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  • Boys basketball scrimmage at Kennedy on Nov. 19

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  • Boys bowling plays City High at Colonial Bowling Lanes on Nov. 20

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  • Girls basketball scrimmage against Iowa City Regina on Nov. 20

No costumes, no jack-o’-lanterns, no candy corn

Some students at West choose not to celebrate Halloween.

Art by Emma Hall

Pulling on their assorted costumes of ghosts, witches, zombies and anything in between, kids race out the door on Halloween night ready to fill their bags with candy. As they knock on each door, their bags start to fill up until there’s hardly any room left.Art by Emma Hall

While this experience is a common one for most kids in the country, about 30.5 percent of US citizens are not going to celebrate Halloween in 2018, according to Statista.com.

Amy Crespo ‘21 chooses to not partake in the celebrations. Crespo has never celebrated Halloween for religious reasons.

“It’s about my faith and what I believe in,” Crespo said. “The Bible told me not to fear anything … and I think that Halloween is about the scary stuff … and if it provides fear, I don’t want to celebrate it, because I don’t want to put fear into other people.”

Quite a few religions do not celebrate the holiday because of its basis in Christianity, and other religions do not celebrate it because of its association with Satanism.

When she was younger, Crespo used to stay home from school on Halloween. Now, with the workload of high school, she is not able to do that anymore.

“[Going to school on Halloween] doesn’t really bug me as much anymore,” Crespo said. “It’s nice seeing people having fun, but I still won’t participate in it.”

Whenever you have someone that has different views than you or celebrates different things you grow as a person. You understand more and you’re more accepting of people.”

— Abigail McKeone '21

Crespo has a lot of friends from her church, Independent Pentecostal Christian Church, that also do not celebrate Halloween. She has known them since they were two, so the group did not feel as left out when other kids were talking about Halloween.

“It’s nice that they don’t celebrate it [either]. It’s kind of easier to have those friends,” Crespo said.

Her friends that do celebrate Halloween are also supportive of Crespo’s decisions. One such friend is Abigail McKeone ‘21.

“She told us in elementary [that she doesn’t celebrate Halloween]. I didn’t really care, she can do whatever she wants,” McKeone said.

McKeone has known Crespo since fourth grade, and she appreciates their friendship.

“Whenever you have someone that has different views than you or celebrates different things, you grow as a person. You understand more and you’re more accepting of people,” McKeone said.

Being in a school surrounded by people who celebrate Halloween can sometimes be awkward. Crespo’s longtime friends tend to respectfully not talk about Halloween around her, but new friends often do not know.

“If there’s a new person, [they’ll say] ‘Oh, what do you [do] for Halloween?’ and I’m there and then my friends will usually say, ‘Oh she doesn’t celebrate Halloween,’ right before I get to it,” Crespo explained. “I guess sometimes they won’t talk about it just because they know I don’t do it, which makes it less of an awkward conversation.”

People have different views on everything, and [my friends] understand that.”

— Amy Crespo '21

Especially during the fall, Halloween shows up everywhere, so avoiding it can be difficult.

“I’ll always be offered [Halloween candy] whenever I go to a doctor’s appointment during this time of year. They’ll say, ‘Oh do you want this candy?’ … I just reject it kindly,” Crespo said. Sometimes Crespo will take the candy, but because it is a part of Halloween she usually will decline.

Crespo accepts other people’s differences and hopes that people accept hers too.

“People have different views on everything, and [my friends] understand that,” Crespo said. “We just support each other. If they don’t want to believe in something or they don’t want to celebrate [something] I’ll support them. It’s just our choices.”

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About the Writer
Bess Frerichs, Reporter

Bess Frerichs is a Sophomore and she is starting her first year on staff as a reporter. Outside of West Side Story, she enjoys reading and playing the...

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No costumes, no jack-o’-lanterns, no candy corn