Church holds Halloween event for kids
Hope Ridge United Methodist Church, 9870 Old Johnnycake Ridge Rd. in Mentor, was filled with hundreds of kids in costumes playing games and collecting candy Oct 29.
The annual Trunk-or-Treat allowed kids the opportunity to play games, get their faces painted, collect candy and pose for photos in front of an background with pumpkins, all while listening to live entertainment provided by the Hope Ridge Praise Team.
Pastor Beth Wilterdink estimates that this is approximately the eighth year for the event
which keeps growing from about 50 kids attending the first year of the event to over 400 now attending.
“It’s really been a great connecting point with the community,” Wilterdink said. “It’s been a good way to serve the community; and we have enjoyed making the connections. It’s also been a great way to bring together all the things we do in the church.”
In addition to the church, there is also community involvement from the Concord Township Fire Department and the Lake County Sheriff’s Office, who were present at the event with a fire truck, rescue squad and a SWAT vehicle.
“It’s a great way for us to show the equipment that the sheriffs office has, and that we are friendly and that the sheriffs office and law enforcement are here to help children” Mike Warner, captain in charge of communications division for the Lake County Sheriffs Office said.”
For Matt Sabo, chief of the Concord Township Fire Department, its a way to get involved in the community, a chance to teach the kids a little about fire safety and a chance to let them see the trucks.
“We don’t want an emergency to be the first time they see one. And the equipment belongs to the community, so it should be out in the community,” he said.
Amy Sak, of Mentor, whose children Hunter, Tyler and Ashton attend preschool at the church attended the event with her kids just for some family together time.
Lindsey Pease, of Painesville, brought her daughter Rylyn, 7.
“I love it; it’s super cute,” Pease said of the event.
Wilterdink described Trunk-or-Treat as an opportunity to welcome the community into the church and work with other partners in the community such as Project Hope, and the Painesville Free Clinic who were active in the event along with first responders and law enforcement.
“It’s a way to do some community education and outreach,” Wilterdink said. “For us it really is a way to build relationships with our neighbors.”
Scotty Blair Jr, 14 months, falls into a kiddie pool full of corn at the Hope Ridge United Methodist Church Trunkor-Treat event, Oct. 29.