(Photos by Robert Herrington)
Parents are encouraged to bring their children out to a safe environment for trick-or-treating, carnival games, treats, hayrides and more at the annual 4-H Junior Leader Community Halloween Party. The free party will be held from 6 to 8 p.m. Tuesday, Oct. 9 in the Exhibition Center of the Hamilton County 4-H Grounds, 2003 Pleasant St., Noblesville.
“It (the move to the Exhibition Center) has allowed for the people to be able to flow thru the event without being so crowded,” said 4-H Ag/Youth Program Assistant Lisa Hanni. “We have been able to add more carnival games with the extra space which has cut down on the length of lines that the kids have to stand in to participate in each activity.”
Youth ages 10 and under are invited to come in costume and enjoy games, prizes, candy and refreshments, a haunted barn and a hayride. Hayrides start at 6 p.m. and a costume contest will begin at 7:30 p.m. Hanni said there are three age groups (0-3, 4-6 and 7-10) with awards for prettiest, scariest, cutest and most original.
“We usually have about 300-350 youth that participate each year and are planning on an even larger group this year. We offer this as a free event for families which includes hayrides, carnival games, refreshments and a haunted house,” said Hanni. “Everyone is allowed to participate in the activities as many times as they wish.”
The evening is organized and sponsored by the Hamilton County 4-H Junior Leaders, who also hold an annual community Easter egg hunt in the spring. Hanni said funds to host the free events were raised from the Jr. Leaders poinsettia sale and soda stand during the summer’s 4-H Fair.
“This event is a way for the Jr. Leaders to give back to the community. They take some of their proceeds from their concession stand sales during the 4-H Fair to support this event,” she said.
Jr. Leaders will run the carnival games and plan, construct and man the haunted barn.
“I have been here assisting the Jr. Leader for over 20 years and I have been amazed at the leadership skills of the Jr. Leaders. This is a large event for them to organize, plan and implement. The event chairmen love the challenge of putting their own “twist” on it each year,” said Hanni. “It takes great leadership skills to not only plan the event but to organize all the Jr. Leaders to set it up and run the games and haunted house. As the advisor, it is very rewarding to me to see them gain confidence in themselves and grow in their leadership over the years to be able to accomplish such a successful community event.”
For more information, call 776-0854 or visit www.ag.purdue.edu/counties/hamilton.