In elementary school, Halloween was exciting. Every Halloween, we packed our costumes into our backpacks, or maybe you wore yours to school, happily awaiting the annual parade. We were given the chance to come together as a school, celebrating Halloween as we pranced around in our costumes. We were lucky if teachers handed out candy, or if our parents came to watch us.
At some point, the parades ended. More quickly than not, we reached college, trading candy for alcoholic beverages, and trick-or-treating for dressing up to stand around at parties.
While there is nothing wrong with the way college students choose to celebrate Halloween, we at The Whit feel that these small events, such as movie nights in the student center or events hosted by RAH are not enough. The Whit Staff feels that Rowan University should host a big, celebratory Halloween parade for students, faculty, and staff. This would surely spark nostalgia.
With a quick Google search, the only parade Rowan hosts is the President’s Welcome parade and picnic, which occurs in early September.
Halloween is a mere two weeks after Rowan’s homecoming festivities, leaving plenty of time to plan a Halloween parade that would unite students and faculty alike.
Parades allow communities to join together and celebrate holidays in a prideful and exciting way and what better way for Rowan to celebrate our Prof pride than with a parade to showcase our costumes outside of the classroom?
There are three notable factors as to why The Whit feels this would be a great addition to Rowan’s repertoire of events.
Firstly, as of this fall, Rowan finally has a marching band. The “Pride of the Profs” could potentially lead the Halloween parade, allowing the musicians another chance to showcase their talents. After all, marching bands are staples of parades.
Secondly, how often do sports, clubs, faculty, and staff get the chance to truly join together and just be out on campus celebrating? There are a few events, like HollyBash and Homecoming that get students and faculty together, but a Halloween parade would truly top it. A parade would allow for the marching band, color guard, every sports team, every fraternity and sorority, any or all faculty, every club, and any student to come together and share pride for their school and a holiday whose meaning has changed since we’ve grown up.
Finally, we are college students now, we don’t have the opportunity to get out and go trick-or-treating the way children do, and if you live in on-campus housing you don’t even get the chance to hand candy out to children. College students are put in this odd transitional zone of trying to find opportunities to celebrate Halloween in an entirely new way.
The only options college students have around this time are simple traditions like apple picking, pumpkin carving, or planning a night to watch Halloween movies and/or gathering together at parties to show off their costumes and consume alcohol. People who don’t enjoy drinking or the party scene should have opportunities to have fun on Halloween too. Not everyone enjoys indulging for the holidays.
Parades are not just for elaborate costumes, they share joy through music and often sweet treats and goodies. And look, we realize that an event of this magnitude would cost the University money and require careful, time-consuming planning. But we think that at the end of the day, it would be totally worth it.
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