Dressed up children are enough to warm even the coldest and unfestive hearts at Halloween. (Sarah Simpson/Citizen file)

Column: Halloween not my happiest time of the year

There. I said it. I am indeed a party pooper.

I hate to be a bit of a buzzkill, especially in my “happy news” column, but I don’t much care for Halloween.

There. I said it. I am indeed a party pooper.

I’m just not big on the thrill of being spooked, I think it’s easier to just go buy the candy I want instead of having to walk around asking strangers for it, and dressing up with the hope of drawing attention to myself is scarier for me than all the ghosts and goblins and whatnot.

It’s been that way most of my life, not just since becoming an adult. I was the boring little kid who would rather hand out candy at home than go out collecting it. Either way, I still got to eat candy.

But now that there are children in my life, I have loosened up a little and I do enjoy helping the young ones with their pumpkins and costumes and, in general, delighting in their excitement.

If you don’t have the pleasure of smaller children in your lives and you need a smile at this time of year, head to downtown Duncan on Saturday, Oct. 28 for the Halloween Spooktacular. You can hit the market and grab a coffee and then find a bench to sit on while you watch the little costume-clad kids trick-or-treat from shop to shop and play games in the square between 10 a.m. and 2 p.m.

The best part of the event, in my opinion, is the little kids that have just learned to walk, all dressed up and waddling around with their buckets, completely clueless as to the fact that this is not a normal occurrence. Those ones make even the Halloween-haters like me grin.

I’ve got one of those this year; she’ll be a monkey and she’ll be the cutest little monkey in town (no offence to any of you and/or your monkeys). It’s a shame most of you won’t see her in action. I will be pleased that my young brood will only make it to five or six houses before calling it a night, which is a bit of a bummer in terms of how much candy I’ll be able to get. I mean they’ll be able to get.

As much as I do appreciate an evening walk with my family, I’d prefer to take it pretty much any other night of the year.

What I do appreciate, though, is people like Daphne Swift and her Big Shop of Horrors — a private citizen who has converted her property at 7305 Bell McKinnon Rd. into a haunted house to raise funds for The Full Cupboard, which benefits our local food bank, Multiple Sclerosis Society, and the Big Brothers, Big Sisters of the Cowichan Valley.

And as much as I like those mini chocolate bars, what Swift is doing is the real treat at this time of year. Speaking of treats, Kinderbees Children’s Consignment will once again be doing its annual post-Halloween candy/book exchange. In the week or so following Hallowwen night, children ages 13 and under or those of any age with special needs, can bring their Halloween candy into the store and trade them for children’s or chapter books. The trade is five pieces of candy for one book, up to four books.

Now that’s really something I can sink my teeth into.

Sarah

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