Community treats are trick to family friendly festivities

Published 5:25 pm Tuesday, October 24, 2023

By Lanell Downs Smith

When I was a little girl, my school hosted a Halloween carnival each year. Full of all the games and fun one expects from a fall festival style event, the carnival was the highlight of every October.

My family lived in a rural community, where houses are sometimes miles apart. It wasn’t possible to walk door-to-door for trick or treating and so the carnival provided children like my sister and I with a safe, fun-filled alternative.

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That carnival and the school have been gone for many years, but my fond memories of playing “Go fish” for bags of what kids today call “old-fashioned” candy and participating in a cake walk to win the prize chocolate cake still remain fresh.

It warms my heart to see the modern-day equivalent – fall festivals and trunk or treat – being hosted by community churches, organizations and businesses. Children in our small-town and rural communities still need safe, family-friendly activities to kick off the holiday season, and what better way to do it than to bring citizens, and candy, together for our children.

Our newspaper’s community calendar is full of such events, beginning this week and carrying on through the beginning of November. Families need only pick one, or several of the any events designed to please children of all ages.

I used to tell my daughters that I wished we could bring back the Halloween carnival I so enjoyed in the late 1970s and early 1980s, but I have stopped saying it. Instead, I marvel at the many events communities are hosting for the children and I believe they have more to enjoy now than ever before.

Keep up the good work. After all, it’s for the children. And know that you are making warm and fuzzy memories that will last the test of time, remaining long after the candy has been consumed.