Goblins were fewer but just as fetching


November 06, 2001|By Nancy Gallant | Nancy Gallant,SPECIAL TO THE SUN

WEDNESDAY WAS the perfect night for trick-or-treating. The moon was full and bright. The sky was clear, dark and scattered with stars. The air was warm enough for little princesses and pirates to shuffle through the leaves in their costumes, unencumbered by heavy winter jackets.

But most of my Halloween candy still sits in a bowl by the front door. Usually, we welcome 60 or 70 trick-or-treaters. This year, we saw fewer than 30. Standing on the sidewalk with some neighbors that evening, I thought the silence was almost eerie. The squealing groups of children that cover the neighborhood most years until 9 p.m. were nowhere to be seen. Instead, we were visited by local children, all accompanied by their parents and all of them known to us personally. This was not a year for reaching out to strangers on Halloween. And fear was more than a costumed game.

Still, when I reach into the bowl for "just one little peanut butter cup," I remember the good things that happened on Halloween night. There was 4-year-old Stephanie Salinger, angelic in her pink finery, and her twin brother, Carl, bursting with pride as a big, strong Batman.

Two-year-old Timmy Pyne took forever walking down the sidewalk. He's not used to being outdoors at night and kept pointing in wonder to each new star he saw in the sky. Then, when Timmy finally reached our door, he was more interested in giving us candy from his bag than in getting candy from our bowl.

Jake Kramer tried to look like a menacing pirate. But he's 3 years old, so this little Blackbeard kept grinning and giggling.

Maybe it was a quiet Halloween. But it was still a very good one.

Chastity Day 2001

Local youths in seventh grade and above are invited to take part in Chastity Day 2001 from 7 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. tomorrow at Sacred Heart Catholic Church in Bowie.

Jason Everet, casually known as the "Surfer Guy" from San Diego, will talk about the issues young people face concerning chastity and sexuality. A nationally known radio and television personality, Everet has spoken to thousands of people around the country about this topic. Teen-agers, religious education classes and parents are encouraged to attend.

Admission is free. Information: 301-262-1221.

Kiwanis auction

Crofton Kiwanis Club will kick off the holiday season with its annual charity auction from 6 p.m. to 9 p.m. Saturday at the Knights of Columbus hall on Route 3 in Bowie. Items to be auctioned include a vacation in Ocean City, a driver's education course, gourmet restaurant certificates and tax-preparation services.

The auction is conducted in a party atmosphere, promising fun as well as a chance to contribute to charity. Proceeds will benefit American Red Cross blood drives; relief for victims of the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks; sponsorship of high school and middle school youth service clubs; recognition programs for local teachers, police officers and community leaders; and Johns Hopkins Miracle Network.

To receive an e-mail list of auction items: tafallon1@hotmail. com. Tickets will be $5 at the door. Information: Cole Drew, 410-721- 2225.

Tea at Epiphany

Epiphany Episcopal Church in Odenton is presenting its annual fall English Country Tea from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Saturday at the church on Odenton Road, off Route 175 near the MARC station.

The event offers a traditional English tea in the church's historic chapel. In addition to a variety of teas, scones, an assortment of tea sandwiches and homemade trifle will be served.

The cost is $12 in advance or $15 at the door. Information and tickets: Elva Cox, 410-674-4144.

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