Village of Riverwoods

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Our Village Comes Together for a Spooktacular Halloween Party

November/December 2012

By Sherry Kaplan


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The Village Halloween Party of 2012 was the best ever! Thanks in part to the hard work of our volunteers, Jan Bastian, Barbara Wallace, Betty Dlouhy, Jackie Borchew, and Susan Falk, who worked as a team to decorate Village Hall. Screaming spinning witches, booing ghosts, skeletons with fiery eyes, skulls, mice, spiders and bats were there to greet the children.

There were more party goers than last year. There were vampires dripping blood, darling princesses, iron men and super heroes who gobbled up 400 hot dogs and 30 extra-large pizzas, popcorn, bags of candy, cookies, and 20 gallons of apple cider! The bonfire was the biggest ever and it kept the children warm as they had fun roasting marshmallows and making s'mores under the watchful eyes of Marguerite Welter, Mike Ford, Betty Dlouhy, Chad Solomon and Dan Gelfond. Once again Bob Gand and his singers from the Village Music Store played banjo and led the singing on the horse-drawn hay rides. Trustee Rick Jamerson lent a hand to help people on and off the hay wagon.

Back at Village Hall, Jody Jingglejam's tunes filled the air as she played guitar and sang along with the dancing children. Al Solomon donated children's books and each child was able to choose two books to take home. It seemed as if the children and their parents enjoyed the books even more than the candy.

Right in the middle of the action were the police and fire department in full force! The police car and fire truck welcomed the children to climb aboard and sound the sirens.

Trustee John Norris, dressed as a recyclable aluminum can, and Roger Simonson, dressed as a computer, accompanied representatives from SWALCO to encourage residents to recycle.

Our sponsors make this party possible. Northside Community Bank was the major sponsor. In addition, thanks go out to Gewalt-Hamilton Associates, Inc. and its representative Pat Glenn who helped cook hot dogs; Urban Forest Management, Inc.; Ray Alyea Landscaping; Highland Solutions, Inc.; Glenwood Tree Experts; and H.T. Strenger, Inc.

It takes a village to make a party. People began calling to volunteer their services months ahead of time. In addition to those who helped to decorate, we also need to mention Marguerite Welter who not only presides over the s'mores each year, but also with her children assembles the bags of candy and buys all of the paper goods. Jan Bastian not only decorated but found many of the new decorations this year. After decorating, Barbara Wallace returned to the party to serve hot dogs. Marla Gelfond and Mary Dayno served the pizza, and Nikki Norris served the cider. Paula Haber oversaw the cookies while her husband, Trustee Mike Haber, assisted in the cooking of the hot dogs. Tammy Parasnos and her cousin Tasha once again manned the popcorn machine and delighted the children with fresh bags of popcorn to enjoy throughout the party. Ellen McKnight, the candy lady, handed out bags of candy to all of the children.

Finally, special thanks to Al and Chad Solomon and Rob Durning who played a huge role in setting up the entire party. Please forgive me if I have forgotten to mention your name. With so many people involved in this wonderful Village event, I may have left someone out. In any event, thank you to all who helped. The fact that we can put on a party of this magnitude every year is a testament to the wonderful people who call Riverwoods home. Thank you to everyone and see you at next year's Halloween celebration!

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