MMC Halloween Culture: How We Celebrate the Holiday

Upon entering college, whether it be in busy New York City or in middle-of-nowhere Pennsylvania, it is a widely known fact that you can count on one specific time of year to be full of classic, crazy college fun: Halloweekend. The suffix of “weekend” is added because one day is just too short to pack all of the costumes and festive events into. This time of year always awaits with great anticipation from every college kid, whose costume and event planning could start months in advance. However, the holiday lacks purpose if there is nowhere to go to show off these costumes that so much careful thought went into. We’re too old to trick-or-treat and too young to go to bars, so what options are left? For most people who are currently in college at large schools, their plans are made for them; fraternities, sororities, or sports teams normally have the space to host a get-together and enough people at their school to create a guest list. But what if both of these aspects are taken away, and all you have is a tiny school, in a city packed with people, where space is limited, and your tight circle is all you can count on to make plans?

This is the struggle for Marymount Manhattan students as this spooky holiday approaches. Unlike other New York City schools like NYU, Fordham, Columbia, and Pace, Marymount lacks the numbers and social circles that make it easy to make plans for Halloweekend. This adds a whole other level of planning, and stress, to a time where things are supposed to be light-hearted and fun. Just like finding a job in this crazy big city, it becomes about networking: who you know, who they have connections with, and seeing if you are close enough to hitch onto their plans. But despite the school size, Marymount students will show no mercy in sitting out of this chance to dress up and go out. 

One of the best options for Marymount students, when nothing else surfaces, is New York’s Village Halloween Parade. This is a lucky draw for students at the Cooper Square Dorms, for this huge Halloween party on the street is just blocks away. The website for the event puts it perfectly: “Join 100’s of PUPPETS, 35 BANDS, DANCERS, ARTISTS, and thousands of other New Yorkers in costumes of their own creation in the nation’s most wildly creative public participatory event in the greatest city in the world!” Not only is this a fun way to show off your costume, but it’s a fun night out that’s easy on the budget. 

Going to school in New York, it is common to have friends that live in apartments instead of dorms. This can be a great option if you’re into a more quaint celebration. This is an easy fix for the struggle to find Halloween plans since it puts you and your friends in control of your own fun. Text your group chats to come dressed up in their best costumes, get a good spooky playlist, and deck out your space with all the most classic Halloween decorations. Despite the size of your crowd, it’ll give you and your friends the festive setting needed to show off your costumes on Instagram!

Although it’s easy to get caught up in the fact that going to a small school means fewer festivities, it allows you to get creative and form your own fun instead of just being a part of a swarming crowd at a frat house. And being in New York City, it is easy to just walk out your door and see where the night takes you! Just know that you don’t have to put pressure on yourself to find plans and that doing something small doesn’t mean you can’t have fun. As long as you have good company and good costumes, you’re set!