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Good Question: Why Do We Dress Up For Halloween?

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(credit: CBS) John Lauritsen
John Lauritsen is a reporter from Montevideo, Minn. He joined WCCO-...
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MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) – This Halloween, families are expected to spend nearly $8 billion celebrating the holiday.

That’s a 50 percent jump since just 2005. And a lot of the money is going to costumes.

Americans spend about a $1 billion on children’s costumes each year, and another $1.2 billion on adult costumes.

How it all got started dates back to the Middle Ages.

For the folks at the Theatrical Costume Rental in Minneapolis, 20 percent of their yearly business is done during the month of October. Duck Dynasty, What Does the Fox Say and Jack Sparrow are just a few popular costumes this year.

Brian Berberich of Theatrical Costume has pagan tradition to thank for his business, a tradition that began centuries ago.

“People on the 31st of October would dress in frightening costumes to scare off the evil spirits,” Berberich said.

Later, the Catholic Church created All Saints Day on Nov. 1, and Oct. 31 then was looked at by many as a way to celebrate and honor the dead.

Now, 43 percent of people dress up for the holiday, and $2.5 billion are spent on costumes alone.

Another $370 million will be spent on pet costumes.

The average adult will spend about $28 on their costume this year.

And nowadays, many costume ideas come from Pinterest, Twitter, Facebook and pop culture.

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