The 25 Most-Searched Halloween Costumes of 2019

evgenyatamanenko/iStock via Getty Images
evgenyatamanenko/iStock via Getty Images

Whether hunting for the perfect Halloween costume is your favorite sport or not, there’s a good chance you’re dressing up this year to some degree—and maybe you’ve even Googled around for costume ideas.

To see which costumes are ruling search bars this year, Google created Frightgeist, a website that analyzed Google Trends data to compile a list of the most-searched Halloween costumes during September.

Unsurprisingly, It and Stranger Things both made the list of terms, as did other pop culture bigwigs like Spider-Man, Chucky, and Fortnite. However, plenty of people still want to masquerade as less-trademarked characters: Witches were the runner-up to It, and dinosaurs, unicorns, rabbits, pirates, and mice all made the top 15.

There’s also a significant demographic of people who were likely inspired by what they’ve seen in movies and television series, but didn’t want to imitate it exactly: 1980s, clowns, and superheroes are all in the top 25.

The stats for couples’ costumes, though completely different, are another blend of high-profile pop culture icons and more generic Halloween classics. Google shared with us that Lilo and Stitch took the number one spot, followed by Bonnie and Clyde and then The Fairly Oddparents’ Cosmo and Wanda. The Bible is big this year, too: Adam and Eve and “angel and devil” both hit the top 15.

Toy Story 4 certainly seemed to leave a lasting impression on movie theater audiences everywhere. Not only did Toy Story come in at number 17 on the overall most-searched list, but Woody and Jessie took the number 12 spot on the couples’ list, and Forky and Bo Peep have both been on the rise since January of this year.

Though the It franchise may have outshined Pennywise as an individual on the main list, he’s apparently quite a popular costume idea when it comes to babies and dogs—the homicidal clown took the number four spot on both lists.

Browse the full list of 25 hottest costume searches below, and check out some of the best bargains in the Halloween costume market here.

  1. It

  1. Witch

  1. Spider-Man

  1. Dinosaur

  1. The Descendants

  1. Clown

  1. Fortnite

  1. Chucky

  1. 1980s

  1. Unicorn

  1. Rabbit

  1. Pirate

  1. Stranger Things

  1. Mouse

  1. Harley Quinn

  1. Superhero

  1. Toy Story

  1. Princess

  1. Doll

  1. Mermaid

  1. Devil

  1. Ninja

  1. Vampire

  1. Cheerleader

  1. Bear

How 7 Places Around the World Celebrate Thanksgiving

wiesdie/iStock via Getty Images Plus
wiesdie/iStock via Getty Images Plus

Thanksgiving seems like a holiday that's as American as apple pie, or pumpkin pie for that matter. But actually, there are variants of this day all around the world. Their meanings, dates, and customs may vary, but they all revolve around the concept of gratitude.

1. Germany

A religious holiday that often takes place on the first Sunday of October, Erntedankfest is essentially a harvest festival that gives thanks for a good year and good fortune. In rural areas, the harvest aspect might be taken more literally, but churches in cities also hold festivities. This might include a procession with an Erntekrone, a harvest crown made of grain, flowers, and fruit. Although turkeys are making inroads, fattened up chickens (die Masthähnchen), hens (die Poularde), castrated roosters (der Kapaun), and geese (die Gans) are favored for the feast.

2. Japan

Kinrō Kansha no Hi is a national public holiday that Japan celebrates every November 23. Derived from ancient harvest festival rituals named Niinamesai, its modern meaning is more tied to a celebration of hard work and community involvement, hence its translation: Labor Thanksgiving Day. While Niinamesai's traditions reach back thousands of years, Kinrō Kansha no Hi was created officially in 1948. It was intended to celebrate the rights of workers in post-World War II Japan. Today it’s celebrated with labor organization-led festivities, and children creating crafts and gifts for local police officers.

3. Canada

Arising from the same European origins of harvest festivals that led to the United States's version, Canadian Thanksgiving was first celebrated in 1578, when English explorer Martin Frobisher gave thanks for his fleet's safe travels in present-day Nunavut. Parliament made it a national holiday in 1879. But in 1957, Parliament moved it from November 6, declaring, "A Day of General Thanksgiving to Almighty God for the bountiful harvest with which Canada has been blessed."

4. Grenada

The West Indian island's version of Thanksgiving shares no origin with America's, and yet would not exist without the United States. Held on October 25 every year, Grenada's Thanksgiving marks the anniversary of the 1983 U.S. military invasion to restore order after the death of socialist leader Maurice Bishop. American soldiers who were stationed in the country the following month told locals about their upcoming Thanksgiving holiday, its signature feast, and its intention to focus on gratitude. To show their own gratitude, the people of Grenada worked in secret to surprise the soldiers with meals like those they longed for, complete with turkey and all the fixings. Today, the holiday is celebrated in formal ceremonies of remembrance.

5. Liberia

A variation on America's Thanksgiving can be found in the West African nation of Liberia, which was founded in the 19th century by freed slaves from the U.S. The holiday is celebrated primarily by Christians on the first Thursday of November. Liberians fill their churches with baskets of local fruits like bananas, papayas, mangoes, and pineapples; an auction for the baskets is held after the service, and then families retreat to their homes to feast. Concerts and dancing have evolved as a distinctive part of Liberia's Thanksgiving traditions.

6. The Netherlands

Before the Pilgrims boarded the Mayflower for the New World, they lived in Leiden in the Netherlands, where they settled after leaving England to escape religious persecution. They lived and worked in Leiden from 1609 to 1620. The Dutch have claimed influence on several elements of colonial American life from this contact, including civil marriages, ladder-back chairs, and wood-planked house construction. Some even suggest the Pilgrims’ Thanksgiving found inspiration in Leiden's annual commemoration of the breaking of the Spanish siege of 1574. Regardless, the people of Leiden still celebrate the American settlers who once lived there with a non-denominational church service on the fourth Thursday of November. Afterwards, cookies and coffee are offered [PDF].

7. Norfolk Island

Like Grenada, this small and remote Pacific Island that sits between Australia and New Zealand owes its Thanksgiving to contact with the U.S., specifically with its whalers in the mid-1890s. It began when American trader Isaac Robinson proposed decorating the All Saints Church with palm leaves and lemons, hoping to attract whalers to a Thanksgiving service/celebration. Though Robinson passed away before the following Thanksgiving, the tradition caught on. Now on the last Wednesday of November, families bring fruit and vegetables to the church to celebrate, tying cornstalks to pews, and decorating the altar with fresh flowers. Where they would once recollect their offerings afterwards, now these are sold to raise money for the church.

Food for Fines: Many Communities Let Residents Pay Parking Tickets With Canned Food Donations

Warren_Price/iStock via Getty Images
Warren_Price/iStock via Getty Images

Depending on where you live, paying off your parking tickets could be a chance to give back to the underserved members of your community this holiday season. Towns, cities, and universities across the country are embracing food for fines programs: initiatives that allow residents to settle their parking debts by donating non-perishable food items.

Accepting canned goods in lieu of cash parking ticket payments isn't a new practice. Lexington, Kentucky has been running holiday food for fines drives since 2013. Even in larger cities, like Las Vegas, such programs have proven successful. Recently in Muncie, Indiana, the local police department used it as an opportunity to collect pet supplies instead of pantry staples.

The model has become more popular in recent years, and this holiday season, it will be easier than ever to find a food for fines program near you. In Bay Village, Ohio, a city located about 15 miles west of Cleveland, officials are looking for non-perishables to provide to the local Bay Food Ministry. Individual items are worth $5 in owed parking fines, with the town waiving up to $25 per person.

Universities are also hopping on board the trend. At the University of Colorado Boulder, students can donate five items to have their parking tickets forgiven. Bloomsburg University in Pennsylvania has already collected more than 100 cans from students through its own food for fines program.

Many of the initiatives will run through this Friday and conclude ahead of Thanksgiving week, so if you have a parking ticket you need to pay off, contact your local parking services office soon to see if it's participating.

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