News & Politics

The Bidens Won’t Host Trick-or-Treaters at the White House This Year

The White House, decorated for Halloween in October 2016. Photograph by rarrarorro via iStock.

Trick-or-treaters won’t get an audience with the President this year: Joe Biden and Jill Biden will head to Europe Thursday for several confabs with world leaders, including the United Nations Climate Change Conference scheduled to begin this weekend in Glasgow, Scotland. The White House will be lit in orange, Jill Biden spokesperson Michael LaRosa said in a statement, but it won’t host any specific Halloween events.

Presidents and their families have held trick-or-treating events on the White House grounds for decades. The Kennedys ushered in public events, the White House Historical Association says in a terrific mini-history. The Nixons really blew it out on Halloween, once turning the building’s north entrance into the mouth of a pumpkin and inviting celebrities such as Jonathan Frid, who played Barnabas Collins on Dark Shadows. Both the Obamas and the Trumps brought schoolkids and children from military families in for trick-or-treating. This year, LaRosa says, the first family “encourages families and children to celebrate Halloween with trick or treating outdoors in their neighborhoods or other outdoor venues.”

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Andrew Beaujon joined Washingtonian in late 2014. He was previously with the Poynter Institute,, and Washington City Paper. His book A Bigger Field Awaits Us: The Scottish Soccer Team That Fought the Great War was published in 2018. He lives in Del Ray.