Photo courtesy of Sheldon Livesay.
ROGERSVILLE — Someone once said that downtown Rogersville is haunted, and if that’s the case the local ghosts will have plenty of spooky company Thursday evening during the sixth annual “Trunk-Or-Treat” Halloween party.
Chamber of Commerce Director Nancy Barker, who co-organized the event, said Rogersville’s Trunk-Or-Treat attracts around 2,500 children every year.
“It’s providing a safe Halloween activity for the children of Hawkins County,” Barker said. “We’re expecting about 50 vehicles, and as they have in the past, they’ll be decorating their trunks and handing out candy. They’re also competing for a best decorated prize, and every year it’s a pretty tough competition.”
She added, “Of course the children love the candy, but it’s fun for everybody just to see how creative these businesses and organizations get with their decorations.”
Main Street between Brownlow and Hasson streets will be blocked Thursday beginning at 1 p.m. for the setup, and the actual Trunk-Or-Treat event takes place 5-8 p.m.
A new feature to this year’s event is the addition of the Hale Springs Inn to the spooky festivities. The Inn’s courtyard and gazebo area will host family- friendly Halloween movies and provide games and candy for the youngsters.
Event organizers have also found a better way for children to make use of toilet paper Halloween night, as opposed to hanging it in their neighbors’ trees.
The annual “mummy wrapping contest” begins at 6 p.m.
Teams of three will have eight minutes to wrap their victim with toilet paper, with a prize going to the most creatively wrapped mummy.
A costume contest will be held on the lawn in front of Colboch-Price Funeral Home, with registration beginning at 6 p.m. and judging at 7 p.m.
First-, second- and third-place prizes will be awarded in three age groups, including 3 and under, 4-7 and 8-13.
Costumes will be judged on creativity. Pre-made store-bought costumes won’t be eligible for a prize.
Another attraction this year is the fortune teller, who will be revealing everyone’s future on the Courthouse Square.
Refreshments such as popcorn, cotton candy and drinks will be for sale. Main Street businesses will also stay open during the event and are competing for a best-decorated storefront honors.
Due to the large number of children who attend, the flow is organized to begin on the east side of the event at the Brownlow Street intersection.
That’s where children will register and receive tote bag and a card with the trunk numbers on it. To help prevent Halloween tricksters from going through twice, each trunk will mark its number off on the card when a child receives their candy.
Barker noted that background checks are conducted on the organizations that sponsor trunks to ensure they are safe and legitimate.
“It’s just a lot of businesses, organizations, and some individuals,” Barker said. “We’ve got fire departments, the police department the sheriff’s office, churches — just an assortment of folks who want to help create a great event that offers children a safe Halloween experience.”