By Curt Yeomans
North Clayton High School began closing out the month on Thursday with an "Octoberfest" fall festival, but the lederhosen were out, while Blow Pops and "Transformers" costumes were in.
It was the first time the school had hosted an "Octoberfest" fall festival. The event was organized by North Clayton's Parent-Teacher Student Association (PTSA) as a fund-raiser for scholarships to seniors graduating at the end of the school year. The event included face painting, games, food, "trick-or-trunking," an inflatable bouncing device, and a performance by the school's marching band.
"This is one of our first fund-raisers of the year for our scholarship program," said North Clayton PTSA President Yolanda Fuller. "It's also a way to pull the community together in a safe environment."
About 100 people attended "Octoberfest," which carried a $1 admission fee, Fuller said. Fuller said between the admission fee, and the $25 vendor fee for student organizations to serve food, she expected the event netted approximately $200 for the PTSA scholarship fund.
Fuller said flyers promoting the "Octoberfest" were distributed to nearby elementary and middle schools, as well as day-care centers, in the weeks leading up the event.
Several young children came to the event dressed in costumes and carrying trick-or-treating bags or plastic, pumpkin-shaped baskets, to gather treats and gifts.
College Park residents and sisters, Shaelishia Stevens and Monica Prather, brought their children to the event so they would have an opportunity to do some trick-or-treating. They said they did not feel their neighborhoods were safe for trick-or-treating, and their children would only be allowed to take part in the traditional Halloween activity in safe environments.
Prather's son, Tyrik Bridley, 3, and Stevens' two older sons, Rakai Patterson, 5, and Kayden Patterson, 3, came dressed as characters from the "Transformers" movie franchise. Stevens carried her youngest son, 4-month-old Collin Patterson, who was dressed in a panda costume, during the event.
"We like the fact that it's a nice, safe environment for the kids to go trick-or-treating," Stevens said.
"It's good to see the school kids participating in helping make sure the kids have a good Halloween experience," Prather said.
Rakai Patterson said the marching band's performance was the best part of the event. "I liked the band because I liked seeing the Eagle [the school's costumed mascot]," he said.