An October in New Paltz isn’t complete without the famous Halloween parade. This year’s parade was back on with a huge turnout after last year’s cancellation due to COVID-19.
The Village board and the New Paltz Rotary Club gave their approval of the parade on Oct. 5.
The kids and parents of New Paltz public schools (and some festive pets) met at the middle school and at 6 p.m. they kicked off the parade by marching down Main St. in some pretty creative costumes. There was a kid dressed up in a giant inflated balloon animal costume, and one couple dressed with one as peanut butter and the other one as jelly.
There were also a lot of characters from recent movies. Some of the Avengers showed up to march and even some villains like Loki and Cruella DeVille along with one of her dalmatians. Prehistoric creatures like a T-Rex and other dinosaurs were spotted walking down Main St. as well.
Although this was a big step for the town towards returning to normal after COVID-19, there were still some precautions that had to be taken. The parade was outdoors but some participants and onlookers chose to wear masks.
Some families went trick or treating door to door like normal, but others chose to go to the “Grab n Go” stations around town. They were set up in places like the farmer’s market lot and the Elting Library and kids could pick them up 3 p.m. through 5 p.m. before the parade began.
With the new Delta variant, some families were being extra careful, especially if they know someone who is immunocompromised. The purpose of these stations was to ensure that every family, even those who did not feel comfortable being close to people or going door to door could still enjoy some candy on the holiday. Masked volunteers were running the stands making sure that the marchers got a candy bag.
Along with the parade there were other fun things planned around town. The Historic Huguenot Street had its annual Haunted Street Tours where former New Paltz residents tell stories of tragedy and demise.
The Rhinebeck Artist’s shop of New Paltz will have its “Tiny Terrors” art show on display until Thanksgiving.
Other events for kids were a screening of the movie “Coco” in Hasbrouck Park, a haunted house fundraiser and the Millbrook preserve Fall Festival and Fund Drive with scavenger hunts, arts and crafts and seasonal treats.
You can still see the artwork from the window painting event around town created by students in grades 5-12.
As annual events like the Halloween parade make their return, it’s important to stay safe while having fun.