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  #1  
Old 10-31-2001, 01:43 PM
lucwarm lucwarm is offline
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This morning, I told my SO that I planned to go over to our new house tonight (Halloween) to pass out candy and to keep an eye on the house.

She told me that the real night to watch out for is October 30 -- "Cabbage Night." Sure enough, I took a walk this morning and saw evidence of the usual juvenile pranks -- shaving cream, toilet paper, etc. spread throughout our neighborhood.

This is the first time I ever heard of "Cabbage Night."

What are the origins of Cabbage Night? Where is it observed? (I grew up in the Boston area, and never heard of it)
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  #2  
Old 10-31-2001, 01:58 PM
Flymaster Flymaster is offline
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Quote:
Originally posted by lucwarm
This morning, I told my SO that I planned to go over to our new house tonight (Halloween) to pass out candy and to keep an eye on the house.

She told me that the real night to watch out for is October 30 -- "Cabbage Night." Sure enough, I took a walk this morning and saw evidence of the usual juvenile pranks -- shaving cream, toilet paper, etc. spread throughout our neighborhood.

This is the first time I ever heard of "Cabbage Night."

What are the origins of Cabbage Night? Where is it observed? (I grew up in the Boston area, and never heard of it)
Another Boston person. It doesn't exist on the North Shore. On the other hand, pranks abound on Halloween itself.
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Old 10-31-2001, 02:01 PM
Keeve Keeve is online now
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I grew up in North NJ in the 60's-70's and you have described it perfectly.

My wife, who grew up in Central NJ, also knows of Oct 30 being a night of trouble, but they called it "Mischief Night", and loves to laugh about how silly the "Cabbage" sounds.

I've never heard anyone call it "Cabbage Night" except from my hometown. And I must admit, I'd like to know where the name came from.
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Old 10-31-2001, 02:11 PM
kniz kniz is offline
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Perhaps one of the favorite pranks was to make a cabbage look like a human head and scare people on that night.

That folks is a pure quess
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Old 10-31-2001, 02:20 PM
Flymaster Flymaster is offline
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Wow...I just realized that I quoted the entire OP. I didn't mean to. Sorry.
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  #6  
Old 10-31-2001, 02:20 PM
The Scrivener The Scrivener is offline
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Ditto for "Mischief Night" [Florida].

Funny, I just heard a suburban [Jerseyan?] woman interviewed on local [NYC] TV news last night call it "Cabbage Night". I suspect it may have something to do with tossing cabbages, but that's a WAG.
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  #7  
Old 10-31-2001, 02:23 PM
mobo85 mobo85 is offline
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Where I'm from (northern NJ), it's Goosey Night. I have no idea WHY, though. I've never seen anyone throw a goose at a house. Eggs, yes. Goose, no.
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  #8  
Old 10-31-2001, 02:31 PM
Baron Baron is offline
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Another Northern NJ native checking in here, and we used to call it "Cabbage night" as well. Eggs, shaving cream, and camouflage/black clothes were the order for the night. I'm amazed I was able to convince my parents that I wasn't going to be causing any real trouble........but I never really did.....just shaving cream here and there....no spray paint or anything like that....
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  #9  
Old 10-31-2001, 02:35 PM
lucwarm lucwarm is offline
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So it seems like a strictly regional tradition.

(Yes, we live in Bergen County, New Jersey.)

I agree that the obvious derivation is that cabbage was a component of a traditional trick.

But why October 30, not October 31?
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  #10  
Old 10-31-2001, 03:08 PM
slortar slortar is offline
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IIRC, in Michigan, it's known as Devil's Night.
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  #11  
Old 10-31-2001, 03:33 PM
The Great Gazoo The Great Gazoo is offline
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Quote:
Originally posted by lucwarm
So it seems like a strictly regional tradition.

(Yes, we live in Bergen County, New Jersey.)

I agree that the obvious derivation is that cabbage was a component of a traditional trick.

But why October 30, not October 31?
This is the key question. Why October 30?? It seems unwise to have it on October 30. Do you think that any homeowner who has their house egged, TPed, etc. on October 30 is going to give out prime treats to the same kids who egged their house the night before. No. I'm thinking horehound drops at best.

This is a holiday that screams to be moved to November 1. Then you can blackmail the candy givers. Don't give us something good?? We'll see you tomorrow night - "Cabbage Night"!!!!
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  #12  
Old 10-31-2001, 03:54 PM
Doug Bowe Doug Bowe is offline
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I put "cabbage night" into google and got the Ben and Jerry's Ice Cream page. With this...
--------------------------------------

In the 1800s, as a lot of people emigrated to the U.S., the holidays and traditions of different cultures merged. Halloween was not always a happy time. October 31, or the night before took on other names. Some called it Devil's or Hell night, to others it was mischief night. Here in Vermont, the night before is called cabbage night. To some people this became a time to play tricks on others. Some of these tricks were not fun at all.
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  #13  
Old 10-31-2001, 08:27 PM
nineiron nineiron is offline
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We called October 30 "Beggar's Night." Believe it or not, when we were young, we went trick-or-treating on that night as well as on October 31.
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  #14  
Old 10-31-2001, 11:51 PM
bibliophage bibliophage is offline
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My mother grew up in N.H. and when she was young they went begging for candy on the 30th, not the 31st. If the treat on the 30th wasn't good enough, the 31st was the night to get revenge by playing a trick. It almost seems as if the order of treating and tricking has become reversed.
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  #15  
Old 11-01-2001, 12:11 AM
astro astro is offline
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IIRC I think this may be an old world Eastern European custom. From high school circa 1972-76 I remember reading a story in English class about how a poor mother would be as obnoxious as possible on this "cabbage night" and the pranksters would throw huge quantiites of cabbage at her house which she would gather and store in the cellar for months on end and this would help see them through the winter.
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  #16  
Old 11-01-2001, 12:28 AM
D_Nice D_Nice is offline
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I to am from Northern Jersey (bergen county) and we refered to it as Cabbage Night as well. Nothing really serious ever went down. It was a very harmless and juvenile fun night. I recently moved to central Florida and there wasn't any signs of Cabbage Night occuring when I woke up this morning. I did take it upon myself to ask around, and it seems to be refered to as devil's night around here, but isn't really observed.
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  #17  
Old 11-01-2001, 05:21 AM
nineiron nineiron is offline
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I don't know about anyone else, but around here, on Beggar's Night (Cabbage Night, Devil's Night), there are certain stores that will not sell eggs to anyone under 18. Seriously. There are (or were) these huge town-wide egg fights (not in my town, but in a neighboring one).
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