings come early, quickly cooling into the 50s overnight. The skies are a blue like none other. Pumpkins of all shapes, sizes and colors are overflowing in stores. Within days, we’ll be greeting trick-or-treaters on Halloween night.
Halloween weather; does it ever rain on Halloween? I don’t recall one rainy night growing up in La Crescenta. But jump ahead a generation to our own kids and I remember a few drizzly ones. But, like the post office, nothing kept us from our routes. Thinking back, I can honestly say my recollections are not candy-driven. It goes much, much deeper. Nothing creepy, dark or evil was involved, either. It was all about fun, pretending and community.
The Crescenta Valley climate and weather are prime for pumpkin growing. Because of their need for deep soakings, especially in the midst of our current drought, a store-bought pumpkin will have to suffice. Perhaps next year we’ll have the backyard patch variety.
A scarecrow, a gypsy, a clown and a friendly ghost – Halloween dress-up for a local little girl. In the 1950s and ’60s grown-ups were only allowed to make costumes, assist in pumpkin carving, bake, escort trick-or-treaters and answer doors. Parties were mostly for kids. Unless you were related to the Grinch, trick-or-treaters were welcomed to your home by a candle-lit jack-o-lantern and sometimes cupcakes, cookies, apples and cider. Candles were blown out by 8:30 p.m., marking the end of Halloween for that year. By the age of 12, your trick-or-treating years were over too.* It seemed extra cold walking to school the next morning. Reminders of the evening before lay in the street smashed. Parents exclaimed (with a glint of a smile), “Teenagers!”
Halloween forecast thus far! Mild temperatures will stay in place through next week, with daytimes ranging from the 70s to the mid 80s, and nights in the 50s. No trick Halloween night – the temperature may drop below 50 degrees.
A chilling touch to a fun evening!
*Fun has no age limit.
Sue Kilpatrick is a
Crescenta Valley resident and
Official Skywarn Spotter for the
National Weather Service. Reach her at firstname.lastname@example.org.