Ghouls and princesses took over the playground area of Ponderosa Elementary School on October 26 as the school hosted its annual Halloween Happening.
“We’re doing it for community building so people can see each other outside of the classrooms,” said PTA President Tracy Lay. “The teachers will be here manning some of the games and stations so the students will get to see some of their teachers and the parents are here to help each other out and get to know each other.”
According to Ponderosa Principal Meg Jackson, the event offered “old-fashioned fun” for the entire student body. From a cupcake walk to lollipop tree, match game to ring toss there was something for all ages to enjoy. There was even a pumpkin-carving contest. But, one of the not-to-be-missed activities was visiting the Pocket Witch.
“At about 5:30 one of our kindergarten teachers will come out here with a witch hat and hair and a long apron with pockets,” said Jackson. “The kids buy these tickets and they get to, for a ticket, reach into her pocket and at 6:30, I get to be the pocket witch.”
Admission to the event was free, but pre-sale tickets to play the games and purchase food were sold for 20 cents apiece. Tickets were 25 cents each on the day of the event. As one of the biggest fundraisers of the year for Ponderosa, the funds raised will support many of the school’s underserved programs.
“The money that we raise from this event goes toward a couple of things,” said Jackson. “We have a computer lab that we update from time to time. We just bought some new computers in the lab and the money will go to technology updates and licenses for certain programs. We also try to support some art programs. We’ll hire Starting Arts and Starting Arts will come in and do a rotation of theater or dance for our kids. We also support some library books and classroom library materials so those are some of the basic things [these funds will go to].”
In addition to parents and teachers, Peterson Middle School and Wilcox and Santa Clara High School students served as volunteers at the event.
“My nephew attends Ponderosa and I came with my sister,” said Wilcox High School senior Selena Magallon. “I’m just here to help the kids have a good time.”