Not every community is on board with telling people when to have Halloween — and some are poking fun at those communities that do.
A number of communities are rescheduling trick-or-treating because of the storm expected to douse Southern New England Thursday into Friday. Cities and towns including Lowell, Methuen, and Manchester, N.H., announced new trick-or-treating days.
But some communities are continuing with Halloween as usual — and they’re teasing those that changed their plans.
“We don’t determine when trick or treating is. Much like we don’t tell the big man in red when he can deliver presents,” Holliston police said in a tweet.
PSA from HPD: We don’t determine when trick or treating is. Much like we don’t tell the big man in red when he can deliver presents (besides, we don’t want to be on the naughty list). No hocus pocus here! If families decide to go out remember:— Holliston Police (@HollistonPolice) October 30, 2019
🎃Have Fun pic.twitter.com/HMY4pI3B1d
“Trick-or-treating is NOT a town-sanctioned event,” Weymouth Mayor Robert L. Hedlund and Weymouth Police Chief Richard Grimes said in a statement posted on Twitter. Hedlund and Grimes wrote a poem that said, “Witches, ghosts, goblins and cats/Evil creatures, even bats . . . All fright, and too much pain/What could make this horror worse?/I know, it’s the threat of rain!”
Upton police reassured residents that the weather would not stop Halloween activities in the town.
Rest assured, Upton will be safe tonight for all the trick-or-treaters! Some new officers were sworn in this morning over @ Memorial Elementary School. We were so impressed with their skills that we decided to promote them immediately. Welcome to the UPD command staff kids! pic.twitter.com/NlxRZdpbHY— Upton Police Dept (@UptonPolice) October 31, 2019
The city of Melrose said in a statement that “the City does not set the day or time for trick or treating. I understand that it is going to rain on Halloween, but it is up to parents to decide what their children’s Halloween activities will be.”
Scott Nogueira, a Boston-based meteorologist at the Weather Company, joined in the teasing of the towns rescheduling trick-or-treating.
There’s a lot of talk of postponing and cancelling Halloween tomorrow in many towns. I don’t see much of anything except some wind, especially eastern MA. Looks fairly dry after 5pm except for a few showers.— Scott Nogueira (@ScottNogueira) October 30, 2019
One commenter on a Globe story complained that towns should not be in charge of Halloween scheduling.
“Since when does government (towns) think it has any business interfering with children enjoying themselves?” commenter “chuckflies” said.
“Man, Way to suck the fun out of the best holiday of the year. If you do not provide a treat, be prepared for a trick. Kids do not read the Globe,” said commenter “Awaterguy.”
It’s not unprecedented for local governments to inject themselves into Halloween. In 1959, Boston Mayor John Hynes published a list of suggested Halloween songs and party activities, the Boston City Archives pointed out on its Twitter account.
Hynes suggested residents “welcome guests with greeting: ‘On the night of October Thirty-One/You are hereby commanded to come/To where the spooks are on the prowl/For a meeting with the wise old owl!’”