Safe Halloween at FHS

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Hailey Timmerman and Michael Varriale

Farmingdale High School this year hosted a new program called “Safe Halloween.” This event gave the children of the community an opportunity to have a fun and safe halloween experience and a chance to see the high school itself. At Safe Halloween you found rooms of different themes including princesses, Yellow Brick Road of Oz, fighting pirates, superheroes, and a fairy forest! The kids were able to participate in activities like trick or treating at classrooms, picking pumpkins, and hand painting. 

After talking to Mr. Beck, one of the organizers of this event, we learned what went into making it happen, where the idea came from, and who was involved. Mr. Beck said, “Well, when I created the scope of the classes for our Theatre program here at Farmingdale, I wanted the year 4 class to really be something that demonstrated the student’s knowledge from producing, directing, stage managing, acting, etc. Basically, it would be a way to show off what they have learned in the last four years. I wanted the class to be something civic-minded that would benefit the entire Farmingdale community as theatre is something that is meant to be shared. I had remembered my daughter attending a Safe Halloween when she was younger. I liked the idea, so I wanted to grow it and make it an experience here in the Farmingdale community.” Fourth year theatre students had the very important role of being the project managers: conceiving, designing, and implementing they’re chosen themes. The people involved also all had key roles in making this the great event it was. The Art Honor Society and The Thespian Honor Society helped implement the students artistic visions and create an immersive environment. Other organizations and clubs such as the Farmingdale PTA, Student Government Association, Playcrafters, as well as the English/Theatre Department contributed financially to help this project succeed.  

The event was an amazing success. “It went amazingly.  We had about 1500 visitors from the community of all ages. There was a bit of wait at some point due to the rush of people we received, but we tried to keep it organized and moving. We received lots of feedback from community members who really enjoyed it and hope it will continue for years to come,” said Mr. Beck. The reactions from the participants were just as positive, full of high fives and tons of smiles. This event wouldn’t have been as amazing as it was without the help of the students. The students helped to build and create the settings and decorate the rooms, but they also helped to spread the word and encourage people to come to the event. On the day of the event, students sold popcorn, helped keep everyone organized, ran the activities, and painted hands. Alexa Nazario, a student involved in the event, said, “Safe Halloween was a fun time for adults and kids. As an actor, it was enjoyable to interact with all the kids and parents.”  

So, what is in store for the future of a Safe Halloween? Mr. Beck says he can see this event coming back next year. With all the feedback they received from kids and parents, there’s so much room to make this event even better in the future. Hopefully next year can bring more smiles and high fives to all the kids in the community.

* Photo courtesy of Mr. Beck