OGDEN -- The Marshall White Center held its annual Halloween Harvest Festival on Saturday, activities including face painting, pumpkin carving, mask making, a coloring contest, and a creepy Haunted Alley in the basement.
Students from Ogden High's Family, Career, and Community Leaders of America club volunteered at the event; helping to set everything up on Friday and then returning on Saturday to induce scares in the Haunted Alley and help children make masks and carve pumpkins at the craft tables.
"I think it's great to get the community together. I know some children wouldn't be able to have a pumpkin, so it's nice to be able to have pumpkins for all the children and just give them a nice, fun, safe event to come to and celebrate the holiday," said Shaylene Parry, a teacher at Ogden High involved with the club. "My own children came and they're having a great time. Our high school students are having a really great time, too."
Adinia Chavez, a front-desk greeter at the center, was dressed as a pirate as she helped children carve pumpkins. Chavez agreed with Parry's sentiments.
"Kids whose parents don't have money to buy pumpkins or take them to the other events, they can come here and it's free," Chavez said. "That's what I like."
The center also held a Monster Splash event Saturday evening.
"We darken the whole pool area out. We have strobe lights; we have underwater lights that flash. The pumpkins that are left over we put around (the pool) and we put lights in them so it's kind of spooky. We have funky music going on and we have body parts floating in the pool, just all kinds of stuff," said Angela Rowe, events coordinator at the Marshall White Center.
Rowe said the arts and crafts in the main gym are intended for younger children, and the Haunted Alley and Monster Splash are intended for older children, and she appreciates that the Marshall White Center can offer events across different age groups free of charge.
"Times are hard," said Rowe. "It's good for (people) to get out and have a good time on a Saturday afternoon. They come in and enjoy themselves and get some candy. They get a pumpkin. They get their little crafts they get to take home. It's fun. It brings everybody out from the community and it gives the kids something to do instead of going to haunted houses. It helps the inner-city kids come and then they volunteer for next year's event."
Rowe said she plans to make next year's event even bigger and better. If you or your company would like to help her in her task with donations of Halloween items or by volunteering, you can contact her at (801) 629-8347 or firstname.lastname@example.org.