The Halloween tradition is a muddled one; with traditions in an ancient Celtic celebration, Halloween started in Europe and made its way to the United States, where it has been embraced as a holiday for children.
In recent years, however, the American version of Halloween has spread to the rest of the world, with Morocco being no exception.
Madame Monet, an expat in Marrakesh, explains:
Halloween is making steady inroads into Morocco.
I live in Marrakesh, where of course we celebrate Halloween at the American School with class parties. Many of the kids come to school dressed in elaborate costumes. Americans in Marrakesh have celebrated Halloween with private parties and privately-arranged trick-or-treating for many years. But last year was the first time ever some Moroccan kids rang my doorbell and said, “Trick-or-Treat!” We managed to round up some snacks quickly. This year, I’ll be prepared better with a sack of candy, just in case.
Moroccan children attending French and American schools have been learning about Halloween for a number of years now, and other kids have now been seeing masks for sale in the stores. Furthermore, movies and plenty of American TV is now rebroadcast on the satellite dishes out of Saudi Arabia, and seen here in Morocco. I predict that within a generation, there will be a subset of Moroccans regularly celebrating Halloween, having parties, and perhaps even trick-or-treating.
The View From Fez also reports that a Halloween celebration is to take place in Fez:
Now Halloween is not a traditional event in Morocco, but The View from Fez hears whispers of a HUGE Halloween party to be held on October 31. We have a brave volunteer who says she will dress up, front up and take photographs. Watch this space.
But not everyone is celebrating. Peace Corps Volunteer Hillary is a little sad to miss American Halloween celebrations:
I do miss home and now with Halloween coming up and not being able to hang out with Matthew, Becky, and James at the bar… do the fun KCAD halloween parties, and be able to wear my usual 3 costumes i buy for this makes me kinda sad, but i know that Halloween here will be a fun time and an experience to see how Moroccans view this day and how similar and different it is to us in the States.. be prepared for stories:)