Halloween isn’t only for the young. Just ask any Highland County Senior Citizens Center member who worked Saturday at the center’s annual Halloween party.
“I didn’t work this year, but I did last year and brought a 13-year-old and the thing to her was that these old people really like this,” one of about 20 ladies playing bingo at the center Monday afternoon said. “It opened her eyes to the fact that there are a lot of people who really care. She said, ‘Look at that lady. She’s all dressed up and everything. She is really into this.’”
Some said they work events like to the Halloween party to help the center. Some said they do it because it’s fun. Others said they like to see kids’ reaction.
“I like being around the people and seeing how the kids dress up. And it’s safer for the kids,” another of the ladies said.
Geri Williamson said she likes helping the center and seeing the community come out to support it.
“If it wasn’t for the fundraisers and all the things we have here, the doors wouldn’t be open,” Williamson said.
She said even people representing the 26 businesses and organizations that passed out candy for the trick or treat portion of the party were impressed. She said a person representing Frisch’s and dressed as the Big Boy mascot asked her all sorts of questions about the event, then passed out Big Boy coupons to all the senior center members and board members who were working at the party. She said a Kroger representative also asked lots of questions.
“It think it opens the eyes of the businesses to see what all we have going on here,” Williamson said.
Nearly 700 people paid the $1 admission price for this year’s party. The admission included a trip through a haunted house, a light dinner of a hot dog, potato chips and a drink, trick or treating with 26 local businesses and organizations passing out candy, costume contests, games, and a chance for kids to knock open a pinata.
Mechell Frost, the center’s executive director, said the center made $718 on the event, including 32 individuals who paid an extra dollar to go through the haunted house twice. That was down a little from the 749 that paid the admission price a year ago, but still a good turnout, Frost said. She said rain that fell as some people waited in line might have been a factor. All the money made from the event is profit because local businesses sponsor it.
“I think it went well. We had a lot of people that said it was a good time and a great event,” Frost said.
Jessica Riddle posted this comment on the senior center’s website: “We had a great time at the Halloween party this weekend. Tons of things to do for the kids. Thanks for being so community-oriented and planning these events. This one was a success.”
The senior center has three more public events planned before the end of the year.
There will be a Veterans Day Dinner from 5-7 p.m. Friday, Nov. 6. The dinner is free for veterans and $5 for anyone else. All proceeds go to Hillsboro VFW Post 9094 to support Highland County veterans in need.
There will be Turkey Bingo on Saturday, Nov. 14. Lunch will be available for purchase from noon to 1 p.m., then bingo will be played for turkeys and pies from 1-4 p.m. The cost is 25-cents per card, per game, and only those 18 or older can play. There will also be a cake walk.
Breakfast with Santa and Winter Wonderland will be from 8 a.m. to 1 p.m. Saturday, Dec. 5. Admission is $5 for those 2 or older and and $3 for anyone 23 months or younger. Admission includes breakfast, games, raffles, “Frozen” and other characters like the Grinch, a photo with Santa, a Winter Wonderland that includes a forest of Christmas trees with an indoor snow machine and snow pit, and more.
Reach Jeff Gilliland at 937-402-2522 or on Twitter @13gillilandj.