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Halloween Haunts: Front Yard Celebrations

Sun Advocate publisher

A quick drive through the neighborhoods in Price and Helper gives a person the sense that Halloween is right around the corner. Home after home is creatively and uniquely decorated with scary and unfamiliar faces.

The front yards carry the well known themes of goblins and ghosts, as well as a variety of vampires and scarecrows, but this year the selection expanded into the trees and bushes with spider webs connecting yards together.

Witches are flying into windows, doors and light poles and dozens of homes have creative cemeteries with headstones, and a number of hands and feet uniquely placed for the viewer's entertainment.

Front yards used to carry only a few creatively carved pumpkins but each year more and more people build scenes and expand their yard art to carry the scary message of Halloween.

Halloween is a favorite holiday of children, but they're thinking about costumes and candy and fun with their friends. Safety is the last thing on their minds, so parents and motorists need to be especially alert.

Here are some good ideas for safety.

•Halloween has become an adult holiday, too, and alcohol consumption is high on that day. Institute a free cab ride home program and other anti-impaired driving efforts.

•Coordinate a "Hands Off Halloween" campaign. Ask alcohol vendors not to use children's Halloween symbols when promoting alcohol to adults.

•Involve PTAs, SADD chapters, drug and alcohol-free clubs, peer-to-peer mentoring groups and others.

•Check out NOYS (National Organizations for Youth Safety) at for party planning tips.

•Since daylight savings time ends Oct. 27, it is a good time for pedestrian safety reminders.

Ghosts and Goblins may rule on Oct. 31, but make sure your little monster is safe! Here are some hints on safety for kids.

•No masks or hoods that obscure vision.

•No "costume" shoes that make walking difficult.

•Make sure costumes do not impede walking, (or driving) ability.

•Add reflective tape to back, chest, arms and legs.

•Parents should accompany their children and supervise trick-or-treat activities.

•Review all traffic rules with children before set out for their trick or treating.

•Remind children to "Stop! Look left-right-left again and listen," before crossing the street.

•Obey all traffic rules.

•Walk-never run-from house to house or across the road.

•Whenever possible, cross streets at intersections or in crosswalks.

•Carry a flashlight.

As for adults, they have some grave responsibilities on Halloween too.

•Motorists should slow down! Watch for children walking on roads, medians and curbs.

•Enter and exit driveways carefully.

•Be especially alert for children darting out from between parked vehicles and from behind bushes and shrubs.

•Never drink and drive tonight or any night. If you are partying, designate a driver.

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