Rain, clouds don’t dampen Halloween spirit

By By BEN RAYMOND LODE / Niles Daily Star
NILES -- Cloudy skies and the chance of rain may have kept some people away from the second annual Halloween Costume Contest at Riverfront Park's amphitheater on Saturday.
But, despite the weather, event organizers said almost 100 children and adults competed in the Simplicity Pattern sponsored event.
When the judging began, the space around the amphitheater was crowded with competitors who wore a wide variety of costumes.
Baber, a Simplicity employee, however, said it looked like the people who did show up had a good time.
She is thankful for those who donated the gifts that were raffled away during the contest.
Among those who competed, and won first and second prize in the home sewn category, was Amy Archer's son and daughter, Zack and Emily.
Zack, who dressed up as Tin Man from the Wizard of Oz, said he also competed in last year's costume contest.
He thinks the costume contest is fun and looked forward to the subsequent downtown safe Trick or Treat, which was put on by the Downtown's Merchant Association.
Amy, who made the costumes for her children, said the family looked forward to this year's competition because "We had a good time last year."
Susan Fleck, also a Simplicity employee, was one of approximately 20 judges who picked out the winning costumes.
Fleck was also among those who judged the home sewn category.
In the home sewn category, Fleck said judges looked for originality, design and the construction of the garment when they made their decisions.
Following the costume contest, families gradually made their way to the downtown are to take part in the downtown Trick or Treat.
From Front Street all the way to Fourth Street, children, accompanied by adults, stopped in front of businesses with their candy bags and asked for treats.
Jason Alexander walked the downtown with his son, daughter and nephew.
He thinks it's good for the children to have a safe place to trick or treat.
Kenya Clark accompanied her daughter during the downtown trick or treat on Saturday.
Clark said she likes the downtown trick or treat because it makes her not worry about what her daughter may be given as a treat.
Chris Lynch, owner of the Stein &Vine on Second Street, seemed to have his hands full handing out candy to the many children who walked past his establishment on Saturday.
Although the children kept him busy, Lynch was glad to see so many people visiting downtown Niles.

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