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Halloween ’17: It’s trick-or-treating time again!

If it’s October, this must be Shepherd Park Halloween!

First things first. As in past years since 2004, we’re compiling a list of homes in the neighborhood that will give candy to young trick-or-treaters. We tend to get more than 100 addresses, and we split it between “East of 16th Street” and “West of 16th Street” to make it easier for the kids, but especially for parents. If you know you’ll be handing out treats this year, send me a email with your address at pattison_mark@hotmail.com.

Second things second. Also since 2004, we’ve conducted a pumpkin and house decorating contest. You’ve got plenty of time to decide if you want to enter. Since Halloween falls on a Tuesday, we’ll conduct the judging sometime the previous weekend (details TBD). But if you’ve got that urge to carve up jack o’ lanterns, send me an email with your name and address at pattison_mark@hotmail.com.

Second-and-half-things second-and-a-half. To judge a decorating contest, we need judges. It doesn’t matter whether you have decorating skills, but judging skills come in handy. And who among us hasn’t been judgmental at some point? If you believe you’d be free to judge at some point during the weekend of Oct. 28-29, send me an email at — hmmm, where? — oh! pattison_mark@hotmail.com.

Grand finale! The coup de resistance is the annual Halloween Parade, which was started in 2004 to demonstrate to ourselves and to the world beyond us that Shepherd Park is a safe and fun place to be for kids. The parade takes place on Halloween itself — Tuesday, Oct. 31 — at Shepherd Field, aka the “lower field” next to Shepherd Elementary. Thanks to our baby boom, we find it necessary to do TWO parades. The first will start at 6 p.m. sharp, for our littlest residents, in first grade and younger. The second parade will start after the first one has concluded, for kids in second grade and up. We’ll distribute paper copies of the trick-or-treat list prior to the parade, and it’ll also contain the addresses of the decorating contest entrants. If you can help with glow-stick assembly, list and candy distribution, let me know at pattison_mark@hotmail.com. Just show up a half-hour before the parade and you’ll be in like Flynn!

Mark Pattison

SPCA president

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