Events galore Downtown for All Hallow’s Eve


By Ashley Winchester

There are more treats than tricks Downtown for costumed kids and adults this Halloween. In addition to traditional door-to-door candy grabbing, several parades, parties and picnics are scheduled throughout the neighborhood. Halloween festivities began last weekend with “The Great Pumpkin Party” at the World Financial Center, Hudson River Park’s “Pier of Fear” and children’s festival, the Christopher Park Halloween Party, and Halloween at Sea at the South Street Seaport. Similar spooks will take place Halloween evening, Oct. 31.

New this year is a Children’s Halloween Parade at Pier 40, sponsored by Friends of Hudson River Park. Beginning at 4 p.m., costumed children will line up at the Pier 40 Picnic House, near Houston St. for a parade led by a musical band along the scenic waterfront walkway. A reception with live music, refreshments and activities will be held at the Picnic House after the parade.

A similar parade at Washington Market Park at Greenwich and Chambers St. will include marching around the neighborhood with the Circus Amok band, followed by a party in the park. This year, two separate parades for toddlers and older children will alleviate congestion. Marchers will gather at the Citigroup building at Greenwich and N. Moore Sts. at 2 p.m. for children in strollers, and 3:00 for school-aged children.

“There will be a band, pony rides, a wall of straw with treats, and several costumed characters giving out treats for the kids,” event organizer Fraya Berg said. Children can visit a number of costumed characters and grab treats from cauldrons, pumpkins and a wall of straw. Event organizers will provide maps of the neighborhood for safe trick-or-treating after the party, she said.

The candy doesn’t stop there. In many cases, child-centered Halloween parties and weekend events will precede an evening of door to door treat soliciting. Battery Park City mother Marybeth Lawlor said her sons will attend a party and go trick or treating in the neighborhood.

“We will be going to the Hallmark for the party, and then going to go around the buildings in B.P.C. and trick or treat… We usually go door to door but it’s the first time we’re going to the party.”

The Hallmark Retirement Community has invited all trick-or-treaters to visit the building at 455 North End. Ave. for a party from 3-5 p.m. Candy and refreshments will be served, and trick-or-treat lists will be provided. Two year-old James Lawlor will be Peter Pan for the evening, while his brother, four year-old Liam, inspired by Disney’s recent D.V.D. release, will go as Simba from The Lion King.

B.P.C. parent leader Martha Gallo said her two children will go for cute this year, dressed alike as puppies, but inspiration for costumes can come from anywhere.

“As usual there’s going to be a lot of princesses and Spider-Men, Spongebobs, Bob the Builders and an array of things,” Gallo said.