November 3, 2017
More than 300 witches, warlocks, zombies and ghouls descended on The Shed at Little Drayton Street in Nanango on Tuesday night.
The occasion was Nanango’s fourth annual Halloween family fun night, and organiser Jane Erkens said she was “overwhelmed” with the turnout.
“The first year we ran this we had about 25 to 30 kids, and the second year that grew to about 65. And when 200 kids and their parents turned up last year, we were just blown away. But this year has beaten all records!”
As is now traditional, Jane and a team of helpers had turned the building’s front yard into an eerie graveyard, complete with spooky spiderwebs and lurid fluorescent lighting, dancing skeletons and a custom-made coffin.
Strange characters wandered about to keep the children from getting too close, and smoke machines helped provide just the right atmosphere for a frighteningly good time.
Fortunately – thanks to sponsorships from Nanango’s Heritage Community Branch, Alisellou Designs, Cr Roz Frohloff, Anna’s Fairy Floss and Nanango Real Estate – any children spooked by the graveyard could quickly turn their minds to other, more positive things.
There were free iceblocks to be had, along with free bags of sweets and a free sausage sizzle for eager “trick-or-treaters”.
Jane said the idea for a Halloween party had come to her several years ago when she visited Canada to see her grandchildren.
“I first got interested in Halloween after going out trick or treating with my grandkids,” Jane said.
“They live in a small rural town and the streets were full of children all chatting and laughing, parents keeping a close watch but meeting and greeting friends and neighbours.”
Jane said she saw the effort the Canadian town’s residents put in to decorate their houses and how they enjoyed the children’s visits, especially older residents who loved chatting to the kids and parents.
“It was a really good way to get people to meet and mix, and a lot of fun for children too.
“Kids are only kids for such a short time, so why not let them get into fancy dress?
Jane paid special tribute to the friends and supporters of The Shed for helping to run the evening.
“They all put in a tremendous volunteer effort and I really couldn’t do this without them,” she said.
“I think these people should be acknowledged for the effort they put into this community event – Halloween is fun!”