Far from dark and spooky, the “spirit” hovering over Children's Hospital Central California on Oct. 31 brought light-hearted smiles and laughter. Patients and their families, together with Hospital employees and volunteers, took to the halls of Children's Hospital for the annual Halloween parade.
“Don’t forget to say, ‘Trick or treat.’” prompted a costumed volunteer to a patient awed by the sight of a wagon brimming with toys and goodies.
Two witches rode over on their brooms from Children’s Home Care to join in the fun. They brought along a jack-o-lantern filled with tootsie pops draped with tissue and embellished to look like ghosts.
Several volunteers also made a special trip to Children’s for the event. For safety reasons, the Hospital requires a volunteer to escort any trick-or-treater not accompanied by a parent or other family member. By giving an hour of their time, these dedicated volunteers make sure every patient permitted to leave his or her room can participate in the fun.
The parade of costumed children began at 2 p.m., encountering smiling faces everywhere they went. Our patients also came across employees who enjoyed dressing up every bit as much as they did. A gingerbread man and a clown, a troupe dressed in red and black mariachi attire, and a big, buzzing bumblebee joined dozens of other Hospital employees who passed out candy. Merlin waved his magic wand and made his big black bowl of candy disappear soon after the tail end of the parade passed him by.
Children's Hospital Central California thanks everyone who helped make this year’s “hardly haunted” Halloween a success, with special thanks to the Spirit of Halloween retailers who once again donated hundreds of brand new costumes for our patients.