Editor's Note: Happy Halloween

Happy Halloween.

Halloween is one of my favorite holidays. I love having an excuse to dress up in outlandish costumes. I love carving jack o’lanterns. I love ghost stories and old monster movies on TV and, of course, candy.

A couple of us here at The MidWeek were pretty excited when we realized Halloween fell on a Wednesday, MidWeek day, this year. So we went out of our way to include a few treats for you.

For starters, nothing says “Halloween” like pumpkins, and last week was the 51st annual Sycamore Pumpkin Festival. Here's our photo gallery from that fun event – or rather, five days of fun events.

In On the Record, you can read Curtis Clegg’s interview with local ghost hunter Mark Schwabe. Schwabe, a bona fide paranormal investigator, appeared briefly on last week’s episode of “Ghost Hunters.”

And while we’re on the subject of ghosts, Doug Oleson tells an appropriately spooky story in Sidelines. Is it true, or just a story? You’ll have to read it and decide for yourself.

Finally, we did get out of Sycamore for some other spooky fun activities last week. You’ll find a story here about a fun puppet show with a trick-or-treat theme at the Hinckley Public Library.

On a serious note, if you have little ones you are taking trick-or-treating this evening, please be safe and make sure children understand safety rules. Halloween is one of the most dangerous days of the year for pedestrian accidents. It’s easy for children going house to house to gather candy to get excited and do things without thinking, like dart into the street or kick over a lit jack o’lantern along a front walk. Make sure kids pay attention when they cross the street and that they can safely move in their costumes: nothing they can trip over or that will obstruct their vision.

Costumes are one of the best parts of Halloween. And while store-bought costumes are OK, my favorites are always the ones people create themselves, especially if they’re a little offbeat. Last year I saw a little girl trick-or-treating as a bunch of grapes – she was wearing a purple sweatsuit with purple balloons pinned all over it. It was adorable.

My best costumes, I think, have always been homemade. My mom didn’t sew when I was a kid, but she was still a master at making costumes. One year, she turned a black trash bag into a raisin costume (this was in the mid-80s, when the California Raisins were at the peak of their popularity). Another year, I went as a rock star, and she made me a microphone with a cardboard tube, an old champagne cork and a lot of tin foil. My brother once carried the vacuum canister on his back when he dressed as a Ghostbuster.

Whether Halloween factors into your plans or not, have a good week, and enjoy your MidWeek.

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