Okay, what's the difference and what's the point?
When I was growing up, our school had a Halloween carnival every year with a cake walk and I don't remember what else. It was always the last Saturday of the month of October and it was so fun. Our town always had a Halloween parade and then we would go to the carnival and then over to the Main Street Fair, also tons of fun. But the Main Street Fair lost its allure several years ago and has now moved to some sort of Christmas something or other.
My mother felt like only religious fanatics didn't celebrate Halloween and we certainly weren't fanatics. I remember as a youth in youth group watching a video about devil worship on Halloween. I walked away with the impression that Halloween was okay as long as you weren't worshipping the devil. That was really the church's only statement on the whole sordid affair, to my knowledge anyway.
And now, many, many churches are having "Fall Festivals". Well, what is the difference between that and the old-fashioned Halloween carnivals? Hayride? Check. Bobbing for apples? Check. Costumes? Check. Candy? Check. Confetti eggs? Check. It's still the same time of the year (even the same weekend). So what's the point? Why are we even bothering to call it a Fall Festival? Just call it a Halloween Carnival and be done with it. It's the exact same thing.
Don't get me wrong...I don't really have a problem with it either way, except that doesn't really feel right either. It seems almost inbred in me that as Christians we are supposed to hate Halloween because that's the Enemy's holiday. But there's something in me that is just bucking the system on that one.
I think if you want to have a real Fall Festival, have it in November where you're less likely to fall out from heatstroke and less likely to make the lost think that the church is finally condoning Halloween. Even unbelievers know what a Fall Festival held on the last weekend of October is.