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Children get into the Halloween spirit

Posted: October 23, 2009 10:01 p.m.
Updated: October 24, 2009 4:55 a.m.
 
Children dressed as princesses, ghouls and action heroes covered pumpkins with glitter paint, stickers and confetti as they prepared for a decorating contest at Newhall Community Center Friday evening.

Eleven-year-old Jonathan Vega of Canyon Country made cotton and round wooden pieces the main fixtures on his pumpkin in hopes of winning toy prizes.

“It’s really fun,”  said Vega, dressed in a long black robe as a winged Grim Reaper. “I’m going to take it home and put it out.”

Vega was one of hundreds of children crowding the center’s gymnasium to enjoy free food, a pumpkin-decorating contest, a magic show and a costume parade and contest.

Parents also appreciated the night’s festivities, which were sponsored by the Santa Clarita Sunrise Rotary Club.

“I like it because it’s different and my sons are happy,” said Vega’s mother, Fatima Vazquez.

Another parent said the event gave children a safe alternative to neighborhood activities.

“It’s good to get them interested in activities and not just (being) on the streets,” said Newhall resident Estela Valles, who brought her 8-year-old daughter and 4-year-old grandson to the event.

The night marked the club’s ninth annual Halloween bash and its third at the Newhall location, said Julie Calderon, the center’s community services coordinator.

As many as 600 children were expected to attend by the end of the night, she added.

Rotary club member Molly Hodson said the organization used craft supplies donated from The Salvation Army on Main Street for the pumpkin-decorating contest, while the club paid for other activities.

“It’s just something to do for the kids in the community,” Hodson said. “It was kind of a chance to give back locally.”

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