Growing up, Halloween was my favorite holiday. I got to use my creativity to come up with fun, spooky, or outrageous costumes to elicit screams or laughs. I think it was one of the reasons I was so drawn to theater (I eventually received my Bachelor’s degree from the University of Southern California in theater, with a minor in cinema production). As I grew older and understood the history behind Halloween, it took on a deeper meaning.
Trick-or-treating has its origins in the belief that those who have passed on can return and visit their earthly dwellings. The living occupants of those dwellings might welcome the specters with their favorite treats, but they would leave them outside for the spirits so as not to disturb the current residents of the house. Other people would then “impersonate” those spirits so as to revel in all the free offerings! The idea that the departed can return (if only for a short visit) gives some comfort to those who have lost loved ones.
Griffith Park has a glorious history of the unexplained. This Halloween, a special edition of our popular Creature Camp Out family overnight experience will delve into those weird and creepy stories of Griffith Park and the Los Angeles Zoo. We’ll start out with a Zoo tour and explore the history of Griffith Park and all the odd occurrences that have befallen the area. Once at the campsite, we’ll make s’mores and hunt for ghosts. And what campfire would be complete without some good ol’ (not-too-scary) ghost stories? And who knows? Famous local ghosts the Lady in Purple, the Morning Jogger, the Singer, and “Colonel” Griffith Jenkins Griffith riding his horse might just make an appearance. When all is said and done, it’s up to you to decide if the unexplained remains a mystery.
Spaces are still available for the Boo at the L.A. Zoo Overnight. Reserve yours today.
Rosalio is a Curator of Education at the L.A. Zoo.