Do Russians Celebrate Halloween?

Generally speaking the answer is no; however, it has been gaining in popularity in recent years. Most often, if recognized, it is in the form of a private or school party. Don't look for Russian children to be going door to door, trick or treating anytime soon.

Halloween is supposed to be a fun fall holiday, but for kids who are experiencing it for the first time it can be scary and overwhelming. Proceed with caution with young children, especially those who have recently been adopted. All the scary aspects of Halloween may be magnified in children who have no experience in seeing monsters of any kind and for those raised on tales of "Baba Yaga." It may seem like the stuff of nightmares has came to life.

In Slavic folktales, Baba Yaga is often seen as a witch who flies around on a giant mortar, has iron teeth, kidnaps (and eats) small children, and lives in a house on chicken feet that can move around by itself. Misbehaving children are often told that if they do not behave, Baba Yaska will come and get them. 

Although she is mostly portrayed as a terrifying old woman, Baba Yaga is sometimes a helper and wise woman who gives advice and magical gifts to heroes and the pure of heart. Just remember if you make a deal with this crafty creature, she will expect you to hold up to your end of the bargain. To see more about Baba Yaga, see

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