City of Leduc, AB – It is a known fact that the City of Leduc knows how to party! Not one to leave kids out of any good party planning, this City knows how to invest time, energy and brain power in parties for kids. So, on the late afternoon of Saturday October 27, the City hosted a HOWLER, in the Co-op Field House of the Leduc Rec Centre.
With the ever-popular bouncy inflatable contraptions in place, the event staff closely monitored the endless stream of kids entering them. Locating kids at the other end was the duty of parents, some finding it challenging to ‘extricate’ their kids from that long, fun walk in a green plastic enclosure. Torin Ingram, an active four year-old had to be ‘cornered’ by two attendants within it, to be returned (pouting) to his anxious dad… (lol)
The HOWLER’s coordinator was Leslie Arason, an articulate and dynamic Leisure Services Assistant who was thrilled by the success of this event, the first of two Halloween events organised by the City. At the end of the day, front desk greeters reported 554 ‘paid’ children (2 and older), and Leslie estimates that just under 2,000 people attended. (!!). Several LRC customer service attendants greeted guests, including long-time team member Florence Johnson in her colorful witch outfit.
Miss Arason was assisted by a small group of cheerful and definitely kid-oriented youths who did a great job of keeping the event “under control” and assisting the kids with the various activities: these youths are local, part-time event assistants that are as young as 16! An entertaining magician, Brian Lehr and a talented ventriloquist, Val Hillicker delighted kids and adults alike. One mother shared that she was fascinated by the ventriloquist, as she was staring at the performers’ mouth, wondering if you could see it moving….
The highlight of the party for some was the presence of TAMARIJN EXOTICS, a Leduc-based group that owns and showcases a vast collection of snakes, lizards, frogs and toads, tarantulas, scorpions and spiders (brrrr…). Michelle Karpan is a contributor to the exhibits with her own lizards, snakes and turtles. For the past several years now, Tamarijn has introduced its critters to school groups, trade-show visitors, community parades and regional events.
Some spectators can be fearful, but Tamarijn owner Doug Klooster and his brother and show assistant Brandon Klooster confirm that the majority of adults and kids are in fact quite fascinated by their close proximity to these creatures, as proven by the big line-up at their 40-foot long exhibit, at the Howler event! The star of the show was a huge boa constrictor, a 10-year-old creature, over 8 feet in length and weighing approximately 25 lbs that was held by its owner and sometimes, by an eager and willing guest…
With arcade games, a crafts table and goodies being offered near the exit by more cheerful attendants, this HOWLER spells another success for the City of Leduc leisure teams, and it was a great way for them to spread this message: “Have a safe and fun Halloween, everyone!”