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Sat Oct 30, 2021, 09:12 AM

Tonight is Goosey Night

It's the night before Halloween, when kids and teenagers roam around soaping windows, ringing doorbells and then hiding, throwing toilet paper into trees and so on. Here's some information about it.

Excerpts by permission of the author, from her blog offeringstone

"If you grew up anyplace in the U.S. other than Passaic or Sussex (and possibly Bergen) counties in northern New Jersey, youíve probably never heard of Goosey Night. Goosey Night always takes place on the night before Halloween, October 30.

...

When I went to college some 40 miles south, in Middlesex County, I found out that Central Jersey folks called October 30 Mischief Night, and had never heard of Goosey Night. Some years later, in 1977, a magazine called N.J. Monthly published an article about the many localisms that distinguished the speech of New Jersey residents. Among other things, the article said you could tell what part of New Jersey someone grew up in by what they called the night before Halloween. I donít recall the details, but in some parts of New Jersey it was called Cabbage Night (Bergen County) or Tick Tack Night (Trenton area). Years later I read that this was called Devil Night in Detroit. Goosey Night was confined to Passaic and Sussex counties, and maybe a few spots in Bergen County. And none of us had the faintest idea where the name came from, or what it means.

...

Other names for Goosey Night include Corn Night*, Doorbell Night, Mickey Night*, Trick Night*, Miggy Night*, Mischievous Night*, Egg Night, Moving Night, Beggarís Night, Damage Night (Cincinnati, OH), Mat Night (Quebec, Canada), Mizzy Night (Liverpool, UK), and Hell Night. Those marked with asterisks come from Yorkshire, England, along with Tick Tack Night, mentioned earlier. Tick Tack Night has an interesting origin, having nothing whatever to do with tiny breath mints.

...

So where did the term Goosey Night come from? My best guess is that it evolved from the custom of guising or mumming, which dates back to the Middle Ages, when it usually took place during the Christmas season. Guising means dressing up in disguise."

https://offeringstone.wordpress.com/page/3/

10 replies, 353 views

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Always highlight: 10 newest replies | Replies posted after I mark a forum
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Arrow 10 replies Author Time Post
Reply Tonight is Goosey Night (Original post)
Wicked Blue Oct 30 OP
essaynnc Oct 30 #1
Donkees Oct 30 #5
Wicked Blue Oct 30 #8
essaynnc Oct 30 #9
SaveOurDemocracy Oct 30 #2
Wicked Blue Oct 30 #6
SaveOurDemocracy Oct 31 #10
Hoyt Oct 30 #3
abqtommy Oct 30 #4
Wicked Blue Oct 30 #7

Response to Wicked Blue (Original post)

Sat Oct 30, 2021, 09:46 AM

1. Cincinnati area,

Penny night, cabbage night, damage night, and my birthday!!!

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Response to essaynnc (Reply #1)

Sat Oct 30, 2021, 12:43 PM

5. Happy Damage Night Birthday!

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Response to essaynnc (Reply #1)

Sat Oct 30, 2021, 01:05 PM

8. Happy birthday!





I hadn't heard of Penny Night. In England they celebrate Guy Fawkes Night with bonfires around Nov. 5. Kids go around begging before the holiday, asking "a penny for the Guy". I wonder if there's a connection.

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Response to essaynnc (Reply #1)

Sat Oct 30, 2021, 01:39 PM

9. thank you both!!

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Response to Wicked Blue (Original post)

Sat Oct 30, 2021, 10:05 AM

2. Called mischief night where I grew up. 🎃

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Response to SaveOurDemocracy (Reply #2)

Sat Oct 30, 2021, 01:00 PM

6. Where did you grow up?

Central NJ?

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Response to Wicked Blue (Reply #6)

Sun Oct 31, 2021, 10:00 AM

10. Westchester Co., NY and later SE Pennsylvania.

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Response to Wicked Blue (Original post)

Sat Oct 30, 2021, 10:09 AM

3. Toilet paper is too scarce to use this year.

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Response to Wicked Blue (Original post)

Sat Oct 30, 2021, 12:28 PM

4. I'm 72 years old and this is one of the new things I've learned on DU today.

Thanks!

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Response to abqtommy (Reply #4)

Sat Oct 30, 2021, 01:04 PM

7. You're welcome

Are you going to go out and soap some windows tonight?

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