For several years now, I have been wishing for an alternative to trick or treating on Halloween. Most of the houses in our area don't participate, so it ends up being more walking and freezing than actually candy acquiring. So I found a local mall that was doing an inside event this year.
I was amazed at how crowded it was. The employees at the mall that I talked to were surprised too. The event was supposed to run from 4-6. We got there right around 4:00. The line for the jump inflatables was already down the mall, so we started out with trick or treating.
The majority of stores had an employee right at the door handing out candy, but a few were sticklers for trying to get people to actually come into their stores, probably in the hopes of buying something. I also thought this sign was funny because we noticed last year that the trick or treaters generally don't even say "trick or treat" anymore. They just stand there with their bags open. I made every kid say it before I gave them candy this year. It's the principal of the matter :)
After we had been around two of the four wings, the kids were starting to get restless because of some of the lineups. So we skipped the biggest lines to keep them moving, which they were thankful for.
Before we were even halfway around, another type of sign started appearing. Apparently, everybody in the mall had not anticipated the crowds that would turn out for the event. The boys weren't disappointed though, because they just wanted to get to the play area anyway.
Noah was less enthusiastic about the whole event until we got to the table that was giving away old beanie babies instead of candy. His new "buddy" has slept on his pillow every night since and has even made a trip to school.
Aaron's favorite, as always, was hugging the walking characters that were there. I wonder how old he will be when he grows out of it. It's still cute for now.
Unfortunately, the play area and the inflatables were still WAY too crowded, so we headed over to the brand new Barnes and Noble in the mall to browse instead. The kids loved that it was a bookstore "with two floors" so they were content to sit and read for quite awhile before we headed out for dinner.
After dinner, trick or treating was still in full swing and the kids were happy to just give out candy to those coming to our house before turning in for bed.
Even though it was crowded, Steve and I both agreed that we liked this better than what we've done in the past and I hope the event continues for years to come.