By Kim Hutchison
Going door to door is such a major part of the fun and excitement of Halloween, but the safety of the candy tiny trick-or-treaters receive and the weather they are forced to endure are often major concerns. Also, when the designated candy collecting hours do come to an end for all those participating, most of the older children are still looking for something to do. This year, the Ponoka Youth Centre held a “safe” Halloween party for children of all ages that held the answer to both.
One portion of the centre was a spooky haunted house that could be toured for free and another portion was designated for activities that could be enjoyed for the small fee of $1 with all proceeds collected going to the United Way. Non-perishable food items for the Ponoka Food Bank were being accepted as well.
Activities included candy apple, bat and spider sucker making and a magic show by magician Kyle Key. There was also a RCMP safety talk reinforcing the importance of how to properly cross the street and how to make costumes more visible to vehicles amongst many other precautions to keep in mind on the busy night. Each child also received a Tim Horton’s bag full of safe treats donated from local suppliers the whole community supports.
“The safe Halloween is a safe alternate to trick-or-treating,” said volunteer for the evening Karie Ackerman of Ponoka Victim Services. “We spend so much time teaching children not to accept candy from strangers, then one a day a year that’s exactly what we tell them to go ahead and do. Here, they get a full bag of safe candy and don’t have to worry about being out in the cold,” she said.
Kids who wanted to trick-or-treat were more than welcome to head to the centre for some entertainment when they were finished as well.