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10/24/2013 Celebrating Halloween!

School carnival this Saturday kicks off boo-week

Halloween may only be one week away, but the Custer County School, CART, merchants and the sheriff’s department are already making holiday plans.

For an early celebration, the school is holding its annual Halloween carnival on Saturday, October 26. Held in the west gym, high school classes come up with booth ideas for games and contests. Tickets cost 25 cents, and each booth typically requires three or four tickets to participate.

"There will be all kinds of stuff," said football coach Troy Bomgardner. "There will be typical carnival activities, like bob for apples. All of it is for elementary-aged kids."

One of the high school classes is also expected to turn a room into a haunted house.

"It is a very big deal," Bomgardner insisted. "Students from all over come for it. There have even been kids from Cotopaxi show up before."

Prior to the carnival, the school will be serving a chili supper from 5 p.m. to 7 p.m. in the Multi-purpose Room. The supper costs $5 per adult and only $3 for children.

There will be a costume contest on the stage during the dinner at 6:30 p.m. Proceeds from the chili supper will go toward the music program.

Then the carnival will allow the little goblins and ghouls through its doors at 7 p.m. and will stay open until 9 p.m.

Bomgardner said the carnival is an important fundraising event for the classes. Carnival proceeds go to the high school student council and the high school class budgets.

The Middle School History Club is also holding a fun Halloween event. The public is welcome to participate in their annual Ghost Walk through the Silver Cliff cemetery on Friday, November 1. The walk will begin at 5 p.m. and go until 7 p.m.

Hot chocolate, coffee and cookies will be provided. Students are excited to portray residents from the past for your educational pleasure. Donations will assist in the club’s spring field trip to historical sites in Colo.

The school isn’t the only place Halloween fun can be found, though. Local merchants up and down Main Street are also making holiday plans, both for the annual trick-or-treat crowd and their not-so-small customers too.

Chappy’s Bar and Grill, Somewhere Saloon, and Maverick’s are holding a Halloween Crawl Costume Contest on Saturday, October 26.

"It will start at Maverick’s," said Somewhere Saloon manager Amanda Baggett. "Their costume contest will begin at 8:30 p.m."

Chappy’s will have their costume contest at 9:30 p.m., and the crawl will end at Somewhere Saloon’s costume contest at 11 p.m. The first, second, and third place winners will be decided based on points collected from each contest.

"Each establishment has their own judges," Baggett said. "And there will be lots of prizes. There will also be the Donovan Lee Band at the Somewhere Saloon."

On Halloween night, October 31, almost all of the merchants in Westcliffe and Silver Cliff will hand out candy.

Jay Printz, from Loan A Ranger, said he will be outside, in costume, handing out treats.

"We’re having a costume contest that night," Printz said. "But the winning costume has to be handmade."

Sharon Attebery, from the Sunflower Patch, expressed how excited she is to give out candy like she does every year.

"I really enjoy seeing all of the little kids dressed up," Attebery said. "It’s so much fun to see their expressions go from hesitant to excitement when they get their candy."

Most stores and businesses will hand out candy between 4 and 6 p.m., though many mentioned that they will continue handing out candy until the vampires and werewolves stop showing up.

All businesses who participate in the Halloween Walk will be recognized by trick-or-treaters from an orange sign on their doors or windows. Merchants can call Angie Arterburn at 783-2099.The Cliffs’ Action Revitalization Team (CART) is adding additional activities to the celebrations, too. Hot cider will be served at Edwardo’s, Somewhere Saloon, Have a Nice Day Café, and Chappy’s.

CART is also holding a costume contest for the merchants.

"CART members will be outside," said CART representative Kathy Reis, "dressed up, and handing out sheets for people to vote on the best dressed merchant."

Ballots can be dropped off at a clearly marked box inside Have a Nice Day Café or at Antler’s Liquor store. If questions arise that Halloween night, Kathy Reis can be found at either destination dressed up as Tiny Winky, the purple teletubby.

CART members will also be handing out coupons for the local businesses in an effort to bring more customers into town.

CART has asked the Custer County Historical and Genealogical Society to do a Ghost Walk on Main Street. The tour will visit local haunts.

"I would just like to give another reminder out to parents," said Sheriff Jobe, "to be mindful of your children. They are small, and when they are dressed in dark outfits they will be even harder to see at night if they go running across the street."

The Sheriff insisted that there is no time too early to get people ready for Halloween.

"I would like to remind drivers to take it slow," Sheriff Jobe said. "When the events start and the kids get excited, the current speed limits on Main Street are not sufficient. You need to go much slower than what is posted."

There will be extra patrols and posse members out for Halloween night to keep vandalism down.

"It is usually quiet," Sheriff Jobe said, "but we put extra patrol out to keep it quiet."

-J.E. Ward