PLEASANTVILLE, NJ (October 31, 2017) – With so many smiling children, it’s hard to believe Halloween is a scary and spooky holiday.
That was the scene Friday, Oct. 27, 2017, when the City of Pleasantville held its Annual Halloween Party at the Pleasantville Recreation Center, drawing out scores of local families to the yearly affair.
Parents and children under 12 at the two-hour event delighted in showing off their costumes, enjoying games and feasting on treats in a safe and friendly environment.
“It’s so great for the community,” Deborah L. Washington, Pleasantville Superintendent of Recreation, said. “It’s safe for the children and it’s relieving for the parents — you see familiar faces and you know where the candy is coming from.”
Washington, one of the main organizers of the event, said she planned for about 250 people to attend.
The Halloween Party has been a yearly staple in the city for more than 20 years, she said, with decorations turning a gymnasium into something more in line with a haunted house.
Activities at the party included eight game stations, a photobooth-like setup for parents to snap pictures of their cloaked-up kids; and, of course, lots of candy.
Game stations were manned by individuals in the community, as well as local groups including TriCare Medical Transportation and Dr. Bunting’s after-school STEM Program.
A costume contest saw children vying for prizes in categories such as scariest, most original and cutest outfits.
Local Pleasantville mom Edna Long brought her 8-year-old son Stephen out for their annual tradition. The duo arrived in style, outfitted in oversized M&M candy costumes Edna had created herself out of red fabric.
“It’s such a safe environment – it really makes me feel more comfortable being here than going door-to-door,” Long said.
With Halloween his favorite holiday, Stephen had a blast going booth to booth, collecting candy and prizes along the way.
“It’s so much fun — this is my favorite time of year,” the younger Long said, showing off the candy he had collected and stashed in his costume’s kangaroo-like pocket.
City Councilman Rick Cistrunk, another avowed Halloween fan, said he liked what he saw at the festive affair.
“Bottom line: it brings Pleasantville together,” Cistrunk said. “It builds the camaraderie of the community.”
(Volunteers provided games and other festive Halloween activities for local youth to enjoy Friday, Oct. 27, 2017 at Pleasantville’s Annual Halloween Party.)
Pictured are Pleasantville resident Cherelle Whetstone with her son Lamar, age 9 (left), and daughter Mikaela, 2 (right.)