Trick or Treat: Bronxville 1960s

Bird Costumes Halloween 1966 or 1967

My sister (the tall bird) and me (the short bird) in our homemade costumes. I used a big rubbery balloon as the base for the papier mache head. It was hot inside that head and hard to see where I was going. We ended up getting egged by some kids and ran home crying covered in goo. c.1965

I think Halloween is every kids favorite holiday…it was certainly mine…

When we lived in Bronxville in the 1960’s, almost every house in our neighborhood was open for Trick or Treat business. I remember the thrill of going door to door in the night and the crisp smell and swooshing sound of fallen leaves on the sidewalks.

My sister and I went out with my mother when I was little. It was sometimes hard to keep up with the fast pace of running from house to house, especially in some of the costumes I wore. But once our bags were full with yummy stuff, we’d head home and get to go through out huge hauls.

Later when I was older, my sister went out with her friends, and I went out with my mother and cat… (more on that in the next post).

All of my costumes were home made: my mother made most of them or helped me make my own.

My first real costume was of a Japanese lady dressed in a red silk kimono, a golden striped obi and a wonderful wig.

Betty Safran as a Japanese princess, Halloween 1963

Halloween 1963 age 2½ – though I’m dressed as a Japanese Princess I really resemble a mushroom more.

I loved this costume, and when I say loved, I mean LOVED…

I wanted to wear it all the time and I sincerely wanted to be a Japanese princess when I grew up. This was my first ambition in life and not a bad one either.

I’m not sure where this costume disappeared to eventually, but I was heart broken when it was gone.

The next Halloween (in1964) I was Mrs. Santa Claus.

You can see that I have “dimples so merry” and a little round belly, that shook when I laughed like a bowlful of jelly!

I remember trying to walk in this costume. It was difficult because I had a full pillow stuffed inside my suit, and it kept shifting downwards. It also hampered my arms so it was hard to get at my loot bag as I walked around. I think I got cranky about all of this and had to go home early.

Betty as Mrs. Santa Claus 1964

Mrs Santa Claus and the family ghost 1964

Back then when you got a chocolate bar from Trick or Treating it was a full-size big chocolate bar, not one of those tiny things they make these days for Halloween. And we got handfuls of candy corn.

Of course we had to be careful of crazy people putting needles and razor blades in apples and soft foods and candies; my mother always had to okay the loot before we started stuffing ourselves. But I don’t remember anything like that ever appearing in our goodies, though one year there were rumors about some creepy lady up the block and I remember being very afraid and avoiding that house.

My parents were pretty lax about us eating tons of junk. The only thing I remember my Dad doing (and I never forgave him for this), he took all my big chocolate bars for himself and put them in the freezer every year!!!

Hershey's Chocolate with Almonds

My favorite chocolate bar

Talk about stealing candy from a baby!!!

Naturally as soon as I was big enough to stand on a chair to reach the freezer I’d sneak chocolate bars – but I had to be careful not to take too many so he wouldn’t notice any were gone.  I guess I was always a bit of a rebel and a chocoholic.Mrs Santa Claus078


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