Spine-tingling stats

Break out the spider webs, pumpkins and fake blood—it’s that time of year again. Halloween was started by the Celts 2,000 years ago as a new-year celebration. They believed that on the last day of the year (theirs started on Nov. 1), the boundary between the living and the dead was blurred. These days we use it as an excuse to dress up and eat sweets (well, most of us, anyway). In the spirit of Halloween, here are some frightening facts. Break out the candy, watch Jamie Lee Curtis get chased around by a madman and read on.

First in the U.S.: Halloween was first celebrated in this country in Anoka, Minn., in 1921.

Trick-or-treat: Last year there were about 36 million potential trick-or-treaters in the U.S. The number keeps going down.

Aaarrrr: Thanks to Johnny Depp, you can expect lots of pirates to be roaming the streets this year. Swashbuckler costumes rank No. 2 for both kids and adults. (No. 1 for kids is princesses, and for adults, it’s witches.)

Frightfest: Last year, Hollywood.com put together a list of the best horror flicks of all time. No. 1—Jaws. Also on the list were The Exorcist, The Sixth Sense and Alien.

We love Jack: Jack ‘O Lantern, that is. Between carving faces and making pies, at least 1.1 billion pounds of pumkin products were produced last year. California was in the big leagues, putting out 100 million of those pounds.

Mmm, candy: Last year, Americans gobbled up 26 pounds of yummy goodness.

Sources: www.census.gov, www.nrf.com, www.history.com