CRIDERSVILLE — A local village was filled with witches, superheroes and bumble bees, as they kicked off a community holiday tradition.
The village of Cridersville held their annual Halloween Parade and Festival on Monday evening down Main Street and in the fire station.
“It’s a community tradition,” Cridersville resident and costume contest emcee Stacey Myers Cook said.
Myers Cook said she was pleased with the overall turnout for the parade and festival.
“I was worried with the storm this morning, but it cleared up,” Myers Cook said, of the sunny 60-degree weather that the crowd enjoyed Monday.
Myers Cook said the parade and festival started in the late 1970s, when the Cridersville Businessmen’s Association started the event.
“I marched in it with the high school band,” said Myers Cook, who was a participant when she attended Wapakoneta High School.
Numerous vehicles and floats filled the streets of the town, including representatives from the Cridersville HealthCare Center, area fire stations and marching bands.
Immediately after the parade, residents congregated at the fire station to enjoy sandwiches, warm drinks and pumpkins pie, as they watched the costume contest.
Myers Cook said that the contest is the main attraction at the festival, and she along with Becky Bayliff helped host the event.
“We have about 85-100 kids that do the costume contest each year,” Myers Cook said.
The contest is divided up into age groups, and goes from birth to 15 years old.
Six-year-old Kaden Kohlrieser dressed up like a witch for the contest on Monday evening.
“My favorite part of Halloween is dressing up and the candy,” Kohlrieser said.
She also enjoyed the parade, because she said she got a lot of candy.
A Wapakoneta Middle School sixth-grader used her creativity to come up with a one-of-a-kind costume, that she wore to the festival.
Sarah Schmidt dressed up as a “girl with leopard print pajamas that wears too much pink lipstick.”
“I wanted to do red lipstick, but I couldn’t find any,” Schmidt said, of her make-up colors.
Schmidt, who had the opportunity to walk in the parade and hand out candy, said she enjoys participating in the parade. Last year, she handed out candy with her Girl Scout troop.
Schmidt’s favorite part of Halloween is dressing up.
“I like dressing up and seeing what everyone dresses up as,” Schmidt said.
Wapakoneta High School sophomore Brittany Williams said she enjoys coming to the Cridersville parade and festival because of the time spent with family.
“My favorite part is getting to hang out with my family,” Williams said.
With Halloween being her favorite holiday, Williams said she enjoys dressing up for it.
Local businesses, churches, the Cridersville Historical Society and Boy Scout troop also helped organize the event.