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In recent years, Hallowe'en fun and celebration in Brentwood-Darlington has been led by the BDNA

DAVID F. ASHTON - BDNA Chair Chelsea Powers awards the Best of Trunks Spook-Tacular award to the lively Beetlejuice (da Vinci Arts Middle School student Cash Fairman). On October 26th, the first Hallowe'en event held by Inner Southeast Portland neighbors – the Brentwood-Darlington Neighborhood Association (BDNA) "Spook-Tacular" – was, by far, their best-attended one they'd had of the six years so far.

The westerly parking lot of the Brentwood Darlington Community Center was filled with "Trunk-or-Treat" stations – the rear of each vehicle decked out in spooky-but-not-scary motifs, where kids walked up to get candy or non-edible toy treats and played games.

DAVID F. ASHTON - Inside the Community Center, a popular feature of the BDNA Spook-Tacular was taking photos with these cosplay-costumed heroes, PDX Avengers. BDNA Chair Chelsea Powers told THE BEE they'd used the online service Eventbrite to help promote the event – offering free tickets, helping them prepare for the party, and to get an attendance count.

"Inside the Community Center, we have snacks and treats, cookie decorating by Woodmere PTO volunteers, face painting by a local artist, and the "PDX Avengers" are standing buy to take photos with our guests," Powers told THE BEE.

It's more than just silly fun, she said. "This now our second largest community gathering, next to the 'Movies in the Park', and we produce it all with the help of our volunteers.

DAVID F. ASHTON - Snacks and crafts abounded inside the Community Center during this years BDNA Spook-Tacular. "And, it's a holiday that is recognized by our neighbors of many cultures – and this year we promoted it widely, with our door flyers and signs, not only in English, but also in Russian, Spanish, and Vietnamese.

"It's successful; we're seeing members of our communities here that we normally don't have at our events, making it the most culturally diverse event we've ever held," Powers pointed out.

By the time the Spook-Tacular was over, more than 500 people had attended. However, its future worries Powers, in light of the "Code Change" controversy at City Hall. "This could be our last Spook-Tacular if the City of Portland cuts our event liability insurance, and if we no longer can obtain a communications grant that helps us with the printing.

"It is our sincere hope that we can continue to hold community-building events, like these, to enhance community connections within our neighborhood," concluded Powers.


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