There are horrors in Payson. Mullin Town Square has become a ghost town.
No, it’s not Halloween thrills making campus spooky — it’s midterm season. Exams bring more fear and fright instead of the ominous presence of the fall months.
Pepperdine becomes a winter wonderland for Christmas, but the only indication of fall on campus is the arrival of pumpkin spice lattes at Starbucks and the sleep-deprived students who order them.
Maybe you’ve seen the skeleton above Starbucks asking if you’re going to order that decaffeinated cold brew, the lone mini pumpkin on top of the BPC or the pumpkins growing at the track. But, this is not enough — Pepperdine needs to make campus spookier during fall.
Few campus-wide activities take place during Halloween, and there’s a lack of any other fall activities during September through November.
The Board hosts the Fall Farmer’s Market Festival and BSA, ISA and Crossroads hold a Halloween bash. Housing and Residence Life planned to host a Halloween Field Day, but the event was canceled this year in an Oct. 19 email sent to first-year residents.
Decorations are also hard to come across. Few locations, like the International Programs office and the entrance of the HAWC, have fall decorations displayed.
Pepperdine’s Christian community might be the reason for the lack of Halloween spirit on campus. Many Christians choose to not celebrate the holiday because of its controversial origins in celebrating the dead.
But, what about holidays and observances like Día de Los Muertos, All Saints’ Day and All Souls Day?
Día de los Muertos is commonly celebrated in Mexican heritages Nov. 1, and Nov. 2, by painting skull faces and honoring those who have died through prayer. Celebrants give traditional Mexican candy and sweets to family and friends, just like Halloween.
Those in the Christian faith celebrate All Saints’ Day and All Souls Day during the same time as Día de los Muertos. The first two days in November are set aside to honor all saints and people who have died.
If Halloween is too controversial for Pepperdine, can holidays like Día de los Muertos be celebrated instead, since they have Christian backgrounds? Students could paint skull faces, pass out candy, build ofrendas honoring loved ones and, of course, pray.
Any type of fall decor belongs on campus — it doesn’t have to be associated with Halloween. We want the spook and fright of fall.
The same way a Christmas tree lives in Mullin Town Square during the winter, a 15-foot skeleton should tower over the water fountain. Even better, the pumpkins growing at the track can be made into track-o’-lanterns, and students can place them around campus.
First-year housing can encourage residents to decorate their windows the same way many are posting their Instagram handles. Pumpkins and scarecrows can welcome passersby and add fall frolic to their walks.
Can the Board hold a costume contest and encourage students to trick-or-treat at faculty housing? Not only would it make Pepperdine spookier, but it would also boost community spirit.
Not even George Pepperdine’s ghost can be seen roaming the halls. During a tough midterm season, Pepperdine students deserve more of a ghostly presence than the haunting feeling of approaching exams.
Jack-o’-lanterns, falling leaves and skeletons are all things Pepperdine lacks for the fall season. Pepperdine students need a reminder of what autumn is like, because October in Malibu is still 70 degrees and sunny.
Where’s the spooky, Pepperdine? We want more spook.
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