POTSDAM – The Potsdam Chamber of Commerce has conjured up several new additions to this year’s Fright Night Thursday, Oct. 28 to ensure the whole family has its share of tricks and treats.
Chamber Executive Director Marylee Ballou says along with annual favorites such as the Haunted Hallway at Great Northern Printing and Treasure Hunt at Evan’s and White ACE Hardware, the community can participate in a new Halloween costume contest and hear haunting stories about Potsdam’s downtown businesses.
“We think it’s going to be a much more festive, family-oriented event,” Ballou said.
For the second year, block 1-35 of Market Street will be closed to traffic between 5:30 and 8 p.m. for children’s safety—and to provide businesses with outdoor space to set up their Halloween activities.
“Because we have permission to block off the street, that lets us invite businesses who don’t have a presence on the block to participate,” Ballou said, noting that Walmart, SeaComm and the Kiwanis Club are just a few of the dozens of groups and merchants joining the festivities downtown.
Sure to become a new favorite is the first-ever Halloween costume contest sponsored by St. Lawrence Chocolates and Rose & Kiernan Insurance Agency, beginning with registration at 5:30 p.m. in front of the chamber office at 24 Market St.
Skinny the talking skeleton will be MC as a panel of judges award prizes in five divisions from infant to adult based on originality, creativity and character attitude. All children will receive a treat bag.
In the event of rain, the winners will be randomly drawn from the names received from those who pre-register. To participate, call the chamber office at 274-9000 or register at the office that evening at 5:30 p.m.
For the older crowd seeking some spine-tingling entertainment, a new ghost walk of downtown Potsdam will be hosted by guide and storyteller Mary LaJoy. The walk starts in front of the chamber office, with two starting times of 6:30 and 8 p.m. Each walk lasts no longer than an hour. The tour is not recommended for younger children.
Students from the colleges will also be involved this year, setting up activities on the closed block, Ballou said. The Clarkson Honors Program will teach children how to make their own paper bag luminaries and the SUNY Potsdam Circle K will hold a bean bag toss for prizes.
While families make their way from business to business, they’ll be treated to outdoor Halloween music provided by DJ Double Dutch (Jody Tosti) from 6:30 to 8 p.m. and sponsored by the chamber.
A full list of activities and participating businesses or groups, on the closed Market St. block and elsewhere in the village, follows:
SeaComm, blocked street, goody bags, and meet-and-greet with Moola Moola; Walmart, blocked street, ring toss with candy, coffee, soda giveaway; Jernabi Coffee, 11 Maple St., dig for candy in coffee beans; Wear on Earth, 19 Market St., balloon animals; Little Italy, 30 Market St., guess the number of candy corn to win a gift certificate, free treats; The World Artisan, ½ Maple St., face painting; The Alchemistress, 17 Maple St., temporary tattoos; Sleepy Hollow Studios, 8 Market, temporary tattoos; Evans & White, 1 Maple St., treasure hunt; The Copy Shop, 11 Maple St., color your own t-shirt; Walgreens, 173 Market St., 4-7 p.m. free 4x6 print for each child, free drinks donated by Meadowbrook Farms, free cookies, value pack photo special; Argents, 32 Market St., spooky treats;
Also, The Bagelry, 9 Market St., decorate a spooky cookie; Big M, 27 Elm St., treat bags; First Crush, 32 Market St., candy, $1 Starbucks spiced cider or hot chocolate; Great Northern Printing, 6 Main St., Voodoo Doll Factory (haunted hallway), free t-shirts for kids; Northern Music & Video, 29 Market St., outdoor movie and store-wide sales; Misty Hollow, 22 Market St., face painting; Strawberry Fields Music, 8 Market St., spooky treats; Potsdam Public Library and University Bookstore, 39 Market St., scary stories read at 5:45, 6:15 and 6:45 p.m.;
Also, Julian’s Restaurant, 38 Market St., carved pumpkin contest; Northern Interiors, 46 Market St., treats; Kiwanis Club of Potsdam, block street, selling glow-in-the-dark sticks to help fund high school scholarships; St. Lawrence County Arts Council, 51 Market St., hot cider, coupon for 5 percent off kids’ art classes, 5 percent off gift shop purchases containing orange or black; Jazzercise, 22 Depot St., free classes at 4:15 and 6:15 p.m., free body mass index and body fat assessment at 5:20 and 6:10 p.m.; Pinto, Mucenski, Hooper, Van House, 42 Market St., treats.