Six in ten Americans plan to celebrate Halloween

October 30, 2017, 2:00 PM GMT+0

And 82% think their neighborhood is safe for trick-or-treating

American adults don’t all dress up for Halloween and go out trick or treating themselves – but six in ten say they will celebrate the October 31 holiday. The latest Economist/YouGov Poll suggests the most popular form of celebration might just be to stay at home – watching a movie and getting scared.

One in four say they will watch a scary movie at home, while 3% will go out to a theater to watch one. The home is also the focus of one other popular activity; 17% will decorate their home. Home decorating happens everywhere, but it’s women who do most of the work – 21% of women, compared with just 12% of men, do Halloween decorating. Women are also slightly more likely than men to carve a jack-o-lantern.

As for trick or treating, that happens much more often among those under 45, who are either doing this themselves or escorting their children around the neighborhood. Democrats are twice as likely as Republicans to dress up at a costume party; 11% of Democrats and 5% of Republicans will go to a party. And going out happens more in the Northeast than in any other region.

45 seems to be the dividing line between those who celebrate Halloween and those who don’t. Those under 45 are also more likely to go to a party, to a parade and to a haunted house. While age matters in whether or not one takes part in many of these events, it doesn’t affect home decorating – the percentage who say they will decorate their home is just about the same in all age groups.

Going out is generally seen as safe, although there is more concern in big cities than elsewhere, and more concern about safety expressed by blacks than by whites. The oldest respondents are the most likely to view their neighborhood as safe for children to go treat and treating.

What of the 39% who aren’t celebrating at all? More than half of those 65 and older say they won’t do anything for Halloween. It’s not necessarily because of religious objections. 80% of those who aren’t celebrating Halloween say religion has nothing to do with it.

Read more from this week's Economist/YouGov poll here

Image: Getty

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