Trick-or-treaters fill Third Street
“MMMMMMmmmmm” roared the Abominable Snowman, alias Gavin Rosenberry, showing how he would convince Third Street businesses to give him candy Wednesday afternoon.
Gavin, 8, was one of hundreds of children who successfully trick-or-treated during the McMinnville Downtown Association’s popular Halloween event. They came dressed as zombies, witches, ninjas, fairies, unicorns, dragons, pirates, pilots, princesses, astronauts, cowboys, Egyptians, characters from movies and video games, zoo animals and friends of Winnie the Pooh.
The Abominable Snowman had been planning for the event for ages — almost since last Halloween. Gavin said the idea “came into my head,” and his grandma, Janet Sexton, made his costume from white fake fur.
While Gavin was a Halloween veteran, many of the other trick-or-treaters were novices.
Brothers Dylan, 15 months, and Logan, 5 months, were among those making their Halloween debut. Their parents, Stephanie Yates and Michael LaPlante had dressed them in University of Oregon caps in addition to an Elmo costume for Dylan and a monkey costume for Logan.
Helena Lemperle, 10 months, wore a ladybug outfit for her first Halloween experience. The downtown trick-or-treating event also was a new experience for her mother, Sylvia Lemperle, who recently moved to McMinnville from Spain. Spanish children celebrate Halloween, she said, “but it’s small; nothing like this.”
Elena Kluckow, 2 years, 3 months, was trick-or-treating for the second time. Dressed in a blue fairy princess outfit, she accepted a piece of candy from Katelyn Blanchard at Union Block Coffee, then raced over to her mother to show off her prize.
Kailin Forsman, also 2, dressed as Dorothy from “The Wizard of Oz,” complete with ruby slippers. She held a basket containing a Toto, Dorothy’s little dog.
Her mother also dressed up — in a yellow sweater. “I’m the Yellow Brick Road,” Tara Forsman said.
Ten-month-old twins Rayna, a little giraffe, and Raylee, a tiny tiger, were accompanied by three costumed adults: mom Stephany Swendig, in a red velvet devil costume; dad Scottie Krzyzaniak, attired like a pilot from a downed airplane; and uncle Anthony Golden, as Jason from “Friday the 13th.”
Krzyzaniak said the adults were probably having more fun than the youngsters this year. “Halloween is pretty much my Christmas,” he said.
“Mmmnffgrrrr” said the werewolf football-playing zombie, aka 8-year-old CJ Miller, explaining through his mask how he chose his alter ego for Halloween.
Translation: The Wascher School student found a severed leg prop while he and his mom were shopping at Goodwill. That inspired him to invent the zombie character, which he combined with the werewolf mask and a real football jersey.
CJ was trick-or-treating with his friend Milo Elliott, 7, who was dressed as the Spyro from Skylanders, a video game.
Spyro, who is purple with golden spikes and wings, looks like a cross between a dragon and the Creature from the Black Lagoon. He and the game series are very popular with elementary students.
“I really like Skylanders. It’s really fun,” said Milo, who attends Grandhaven School. “I picked Spyro, because he’s the leader, and I’m a leader.”
Cousins Rain Lilja and Mia Richie, both 5, were quite a contrast as they walked Third Street together.
Mia was dressed in a glowing white bridal gown and carrying a bouquet. She has her sights set on a boy in her kindergarten class.
Rain was dressed in torn black clothing, with red makeup smeared on her throat and a rubbery knife in her hand. “I’m Bloody Mary!” she cried, delighted with her costume choice even though it was too scary for her to wear to school.
Rain said she recently heard the story of the famous ghost. The Bloody Mary legend includes a warning. “If you say her name three times, you’ll be killed,” Rain said. “So don’t say her name three times.”
“Mmmmm? Mmmm?” muttered Shadow, a 2-year-old black Lab, curious about all the other canines wandering Third Street.
“She loves other dogs,” owner Laura Stuckey said.
This was 2-year-old Shadow’s first trick-or-treating event. She was rocking a gray squirrel costume.
Stuckey said the outfit was inspire by the movie “Up,” in which all the dogs instantly become alert when they see a squirrel. “I thought that would be funny,” Shadow’s owner said.
Up and down Third Street, human trick-or-treaters giggled and traded stories of their candy conquests. No one seemed to mind the occasional sprinkles or the sometimes slow-moving lines.
“This is awesome!” a young vampire called to his friends.
A cowgirl tugged her mother’s arm. “Can’t I eat some now? Just one sucker?” she pleaded. “I have lots.”
As happy as the children were during the downtown trick-or-treating event, some of the parents were even happier.
The 411 Eatery was handing out treats for adults as well as candy for kids. Costumed or not, parents eagerly accepted bites of candied bacon.
“mmmmmMMMMMM!” they said.