Is Devil’s Night Still a Thing in Michigan?
Devil's Night is very unique to Detroit and Michigan, but has it gone away?
Michiganders, especially those from Detroit, are very familiar with Devil's Night. However, Devil's Night isn't very widely known outside the Mitten. Sure, some people in the midwest might have an idea, but outside of that people have no idea what you are talking about.
Devil's Night, which falls on October 30th, first started in the Detroit area in the 1930s and 1940s. Typically the night consisted of kids causing some ruckus with minor pranks like egging, leaving rotten vegetables or flaming bags of poop on porches, TP'ing house, and the like.
However, in the 1970s things took a turn for the worst as those pranks escalate into widespread arson, vandalism, and other more serious crimes. In 1984 alone, over 800 fires were set in Detroit and surrounding areas. This prompted the establishment of Angel's Night.
With the start of Angel's Night in 1995, thousands and thousands of volunteers began to patrol the city and neighborhoods in Detroit to try and stop the crime and the plan worked as cases of arson and other things dropped in the years to follow. In 2018, support for Angel's Night ended as the destructive crime dropped to almost nothing on Devil's night. In fact, only three structure fires were recorded on October 30th, 2021.
I grew up just outside of Detroit and Devil's Night was a serious thing. As kids, we would absolutely sneak out to go egg or TP someone's house that we knew and wanted to prank. However, we would also return the next day to help clean up as it was all in good fun. It was fun for us, but we didn't know how bad the night really was in Detroit and other areas that saw real problems from Devil's Night.
Nowadays, it doesn't even seem like Devil's Night is a thing anymore, and that it honestly a good thing in my opinion!
Even though Devil's Night is pretty much a Michigan thing, there are other states that have similar nights that aren't as troublesome. Throughout the U.S. and Canada, their versions go by names like Mischief Night, Gate Night, Goosey Night, Moving Night, Cabbage Night, and more. Yea, I'll break them down for you below.
- Mischief Night happens in New Jersey, New Orleans, Philly, Delaware, Connecticut, New York, and other small pockets in the United States.
- In Baltimore, the night is known as Moving Night because apparently, they like to exchange or steal furniture from porches. Sorry Baltimore, you're dumb.
- In Ontario, Canada, and some states in the U.S., the night is referred to as Cabbage Night because kids take rotten cabbages and toss them around their neighborhood. Again, dumb.
- Click here to see more.
Either way, I'm glad that we don't have to worry too much about anyone being destructive on Devil's Night. It is awesome to see what can really happen when volunteers, neighbors, families, friends, officials, and more all say that enough is enough and take a stand!