Authorities in the southern Chinese city of Guangzhou banned Halloween partygoers from wearing scary makeup and costumes when traveling by subway citing disruptions to the public. Local officials also set up a makeup removal booth for passengers wearing ghost or zombie-like makeup so that they clear their faces before boarding the subway.

"Today is the traditional western festival of Halloween," Guangzhou police wrote on China's biggest social network Sina Weibo, according to the state-run Global Times. The police further said that the Halloween partygoers should "not wear horrific makeup or dress up as ghosts in the subway. Violators who cause a disturbance will be held accountable by the public security [officials]."

Guangzhou authorities also have volunteers to help passengers who do not know how to take off their makeup. According to the local police, partygoers wearing Halloween costumes were likely to scare other passengers, the report added. Moreover, law enforcement also banned performance art on the Guangzhou subway.

Does China Celebrate Halloween?

Carved pumpkin for Halloween
Representational picture. Pixabay/Benjamin Balazs

China does not traditionally celebrate Halloween, which has its origins in the ancient Celtic festival of Samhain. Except for major cities with a sizeable expat population, Halloween is not popular in the country.

Chinese people who have American or British friends in the country organize private parties celebrate Halloween. Bars catering to expats in Beijing, Shanghai and Guangzhou get into the Halloween spirit by decorating the places with spooky items such as carved pumpkin, pictures of black cats and ghosts. Some bars also throw masquerade parties.

Halloween Celebrations in Wuhan

On Thursday, partygoers in Wuhan, where the novel coronavirus is believed to have originated, thronged at the Happy Valley Wuhan amusement park to celebrate Halloween early. Photos shared on social media showed people dressed as pirates, zombie nurses and superheroes and zombie nurses at the event without following social distancing guidelines.

China reportedly had 47 new COVID-19 cases on Thursday, while the rest of the countries grappled with an increasing number of coronavirus cases. According to Chinese authorities, no new cases of community transmission in Wuhan were recorded since May.