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Monday, October 17, 2011

Bad Halloween memories by Stacy

I love Halloween, which is sort of odd because growing up I experienced several traumatizing Halloweens.  Back in the 70s, we didn’t have baskets to collect candy.  We used paper grocery sacks---those were the olden days when bags still came with handles.  The year I was three, my bag dragged during the entire tour of the neighborhood.  As you can guess, at some point on the trip, I looked into my bag and found nothing there.  It was fairly traumatic and I can still remember every facet of that Halloween in all its horrid, vivid detail. 

Then there was the time my mother made us eat dinner before trick or treating.  We weren’t allowed to leave until the plate was clean.  The problem was that dinner was “Chinese food.”  Chop suey.  From a can.  No offense to La Choy, the fine producers of this cuisine, but I feel certain that Chinese food was never meant to be canned.  Needless to say, there was no Halloween for me that night.

My last bad memory was a result of my misunderstanding of the punk influence on early 80s pop music.  I was dressing with my friends as a member of the all girl band, “The Go-Go’s.”  I had the requisite mini skirt and tied headband, but how I felt a safety pin through the earlobe fit in, I just don’t know.  Apparently, just because your ears are pierced doesn’t mean that a safety pin will safely fit through your ear without creating a bloody, gory mess.

In Stillwater, it is easy to create wonderful Halloween memories when you have awesome events like the Downtown Halloween Festival on Tuesday, Oct. 25 from 5 p.m. to 9 p.m.  The festival will include bouncers, carnival games, fair food, a costume contest and trick-or-treating with downtown merchants.  All you need is a costume, and the library can help with that.

If you are short on time, consider:

·       Child’ Play: Quick and Easy Costumes” by Leslie Hamilton which has quirky ideas like dressing as a dinner table or a tube of toothpaste and super easy ideas like the “Backwards Dressed Boy or Girl” (literally the kid just dresses backward!)

·       Easy Costumes You Don’t Have to Sew” by Goldie Chernoff which is notable for standouts like a monster lobster, a totem pole and a super easy ladybug.

·       The Most Excellent Book of Face Painting” which really is most excellent because it shows how to apply makeup masks step by step.

If you have more time to prepare, browse our costume sections for inspiration.  We have all sorts of books on folk costumes from around the world or the popular fashions from each decade.  If you plan to stick to the festival’s theme of “Our Haunted Circus,” then look for:

·             Be a Clown” by Mark Stolzenberg

·             The Most Excellent Book of How to Be a Clown” by Catherine Perkins

·             Balloonology: 32 Projects to Take You From Beginner to Expert” by Jeremy Telford

Whichever costume you choose, you are bound to make wonderful memories this Halloween at Downtown Stillwater.

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