East End invites everyone to a spooky time

PUNXSUTAWNEY — It should be a hauntingly good time in Punxsy’s East End during its annual Halloween trick-or-treat night Saturday, with many scary surprises for little and big ghosts and goblins.

If trick-or-treaters are looking for a frightening — yet fun — experience, they should check out the display at the home of Michele “Boo” Lorenzo and Jan Zamperini, 709 East Mahoning St., from 6 to 9 p.m. Saturday during East End’s trick-or-treat night.

Lorenzo said this is the ninth year for her Halloween spectacular, and all for the same reason: For the kids.

And if you thought Lorenzo went all out decorating and turning her home into a haunted house in previous years, this year’s display is bigger and better than ever.

“There’s nothing much here for the kids to do that is safe, that’s why with our celebration, you can trust the people participating, which is why we want to go all out for Halloween,” she said.

She wants today’s youngsters to have fond memories of trick-or-treating in Punxsy.

“When we were kids, Halloween was always fun, and we just want to leave some kind of memories for the kids to reflect on,” Lorenzo said.

Students aboard school buses yell toward the haunted house and give it a thumbs up, Zamperini said.

“Whenever we’re in a store, kids come up to us and ask us what we’re going to do this year,” Lorenzo said. “I tell them that they’ll have to wait, because it’s a surprise.”

When the trick-or-treaters arrive at the house Saturday, they’ll proceed through a corn tunnel full of various surprises leading to the back yard. That’s where Lorenzo, Zamperini and 25 other helpers will hand out 800 treat bags.

But that’s not all that’s going on Saturday in the East End.

East End resident Heather Weaver said once again, the First Assembly of God will sponsor “Light the Night,” at 201 Rockland Ave., featuring a non-scary event for trick-or-treaters with puppets and games.

“This is our eighth year for Light the Night, and once again, we’ll offer free refreshments for everyone who stops by Saturday night,” Weaver said.

Another East Ender, Doug Beichner, said Light the Night is like a party with a Biblical slant, while Weaver added that the event isn’t scary, but just fun for the kids.

“The reason it is called Light the Night is because we do try to share the gospel with the kids when they stop at our house,” she said.

As if that’s not enough, the home of Mike and Jen Momyer, 508 Highland Ave., will show scary old movies and cartoons outdoors. Dry ice will make it look as if the house is covered in a spooky fog.

Lorenzo thanks Rick Byerly and Derek Miller for help constructing the corn tunnel and several other displays. She also thanks Tom Burleigh for expenses for treats, and her office staff at Punxsy Dental Inc.

Zamperini said the trick-or-treaters will receive treat bags and a second surprise bag, as well as Glow Stick necklaces courtesy of Nationwide Insurance-The Kengersky Agency, as an extra safety measure.
Children and their families from all over the borough are invited to trick-or-treat from 6 to 9 p.m. in the East End Saturday.

Bill Murray of REACT said the group will man all stop signs and crosswalks along East Mahoning Street to keep the kids safe.

Trick-or-treaters are reminded to visit only homes with the porch lights on.