What is Samhain?

Samhain (pronounced: sow-en) is a pagan holiday that is celebrated on October 31. It marks the end of Summer and the beginning of Winter.

In the past, Samhain was a festival for the time between the old year and the new year. It was a time for having bonfires and playing tricks. It was also thought a time when people could make contact with departed loved ones and foretell the future.

Today some people have special ceremonies on this day. Some people have parties and other people have special dinners.

One interesting dinner dish is called Colcannon. This dish is made of potatoes and cabbage. Items are put in the dish that are thought to tell the future. Traditionally these items are a thimble (for a spinster), a button (for a bachelor), a ring (for a marriage), and a coin (for prosperity).


The following recipe came from the Turning The Wheel site.


Colcannon: 4 cups mashed potatoes, 2 - 1/2 cups cabbage (cooked and chopped

fine), 1/2 cup butter, 3/4 cup onion (chopped very fine and sautéed), 1/4

teaspoon salt, 1/8 teaspoon pepper


Blend all ingredients (except cabbage) over low heat. Turn the heat to

medium and add cabbage (will be slightly green). Stir occasionally until warm

then add fortune items. Stir well.


Some people use decorations for their ceremonies or dinners. Fun things to use for decorating are autumn leaves or flowers, pumpkins, gourds, and autumn fruits and nuts. Candles also make pretty decorations for Samhain.


Some Decorations You Can Make For Samhain

Paper Twist Pumpkins

Sand Candles


The festival of Samhain has been celebrated for many years and is considered, by many, to be the origin of many Halloween traditions.





Bry-Back Manor/Holiday Fun