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Law in Virginia Town Forbids 14+ Year Olds to Trick-Or-Treat on Halloween

Little boy at halloween celebrations party. Child holds a bucket shaped like a halloween pumpkin jack o lantern. Halloween - traditional american holiday. - Image

Wait, what the heck? I’ve heard of kids who grow out or don’t grow out of the trick-or-treating phase, but get this: the town of Chesapeake, Virginia makes it illegal for anyone 14 years old and older to go door-to-door collecting candy on Halloween.

That, my friends, is possibly one of the most bizarre laws I have ever heard.

If you see here in Section 46-8 in Article I, any person over 14 years caught collecting candy “shall be guilty of a Class 4 misdemeanor.” And as if this doesn’t get any worse. Anyone trick-or-treating past 8:00pm will also be guilty of a Class 4 misdemeanor.

Image courtesy of Chesapeake, VA Code of Ordinances

What in the actual heck?

Well, first, let’s back track here. The law was implemented back in 1968 when a series of dangerous trick-or-treating events unfolded, including people finding firecrackers placed in their goodie bags. The fear of such behavior prompted this unusual law, which was later refined earlier in March this year. The recent alterations to the law caught the attention of many across the country, leaving many angered by such an irrational enforcement. Even Jimmy Kimmel weighed in his thoughts on the silliness.

Despite the law, here’s what bothers me the most: Fox News says no one has been arrested, jailed, or fined since the ordinance came into effect. Those older than 14 years of age act as if the law never happened and continue their ways of trick-or-treating to carry on the Halloween tradition.

So… I really don’t get it. What’s all the fuss about it? Get over it, Chesapeake. It’s been 49 years.

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Vivian Wang

Vivian is a travel enthusiast and food connoisseur living in New York City whose curiosity and passion for languages and culture has taken her across eight countries over the past year. When not writing, she can be found snacking on street food or wandering in a museum.

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