Today I went to a local mall and saw what I suspected: In New Zealand, Halloween is passé.
There were no displays in the mall, which was decked out for Christmas (the Christmas selling season begins this weekend). The only store with anything like a Halloween display was The Warehouse (the "Home of Halloween", you'll remember), but its display was pathetic by American standards. The photos with this post show all there was.
I also checked two grocery stores (the things I do for my readers!), and neither had Halloween displays. However, sacks of 12 small candy bars were on special this week, and the store I actually shopped in had a cardboard Halloween sales rack from M&M/Mars promoting their product, not that anyone noticed.
Have I mentioned that big, orange pumpkins like we Americans are used to are simply non-existent in Auckland? I don't know that they're available anywhere in New Zealand.
So, this year, Halloween is pretty much a non-starter. Since it falls on Saturday, I doubt we’ll have any trick-or-treaters. And that could be that—or will it? Like the ghouls of American Halloween, attempts to promote the holiday in New Zealand never seem to ever be truly dead.