Booing tradition spreads the spirit of Halloween

by Leslie Zampier, Reporter

Halloween is here, but ghastly ghosts and ghouls begin to lurk in the neighborhoods throughout October. They lay in wait for the right time to jump out and say BOO! 

The house booing tradition is a fun way to bring out the Halloween spirit. Its roots lead back to the early 1980s and continue to be a local tradition today.

Booing normally begins in late September and ends Halloween night in New Market, Md. 

The annual tradition is beloved by some Linganore High School students who live in the area.

“The booing tradition is my favorite time of the year! It brings the community together and is lots of fun. It also gives you the excuse to doorbell ditch houses,” said Linganore sophomore Aidan Oppett.

The Ghost that you put outside your house or in the window. (Leslie Zampier)

Booing simply begins with a selfless gesture and spreads like a happy plague. 

People who participate in the month-long event put together a small basket with treats, themed gifts, delicious treats and goodies, and a ‘directive’ to continue to spread the booing.

This tradition is celebrated by all ages. To spark the Halloween flame of fun, one must accomplish a “boo” correctly, and the booing needs to continue from one house to the next. A participant wants to encourage the house that they booed to continue on with the fun. 

After a family has been booed, they will hang a ghost on their door or window to show that the house has already been approached for the season. The ghost could be an object or a piece of paper.

New Market residents report to enjoy participating in this magical Halloween tradition.

“Putting together a basket full of exciting, joyful goodies is lots of fun. The most fun [aspect] about the tradition, though, is watching the families and friends open their front door and receive a gift,” said New Market resident Ellen Stubborn. “[The smile] that this tradition brings upon others faces is my favorite part of booing.”

Another local resident whose family participates in the tradition shared one of her memories.

“One thing I’ll never forget about this booing tradition is any time you’ve been booed you need to yell out three words: “I’VE BEEN BOOED!” said Nadilynn Meitzler.

Boo Baskets that get put together to take to neighbors/friends houses.  (Leslie Zampier )

While a boo will most likely organically spread throughout the neighborhood, that does not mean one should sit idly by and watch. Residents are encouraged to take it upon themselves to join in the fun and to share the ins and outs of this booing tradition.

Next year, spread the booing tradition to other neighborhoods and enjoy the Halloween magic that comes with it.