Halloween celebrated in parks

Wednesday, October 31, 2012
Photos by Karen Hall and Poppy Hall Check inside on A8 for many more Halloween pictures!

By Karen Hall

Staff Writer

Small towns at the south end of the county held highly successful Halloween celebrations last weekend, in spite of the weather, which suddenly turned cool and breezy.

Petersburg Parks and Rec went first on Friday afternoon, holding a Halloween Spooktacular Party in the Park. The shelter at Morgan Park was turned into a place for food and games, while outside costumed children jumped in a pile of leaves, and volunteer firefighters prepared s'mores over an open fire.

Also outside, a terrifying zombie Santa presided over the punkin' chunkin' area, where children hurled small pumpkins at a target for a chance at a prize.

Inside the shelter the games included bowling pumpkins at a stack of rolls of toilet paper, throwing darts to pop balloons, and bobbing for apples. Instead of floating in a tub of water, the apples hung from strings at various heights, so all a child had to do was walk up and bite one, though it was more difficult than it sounds.

A steady stream of cars unloaded costumed children of all ages, the older ones ready to see and be seen in their finery, while the younger ones were more interested in games and trick-or-treating.

Only a few cars were backed in to the Trunk-or-Treat spaces, and that's one thing organizer Bridgette Smith hopes to change for next year.

"It went very well for a first year," Smith said. "We learned a lot. It was a larger turnout than we expected."

She estimated they had 200 to 300 people at the event, and explained Petersburg is working to do something every season to bring families to town and develop a sense of community. Their next event is a tree-trimming party on Dec. 1, followed a week later by the Christmas parade.

Cornersville Lions Club has been holding Halloween in the Park for a number of years, with turnouts as high as 1,000 people.

"It's a great thing," said town recorder Scotty Brock. "A lot of hard work goes into putting it on."

Trick-or-Treat was done in the traditional way Saturday afternoon. A whole group of adults and costumed children promenaded down Mulberry Street, visiting houses that had gone all out with their Halloween decorations. At the park itself, there was a costume contest and fortune telling by "Miss Fortune," who was set up in a black plastic tent. Children played seasonal variations of cornhole games, throwing beanbags at holes cut in Halloween figures, and rolls of toilet paper into old commodes.

Strictly speaking, children of Petersburg and Cornersville have done their Trick-or-Treating for the year, but they may persuade their parents to let the zombies, princesses and super heroes make another round of neighborhood homes and collect a few more treats.