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As a kid in the early 70's...I was between 8-12 years old....During October..my friends and I would sneak out at night and visit local grave yards, sneak into old abandon homes or stay out in the woods near the old swamp all night...it was creepy,scary and a ton of fun....do kids still do such things? My kids could careless....and their friends feel the same way....and I think they are missing out on something great....I tell them to me its like not celebrating your birthday. I know some people don't..so don't be offended...I'm just making a point that kids seem to have changed. Or is it me?
 

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The world has changed.

Consider the case of Saint Anne's retreat, locally here in Utah.

This was a classic "Haunted" location. Abandoned old Nunnery up the canyon. Easy to sneak in. Legend was a nun drowned her unwanted child in the swimming pool and you could go in the center of the dry pool and hear it crying. Many teens did.

A group of eight kids wandered into the camp about 4:30 a.m. Friday and say they got more of a thrill than they wanted. While fooling around in an empty swimming pool, three men with armed shotguns and knives jumped out of some bushes, told the teens to freeze and fired a shot over their heads, alleged Kevin Thompson, who was with the group.

The men yelled profanities at the kids and "threatened to slit our throats if we moved," said Thompson, 19.

The men apparently were hired to guard the camp by the family who owns it.

One of the gunmen, who seemed to be in charge, yelled racial slurs at an Asian male with the group and told him that he "had killed several Vietnamese people in Vietnam and wasn't afraid to do it again," said Thompson.

The teens accuse the man of pointing a handgun six inches from the teen's head and pulling the trigger. The rest of the group couldn't see what was happening, so they thought the man had killed their friend, Thompson said.

"He (one of the gunmen) kept talking about Vietnam," Thompson said. "I don't know what he was talking about, but it was the scariest experience I ever had."

The group was taken to a cabin on the property, where they were tied together at the neck with wire, said Wyatt Stahle, 16, Logan. The men jabbed the barrel of their shotguns in Stahle's back as they walked, he said.

The men allegedly told the teens they had been tied with "detonation wire" and if they moved it "would cut off their heads."

http://www.deseretnews.com/article/588977/Charges-likely-for-watchmen-in-Logan-Canyon-scare.html?pg=all

The guards were eventually convicted on several charges, including sexual abuse of a minor.

It's not the 70's any more.

Child abductions are no longer just things you hear about. Cops don't have the "just kids out having fun" attitude. Cemeteries have increased patrols because idiots go vandalize them every year. Abandoned buildings are no longer always abandoned.
 

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As a mom of two boys - 19 and 14- I have looked at their friends and classmates and realized that its NOT just Halloween. I hate to generalize but this generation doesnt get up and do much. Our youngest tries but has to drag friends outside for anything. The oldest (when he was younger) wouldnt go 2 blocks down to see a friend... they could just xbox instead. ugh.

I joke often that when xbox produces a XXX line of 'games and accessories', the world's population will drop RAPIDLY. Because xbox is always better than real life in their brains. LOL
 

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Wisp in the Mist
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While I agree that times have changed (you hear more about violence now than we ever did as kids), I do very much think that "Halloween" has changed, too.

It has become synonymous with "horror", thanks to slasher movies. Kids aren't afraid of Frankenstein's monster anymore, because they know it's not possible. But give them a real life murderer, well, that's possible, so to them, that's scary. To me, it's horrifying on a completely different level, and I literally HATE the fact that Halloween has become a murder fest. It used to be that the fictional monsters killed victims. Now it's real people (whether it's their spirits or not, because even when it's their spirit, they did it before death as well), and keeps getting more grisly, because "we've seen that trick before, give us something new".

I hate it. HATE. IT. I've had a family member who was murdered. Trust me, you never, ever get over that.

And, Halloween wasn't always about killing, anyway. Ghosts and skeletons can't kill, for instance. Witches sometimes just cast spells. Vampires, zombies, and werewolves, well...yeah, they are looking for fatalities.

The closest that I will ever get to dealing with murder in my Halloween, is the Headless Horseman. I do have a skeleton executioner, but my feeling on that is that executioners execute criminals (although back in the days of beheading executions, they were not always really criminals...such as the unfortunate wives of Henry the VIII)

And honestly, I feel guilty about having those two items in my scene anyway, because of their association with murder.
 

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As a kid in the early 70's...I was between 8-12 years old....During October..my friends and I would sneak out at night and visit local grave yards, sneak into old abandon homes or stay out in the woods near the old swamp all night...it was creepy,scary and a ton of fun....do kids still do such things? My kids could careless....and their friends feel the same way....and I think they are missing out on something great....I tell them to me its like not celebrating your birthday. I know some people don't..so don't be offended...I'm just making a point that kids seem to have changed. Or is it me?
It was a thing as well in the last 80's early 90's. Growing up outside of Chicago every young teen around new of the legendary Ovaltine Factory. Many folklore stories surrounded that abandoned factory for decades. It was known by most as a hide out for devil worshipers to host their satanic rituals. Kids would dare each to go in there at night, or worse...spend the night. I, myself, stayed clear of the abandoned factory. I've heard too many stories about it and never dared to go near it. I highly doubt there was any truth to these claims, but as a kid it seemed logical.
 

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Thanks for the feed back.....I'm sooooo glad I grew-up when I did. Before high-tech kicked in. I cannot imagine as a kid...playing a game on TV all day or talking to my friends on a device with a 3 or 4 inch screen....
 

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The world has changed.

Consider the case of Saint Anne's retreat, locally here in Utah.

This was a classic "Haunted" location. Abandoned old Nunnery up the canyon. Easy to sneak in. Legend was a nun drowned her unwanted child in the swimming pool and you could go in the center of the dry pool and hear it crying. Many teens did.




http://www.deseretnews.com/article/588977/Charges-likely-for-watchmen-in-Logan-Canyon-scare.html?pg=all

The guards were eventually convicted on several charges, including sexual abuse of a minor.

It's not the 70's any more.

Child abductions are no longer just things you hear about. Cops don't have the "just kids out having fun" attitude. Cemeteries have increased patrols because idiots go vandalize them every year. Abandoned buildings are no longer always abandoned.
My gosh, why are there people like this in the world! That is terrifying!

Last year some friends of mine got together in a little cabin up in Big Cottonwood Canyon and we all read spooky ghost stories, it was a blast and I'm in my 30's and my wife is in here late 20's. It seems that Halloween is becoming more for the grown-ups like it was during the "golden years" of Halloween.

Also, it's nice to see a fellow Utahn. :)
 

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While I agree that times have changed (you hear more about violence now than we ever did as kids), I do very much think that "Halloween" has changed, too.

It has become synonymous with "horror", thanks to slasher movies. Kids aren't afraid of Frankenstein's monster anymore, because they know it's not possible. But give them a real life murderer, well, that's possible, so to them, that's scary. To me, it's horrifying on a completely different level, and I literally HATE the fact that Halloween has become a murder fest. It used to be that the fictional monsters killed victims. Now it's real people (whether it's their spirits or not, because even when it's their spirit, they did it before death as well), and keeps getting more grisly, because "we've seen that trick before, give us something new".

I hate it. HATE. IT. I've had a family member who was murdered. Trust me, you never, ever get over that.

And, Halloween wasn't always about killing, anyway. Ghosts and skeletons can't kill, for instance. Witches sometimes just cast spells. Vampires, zombies, and werewolves, well...yeah, they are looking for fatalities.

The closest that I will ever get to dealing with murder in my Halloween, is the Headless Horseman. I do have a skeleton executioner, but my feeling on that is that executioners execute criminals (although back in the days of beheading executions, they were not always really criminals...such as the unfortunate wives of Henry the VIII)

And honestly, I feel guilty about having those two items in my scene anyway, because of their association with murder.
It's true, Halloween used to be about pumpkin headed goblins, witches, and ghosts. I love that classic Halloween feel and I'm not a big slasher movie fan. I do enjoy horror movies, but mostly of the classic type (Nosferatu, Frankenstein, The Invisible Man, etc.) and creature films (Tarantula, Jaws, The Killer Shrews, etc.) Halloween does have it's ties to death, and that is probably where the whole homicidal maniac thing came from. To each their own I suppose.
 

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I grew up in what was practically a ghost town because a dam was being constructed nearby. So there were very few kids nearby and my parents were pretty over-protective. The woods in fall were my retreat after coming home from school.

It was only after becoming an adult did I get to enjoy abandoned houses and cemeteries after dark. Now that I'm a parent I fear that I will be over-protective too because the world has changed so much since I was a kid. I do intend to show my daughter the joys of fall and Halloween and even go exploring in the dark when she's older but I have mixed feelings about her "exploring" with or without friends unless an adult is present.
 

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Monster Collector
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The times have definitely changed. All we can do is continue on trying to bring some of that old school magic that we grew up with into as many new people as we can.
 

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It has totally changed. On one hand I think it is because unfortunately, the times have changed and there are real dangers out there for them now. Our city trick or treats from 5-7...it's still freaking light out for God's sake, but it's because of safety issues. I hate how much it has changed, but I understand it to some extent. My stepson is 18 now, but when I met him he was 9 and his mother wouldn't allow him to TOT because she felt he was too old. I didn't agree but we did what we could to instill a love of Halloween in him anyway. We took him to haunted attractions (which he was terrified of at first) exposed him to some of our favorite movies and decorated each year. I'm now proud to say he bravely leads his pack of friends through haunted attractions and watches horror movies with his eyes open (mostly) lol. He always tags us in Halloween or horror related posts on Facebook, and it is the highlight of my day every time. It was tough though, it is really sad how much time kids spend with their devices and their PS4/Xbox, and it took a lot of pushing to get him out the door. Luckily we all agreed that was unhealthy and his mom and dad did a lot to get him involved in sports (which he LOVES) and aside from the Playstation he didn't have a smart phone or any other kind of device until last year when he bought an iPhone with his own money. I don't know how realistic that is for other families, but somehow it worked for ours. It still makes me sad that he may not ever experience the thrill of walking into a graveyard at night, and it makes me mad that there are so many terrible people out there ruining it for everyone.
 

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My only childhood graveyard experience was in the 4th grade when my class went to Riverside Cemetery for headstone rubbings. The day before Halloween. I don't know if that was on purpose or just how the schedule worked out, but we certainly had fun running around scaring each other. There were no cemeteries in walking/biking distance and it was all new development so going on our own wasn't really an option.

I always question whether the world is actually more dangerous now or if it's just that we're more aware of it - 24 hour sensationalist news, murder porn, and crime dramas have highlighted the darkness in our wold in a disproportionate way. I'm sure there are areas that have changed, once safe neighborhoods that have succumbed to gang violence, but is the world itself actually worse?

As for the whole mythical monsters vs real, I think there's two reasons for it. One is that the old monsters have become trite. The original movies are cheesy compared to modern standards - not necessarily a bad thing but they don't engage the younger generation the same way modern films do. Also, the characters have been featured in cartoons, cereal boxes, and kid's movies. I never saw Frankenstein as scary, one of my favorite movies was about a misfit witch at a school for witches, Dracula was The Count on Sesame Street, and so on. Add on the additional exposure real crime has received and it's natural that people get a greater thrill from a potentially real threat vs fantasy. Also, the obsession with gore and serial killers is hardly new, it's just grown into.
 
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