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Safety isn’t Scary

October 26, 2011

Displaying their Glow Stick necklace and Halloween faces are (front, from left): Gabe Kengersky, Angelo Pape, Libby Gianvito, Alyssa Campbell, Alexia Matts, Hailey Labryer; (back) Shawn Houck, PennDOT District 10 safety officer, Matt Kengersky of Nationwide Insurance-The Kengersky Agency; and Police Chief Tom Fedigan. (Photo by Larry McGuire)

PUNXSUTAWNEY — Safety is the key word for trick-or-treating, which will be held in Punxsutawney Monday, Oct. 31, beginning with the traditional firefighters’ parade at 6 p.m., and trick-or-treating to follow until 9 p.m.

All youngsters in the borough — including East End children, who will trick-or-treat Saturday — are welcome to participate.

The parade will form at 5:30 p.m. on Union Street near Napa Auto Parts. Once again, Nationwide Insurance-The Kengersky Agency has purchased and donated Glow Stick necklaces for the little ghosts and goblins to wear while trick-or-treating, said Nationwide agent Matt Kengersky.

The agency has been offering the program for at least 10 years, which averages about 3,000 to 5,000 necklaces given out to the kids at Halloween, he said.

Not only do the Glow Sticks put smiles on kids’ faces, but the drivers are aware of trick-or-treaters, the kids are more aware to look both ways when crossing the street, Kengersky said.

About 500 Glow Stick Necklaces will be handed out 30 minutes before the parade.

“They wrap them around their neck or wrists, and they glow,” Punxsutawney Borough Police Chief Tom Fedigan said. “We always encourage everyone to be visible on Halloween. This is an extra effort that we do to promote safety.”

Kengersky has also donated Glow Stick necklaces for the East End Halloween celebration, which will be held from 6 to 9 p.m. Saturday.

All local children are welcome to trick-or-treat both Saturday and Monday.

Shawn Houck, PennDOT District 10 press safety officer, said PennDOT is happy to again partner with The Kengersky Agency and the Punxsutawney Borough Police to promote safety at Halloween.

“These upcoming events are important to kids and their parents, and it’s a major holiday when it comes to people getting out and parading the streets and trick-or-treating going door-to-door,” Houck said.

It can be a very dangerous activity if people aren’t careful, and motorists should slow down and use caution with the Saturday night East End and Monday night borough events.

Police Chief Tom Fedigan’s officers, Punxsutawney Fire Department Fire Police and REACT will patrol the streets Monday.

REACT will patrol the streets Saturday along with borough police.

Houck said year after year, Fedigan does a great job of organizing these events to keep everyone safe.

“People shouldn’t take for granted that Halloween has been safe all of these years in Punxsutawney for no apparent reason,” he said. “A lot of hard work goes into planning these events to keep trick-or-treaters safe.”

Houck said impaired drivers — especially those under the legal drinking age — had better beware this Halloween, as PennDOT and area law enforcement are teaming up to increase patrols throughout the week.

“Many drivers under 21 don’t realize that different rules and penalties apply to them if they are caught drinking and driving,” said PennDOT Secretary Barry J. Schoch. “Putting people’s lives in danger by getting behind the wheel while impaired is senseless and can result in tragedy. It’s just not worth the cost.”

Houck said the legal blood-alcohol content in Pennsylvania is 0.08 for motorists over the age of 21.

For underage drivers, the BAC limit is 0.02 percent. Penalties for a conviction can include jail time, license suspension and fines of between $500 and $5,000.

Adults, even parents, who are convicted of knowingly and intentionally supplying minors with alcohol are subject to a fine of at least $1,000 for the first offense and $2,500 for each additional offense, and face up to a year in jail.

* * *

TRICK-OR-TREATING

PUNXSY
• The East End of Punxsutawney will be open to the public for trick-or-treat from 6 to 9 p.m. Saturday.

Trick-or-treat will begin at the East End bridge (near the former Mary A. Wilson Elementary) and continue to Robinson Street (just before Steffy Financial and Cindee’s Country Corner).

State Street will also be included.

The evening’s events will include Michele “Boo” Lorenzo’s annual Haunted House along East Main Street and the Weavers’ annual Light the Night on Rockland Avenue.

Youngsters in other parts of the borough are invited to take part in the East End.

• Trick-or-treat in the Borough of Punxsutawney will begin with the annual Halloween parade, hosted by the Punxsutawney Fire Department, at 6 p.m. Monday, Oct. 31, followed by trick-or-treating until 9 p.m.
The Halloween Parade forms at 5:30 p.m. near Napa Auto Parts on Union Street.

The parade begins at 6 p.m. from South Gilpin Street to Barclay Square.
East End youngsters may also take part in the parade and trick-or-treating Monday, Oct. 31.

BIG RUN, YOUNG TOWNSHIP
• Trick-or-treat will be held from 6 to 9 p.m. Monday, Oct. 31.
STUMP CREEEK

• Trick-or-treat will be held from 6:30 to 9 p.m. Monday, Oct. 31.

McCALMONT TOWNSHIP
• Trick-or-treating will be held from 6 to 8 p.m. Saturday, Oct. 29.
Any municipality not listed here should contact The Spirit at 938-8740 to report trick-or-treating times.

Youngsters should visit only houses with the porch lights on, and participating residents should remember to turn those lights on for trick-or-treaters.

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