In the week before Easter, our Swedish witches fly on their broomsticks, usually with a coffee kettle made of copper and a black cat, to Blue Island to meet up & dance with the Devil.
So, naturally, children dress up as witches and go from house to house – Trick or Treat style – and beg for candy on Maundy Thursday.
When I was a kid we also offered a song or two for the presumptive candy giver, but that effort seems to have gone out of style. Sometimes nowadays the little buggers offer a drawing or an “Easter Letter”, i e a small piece of wrinkled paper with the words Glad Påsk (Happy Easter) written in their own hand. If they are too young to write, there may be a drawing of a stick-figure chicken or a something supposed to look like a daffodil.
When Hallmark sold us on the Halloween idea, Swedish kids instantly took to the habit in order to double their candy harvest; conveniently spread out over the year. But it’s a pretty new tradition and most people get confused when October 31 falls on a week-night (Can’t we go trick-or-treating on Saturday instead?). At least Maundy Thursday is always on a Thursday!