Trick-or-Treating Postponed, May Move to Sat.

Newtown police ask residents to forgo trick-or-treating on Halloween on Main Street due to aftermath of Storm Alfred.

Trick-or-treating on Main Street, a long-held tradition in Newtown has been called off, at least for Monday, as a result of the , officials said.

First Selectman Pat Llodra said that she is considering re-scheduling the trick-or-treating to Sat., Nov. 5 when the town has many other festivities scheduled, such as the . She said she is trying to coordinate with Borough Warden Jim Gaston on rescheduling, and would be dependent on weather that day.

Newtown police also said conditions make it too dangerous to have trick-or-treaters out.

Newtown police issued the following statement:

"After a meeting of Town Officials and Local Emergency Management personnel it was determined that due to the recent snow storm and major power outages it would not be safe to proceed with the activities (Trick or Treat) normally held on Main Street for Halloween.

"A fragile and compromised utility infrastructure is still in the process of being remediated. Numerous down trees on power lines and blocked roadways have created safety concerns on numerous roads and sidewalks not only in Newtown but much of the State. Many people are without power. Snow is still blocking many sidewalks and use of the roadway for Trick or Treating would be unsafe at this time.

"The possibility of tree limbs falling and slippery surface conditions contribute to the unsafe conditions. The situation is as bad or worse than the damage caused by Hurricane Irene in September. Parents are strongly recommended not to bring their children to Main Street due to these conditions."

Jim Gaston October 31, 2011 at 04:05 PM
Hi Hoa, Pat and I agreed Sunday that with electric lines and trees down across Main Street properties and Main Street sidewalks, the loss of power on parts of Main Street, as well as trees and electrical lines down across Newtown roads the traditional Halloween on Main Street should be postponed for safety reasons. I understand the Chief of Police concur. Next Saturday evening is the objective to keep the tradition alive, dependent upon the progress of work clearings and power restoration. I'm sure everyone will do their best, including the generous Main Street residents. Let's work together. I'm optomistic. We'll keep you informed. Thanks!
Jim Gaston October 31, 2011 at 04:08 PM
P.S. We all fully understand that the timing may be short notice for Main Street residents and all may not be able to participate. We'll do the best we can. Thanks to all, including the Main Street residents for their kind understanding.
Hoa Nguyen October 31, 2011 at 05:31 PM
From Amy Mangold, director of parks and recreation: The Newtown Parks and Recreation Department has 118 bags of candy from Halloween Party Donations and the Big Y. We will continue to collect donations throughout the week and our department at 3 Main Street and will deliver it to Main Street residents on Friday, Nov. 4th. Happy Halloween.
Jim Gaston October 31, 2011 at 05:46 PM
Just a heads up, there are some legitimate concerns about postponing to Saturday, November 5th as it will conflict with the Radio Flagpole Cafe show at Edmond Town Hall, will create the heavier combined traffic, and the short notice to Main Street residents may create difficulties. November 5th was a suggestion subject to work completion and power restoration. Please stay tuned with the Bee and Patch, and hopefully in a day or so we will have a better consensus as to where we stand as to the date and time, if it can go forward. Sorry for the inconvenience. Thank you.
patty November 01, 2011 at 12:53 AM
Yes I agree next sat would be great. Thank you Newtown for thinking of the children.
Sally Lynn MacDonald November 03, 2011 at 04:43 PM
Hoping for an update soon? It would brighten their 'spirits'.
Jim Gaston November 03, 2011 at 09:03 PM
Halloween and Labor Day on Main Street are two of our favorite events. Indeed, these are just two of the many Hallmarks in Newtown that make it 'Nicer in Newtown'. After inspecting the area and speaking with individuals, as optomistic and anxious as I was to have Main Street Halloween on Saturday, November 5th, I'm afraid for safety and Town resource purposes Halloween will take a pass this year. I know this disappoints many, myself included, but in good conscience there are low hanging electrical lines near sidewalks and across Main Street properties, as well as downed trees that create significant night time hazards. I think we all hoped otherwise. In addition, having 1000-3000 children on Main Street requires additional police assistance. The police resources are taxed already by the cleanup and power restoration. When presently more than 50% of Newtown properties are still without power (and despite the CL&P claims of 99% power by Sunday) I would expect there still to be a significant % of people without power by Saturday. Despite the fun of Halloween, our first use of Police and town resources should be to help those without utility services. There is much hardship going on. Individual Main Street homeowners of course may entertain Pumpkin or Trick o' Treaters informally, if they wish, however the Hallmark event needs to be canceled. As a Main Street resident myself, we promise next year to continue the great tradition. Thank you for everyone's understanding.
Catherine November 04, 2011 at 12:56 AM
Mr. Gaston, It is not your call to cancel Halloween. You are not First Selectman
Mel November 04, 2011 at 02:09 AM
I find it hard to believe that the town cannot do something for Halloween. I understand the stress of the current situation, as I am also still without power and live right down the street from the staging area and 0.25 miles from Rt 25, for goodness sake! But the tradition of Halloween is something children and families plan for and look forward to for months before Halloween actually arrives. I find it hard to believe that the town can't organize something. I understand that Main Street might not be the optimum spot this year (btw, you folks on Main Street do a tremendous job with Halloween every year - my hats off to you and all of the work you put into decorating and preparing. Thank you very much for making Halloween so special for everyone). With all of the bags of candy that have been donated, could stands be set up at Fairfield Hills for a few hours Saturday evening (or some other time soon) so that the children and their families can come out in their costumes and have some fun during this terrible time. If that suggestion won't work, I am certain something else can work - even Bethel is hosting a trick-or-treat event at their Muncipal Center. This has been a very trying ordeal for the people of Newtown (especially since it comes only two months after the last marathon power outage). We really need something to lift our 'spirits'.
Jim Gaston November 04, 2011 at 02:42 AM
Catherine, the First Selectman asked me to make the call as Warden of the Borough. Thanks for the question. And thanks Mel for the kind words. We all on Main Street appreciate it!! This was a difficult decision, but I think the right one. Many Main Street families like mine spend a great deal of time and money on creating fun themes. This year we spent more than a thousand dollars on the theme, costumes and candy. I assure all, it was not a decision made lightly.
Marie November 04, 2011 at 03:43 AM
I understand that safety is of utmost concern, especially when children are involved. I do not believe there is a Connecticut resident right now that hasn't experienced a clear example of unsafe conditions this week. Yet, after everything we been through, our children have been through, you now decide to cancel the one thing that has made my kids excited this week. Its bad enough they believe I moved them to a Town that doesn't celebrate Halloween but to tell them twice its been cancelled. Would you like to be the one to deliver the news ?! I agree with Mel, an alternative is essential to renew this Towns spirits, our children's spirits. I'm sure you'll have no problems making sure Voting Day goes on without a Hitch! It's a shame you don't have the same commitment to the children and families that have already gone through so much this week!
Joanne November 05, 2011 at 05:01 PM
Why can't we just have Halloween today. Think of the children. The streets are cleared by now and it is safe. You are disappointing many.
Mary Ann Jacob November 05, 2011 at 05:50 PM
St Rose is hosting a trunk or treat tonight for all kids. Sounds like a great alternative that will Leo IDE the kids with a fun evening!
Mary Ann Jacob November 05, 2011 at 05:51 PM
St Rose is hosting a trunk or treat tonight for all kids. Sounds like a great alternative that will give the kids with a fun evening!


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