Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Halloween Facts

Some Halloween factoids for your edification and amusement. These came from the U.S. Census Bureau in a press release. I put my own twist on the information.

Halloween observances date back thousands of years to Celtic rituals.

The day is associated with witches, ghosts, devils and hobgoblins. Not to mention presidential politics, pillowcases and pumpkin pails.

In the U.S., the first official citywide Halloween celebration occurred in Anoka, Minn., in 1921. (That's a long time for something that is thousands of years old to have government sanction.)

There are 36 million potential trick-or-treaters in the United States (that's kids age 5 to 13).

They could hit about 110.3 million houses if they visited every home. (That's a lot of bellyaches!)

The pumpkin-producing states produced 1.1 billion pounds of pumpkin in 2007. Illinois produced the most with 542 million pounds. Other top producers are California, New York and Ohio - those states produced at least 100 million pounds of pumpkin.

All of those pumpkins were valued at $117 million.

Here are some scary-sounding place names:

Transylvania County, N.C. (29,984 residents) - the major drink is red in color, of course.

Tombstone, Ariz. (population 1,562) - plus several hundred ghosts.

Pumpkin Center, N.C. (population 2,228) - where they eat a lot of pie.

Pumpkin Bend, Ark. (population 307) - where they toss a lot of pie.

Cape Fear in New Hanover County, N.C. (15,711) - where they people often tremble.

Cape Fear in Chatham County, N.C. (1,170) - where the people often shake and quake.

Skull Creek, Neb. (population 274) - where the headless horseman roams.

In 2006 there were 1,170 chocolate and coca product manufacturers. They employed 39,457 people and shipped out $13. 9 billion in goods (I ate my share.).

California has the most chocolate and cocoa manufacturing plants: 128, followed by Pennsylvania with 116. And here I thought Hershey, PA had the most.

There were 473 non-chocolate making candy facilities in the U.S. in 2006. These factories employed 18,733 people and shipped $7.2 billion worth of goods that year. California again led the nation with 72 establishments. I guess this would be gum and hard candy.

This is why I am fat: Americans ate 24.5 pounds of candy in 2007.


  1. I have a friend from Transylvania for real.

    I wonder how far candy corn goes back.

  2. All very interesting! I've sort of lost track of Halloween this year what with all the moving around.

  3. Did you know there's a Transylvania University in Lexington, KY? Pretty spooky huh?


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