If there’s one thing we associate with Halloween, it’s the traditional orange pumpkin. Various fruits, gourds in particular, have been carved since time immemorial. However, the modern practice of carving pumpkins for Halloween is generally believed to have begun in Ireland. For some, the Jack-o’-lantern was a way to ward off evil spirits. Another notion is that that a Jack-o’-lantern, put out the night before All Saints’ Day and two nights before All Souls’ Day represents souls languishing in Purgatory. And of course, we can’t exclude the possibility that the real purpose of a Jack-o’-lantern is to have some fun by giving people a fright.
Another beloved Halloween tradition is trick-or-treating. For kids, what could be more fun than going out and getting all the candy you can carry? But for children with food allergies, this presents a lot of risks.
FARE, Food Allergy Research & Education, is an organization dedicated to raising awareness of food allergies. 1 child in 13 has a food allergy, according to FARE. Some common allergies include milk, eggs, chocolate, and peanuts and other nuts — presenting obvious problems for affected trick-or-treaters. All the more so since miniature candies may have different ingredients that the full-sized versions and also lack proper labels. A local food allergy awareness group came up with the idea of putting out a teal-painted pumpkin to signal that non-food items are available and FARE has taken this national as the Teal Pumpkin Project. So in addition to handing out the usual candy this Halloween, you might want to consider having some non-food items like glow sticks or bracelets, stickers, and pencils on hand and put out a teal pumpkin so everyone knows.
We’ve posted a video below that will tell you all about FARE’s Teal Pumpkin Project.
What do think of this effort to make Halloween safe and fun for everyone? Let us know in the comments at Facebook. Be sure to like and share, too!