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Campground Celebrates Halloween in Spooky Style

November 2, 2009 by   - () Leave a Comment

Editor’s Note: Many RV parks and campgrounds, both private and public, across the U.S. celebrated Halloween in recent days. Here is an account from the Louisville (Ky.) Courier Journal reported on one campground’s observance of this festive holiday.

Walking past dangling skeletons and yellow caution tape Saturday (Oct. 31), Wolfgang Lawson put the finishing touches on the haunted woods he was creating with his daughter Jacque Albers.

“We love scaring people,” Albers said. “We love Halloween.”

The family from Mauckport, Ind., reserved three of the 280 campsites at the O’Bannon Woods State Park near Corydon, Ind.,  for the park’s annual Halloween Camping Weekend Friday and Saturday. The event offered crafts, a hike, hay rides, pumpkin carving, a decorating contest, story telling, trick or treating and more.

Friday’s rain drove most of the campers under shelter, so many spent Saturday afternoon decorating.

One of them was Lester Best, who strung bat-shaped lights from his camper’s awning as his wife Barbara Best contemplated the perfect placement for a skeleton.

This was the couple from Jeffersonville’s (Ind.) third time at the Halloween event.

“This is the most decorations we’ve had,” said Barbara Best. “The first year we just borrowed a string of lights from a friend.”

The highlight of the weekend was to be Saturday night’s trick or treating among the decorated campsites. Campers were to vote for their favorite spooky decorations and winners would get awards.

“It’s very safe trick or treating compared to some of the neighborhoods you might take your kids to,” said Jarrett Manek, the park’s full-time naturalist.

Cars are prohibited in the campgrounds during the hour and a half trick-or-treating time.

Chris and Andrea Hall of Lanesville, Ind., brought their children, Kaidyn, 6, and Nolyn, 2. “We’ve got a big group here,” said Andrea Hall. “Last year was our first. We’re going to make it an annual event.”

The event is now in its fourth year, and this time the park decided to partner with the Central Clovers 4-H Club.

“It’s turned out wonderful,” Manek said. “They are doing the door prizes and activities. We are doing the hay rides, bon fire and things like that.”

A scavenger hunt led visitors throughout the park. “It’s a great way to introduce people to the park and what we have here,” Manek said.

In the months leading to the event, the 4-H club solicited donations that allowed them to provide pet rocks, nature journals, soap carving, wood necklaces and a design-your-own-bug activity.

Bandon Carter, 10, came from Brandenburg, Ky., with his family for the weekend. “It’s a lot of fun,” he said. “I love Halloween.”

There were also educational programs on topics such as bees, trees and snakes.

A chili cook-off preceded the trick or treating and the evening was to end with spooky stories and legends around a bonfire.

“This is our first year doing this,” said Susan Salings, the 4-H Club leader. “It’s worked out really well and we’ve already scheduled next year’s event.”

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