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Paulding Trick or Treat Village returns Saturday
by Tom Spigolon
October 23, 2013 10:59 AM | 2478 views | 0 0 comments | 23 23 recommendations | email to a friend | print
Special Photo<br>Paulding County Parks and Recreation director Michael Justus, right, sits with a participant in last year’s Trick or Treat Village.
Special Photo
Paulding County Parks and Recreation director Michael Justus, right, sits with a participant in last year’s Trick or Treat Village.
A few Paulding County government workers wanted to give local children an alternative place for Halloween trick-or-treating in 1997. They were expecting 200 children that night – and got 1,500.

This year, organizers are expecting thousands to take part in the 17th annual Trick or Treat Village Saturday at Earl Duncan Park at Paulding Meadows, said Tena Eddy, program coordinator for Paulding Parks and Recreation.

“Each year it’s grown bigger and bigger,” she said.

The free event is scheduled from 2 p.m. to 7 p.m. at the park at 724 Paulding Meadows Drive in Dallas. and is open to the public.

Groups ranging from government workers to civic organizations, churches and private companies will be giving out candy from about 30 booths. Trick-or-treaters up to 12 years old also can participate in a costume parade and are invited to portray their characters as they walk across the Village stage beginning at 5:30 p.m., Eddy said.

The booths sometimes are as unique as the costumes the children wear. In previous years, a local bakery designed its booth to resemble a giant cupcake and a hair stylist’s booth resembled the hair style worn by the Whos in Dr. Seuss’ “How the Grinch Stole Christmas,” Eddy said.

Through its existence, the all-volunteer event grew from only government workers to include civic groups and corporate entities. The date also moved from Halloween – which typically is on a weeknight – to the Saturday before Oct. 31 to allow greater participation. An increase from three hours to its current five-hour time frame helped ease some of the traffic to the event, Eddy said.

The event brought 8,000 to Paulding Meadows in 2012 and has attracted as many as 10,000, she said. Through traffic will be asked to detour around the area because of the expected large amount of traffic, she said.

There is no budget for the event, so participating groups provide games and a hay ride at their own expense, she said. About 500 volunteers work to create and operate the Village, Eddy said.

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