WORD ON THE STREET: Street of Treats event draws record crowd

I know you’ve heard me say before that I love my job as director of the Sumner Downtown Association. But truly, when you have a job like mine, there are lots of times during the year when you feel like your face isn’t big enough to hold the huge smiles some of our Main Street events bring out.

This year’s Halloween Street of Treats event was a whopper of a smile maker – hands down our biggest crowd ever of costumed visitors, and that includes lots of four-legged characters. More than 3,500 people made the trek to downtown Sumner to trick and treat with merchants and watch the encore scarecrow performances of “Thriller” by Ascension Productions.

Not to mention getting those ever popular glow-in-the dark bracelets our police department hands out every year. Lots of Supermen, princesses and Winnie the Poohs have enjoyed the florescent treats Officer Backus has made a tradition of handing out annually, but I’ll bet not everyone knows he loves doing it because Halloween is his birthday. I could tell you exactly how old he is because we went to school together, but I think I’ll just suggest that if you see him in the next couple of weeks, be sure to wish him a happy birthday.

It is great to see so many friends and families gather downtown to celebrate an evening out together. I was amazed at the number of parents who dressed up with their kids. I cracked up when I saw Beth Brooks, one of our Come Walk With Me committee members from the Good Samaritan Foundation. Beth dressed her two daughters like the cutest little chickens and she and her husband donned overalls and plaid shirts and cowboy hats (they even brought their dog) to make it a true family night out. The little “chicks” were licking away at the tasty lollipops they got from George Shoemaker at the Riverside Ford stop on Main Street. And there was a pretty long line for the Sunset Chevrolet crew who brought two Camaros to Main Street, a new one and a sweet blue ’68 model I’ve seen on the lot. They set up a booth and tricked it out with cornstalks and pumpkins for their costumed sales staff to hand out candy.

Brian Kaplan from Coffee News handed out treats in the alley next to Lola and Nolan at Berryland who are always brimming over with Halloween fun for kids. And the Sumner Food Bank was back on Main Street chatting with various cartoon characters and handing out candy to some dice, a firefighter and a few pirates I saw walking down the street.

I know I sound like the Beach Boys when I say it was fun, fun, fun on Main Street on Halloween, but there really isn’t another word big enough to describe what I saw downtown that evening. Sumner truly is a great community to work in, to trick or treat in, to operate a business in and a great place to spend some time. Next up? Hometown Holidays Nov. 14 with the Norman Rockwell “Living Art” in storefront windows. See you then.

Oops, I almost forgot, happy birthday, Gary.