Luke, Wesley and Elsie Stevens smile alongside  other trick-or-treaters as they walk down Franklin Street Monday afternoon during the downtown trick-or-treat event. (Clarise Larson / Juneau Empire)

Halloween is back in business: Downtown trick-or-treating returns

Thrills and chills

Orange Balloons lined the downtown sidewalks Monday afternoon as dozens of kids walked business to business in search of sugar.

For the first time since the pandemic started, the downtown trick-or-treat tradition returned to the capital city with dozens of businesses opening their doors for trick-or-treaters young and old to snag a piece or two of candy while dressed in their finest costumes in celebration of Halloween.

The event has been a Juneau staple for more than five years, put on by the local business Kindred Post. However, due to the pandemic, the event had been canceled in recent years.

Kendra Hergett, the manager at Kindred Post, said she was “super excited” for the event to be back this year after some time without it. She said around 50 businesses signed up prior to the Halloween event, and she expected hundreds of kids to be out and about during the four hour event.

A child dressed as a witch grabs some candy while walking down Franklin Street Monday afternoon in search for candy during the downtown trick-or-treat event. The event has been a Juneau staple for more than five years, put on by the local business Kindred Post. However, due to the pandemic, the event had been canceled in recent years. (Clarise Larson / Juneau Empire)

A child dressed as a witch grabs some candy while walking down Franklin Street Monday afternoon in search for candy during the downtown trick-or-treat event. The event has been a Juneau staple for more than five years, put on by the local business Kindred Post. However, due to the pandemic, the event had been canceled in recent years. (Clarise Larson / Juneau Empire)

Luke and Wesley Stevens were making their way down Franklin Street at the beginning of the event dressed as “Numberblocks” characters. Their dad, who joined them dressed as a Jedi, said he made the costumes himself and they took around three hours each. The pair’s parents said they had participated in the event along with their sister, Elsie, since it began years back, and were happy to be a part of the fun now that it’s back once again.

From left to right, Tressa Millam, Danny Ruesch, Marcus Brown, Jaime Ryan, smile in their matching Care Bears onesies. The group of SEARHC employees stood outside the Front Street Clinic Monday afternoon handing out candy, reflective safety gear and non-toxic chalk. (Clarise Larson / Juneau Empire)

From left to right, Tressa Millam, Danny Ruesch, Marcus Brown, Jaime Ryan, smile in their matching Care Bears onesies. The group of SEARHC employees stood outside the Front Street Clinic Monday afternoon handing out candy, reflective safety gear and non-toxic chalk. (Clarise Larson / Juneau Empire)

Kyle Sage, manager at the Mt. Juneau Trading Post, donned a Frankenstein’s monster mask as he stood outside the business waving to kids as they grabbed some candy. He said Mt. Juneau Trading Post bought around 10-12 giant bags of candy from Costco in preparation for the return of trick-or-treaters and said he wouldn’t be surprised if all was done by the end of the event.

Children grab some candy at the table set up outside the SEARHC Front Street Clinic Monday afternoon. The downtown trick-or-treat tradition returned to the capital city with dozens of businesses opening their doors for trick-or-treaters young and old to snag a piece or two of candy while dressed in their finest costumes in celebration of Halloween. (Clarise Larson / Juneau Empire)

Children grab some candy at the table set up outside the SEARHC Front Street Clinic Monday afternoon. The downtown trick-or-treat tradition returned to the capital city with dozens of businesses opening their doors for trick-or-treaters young and old to snag a piece or two of candy while dressed in their finest costumes in celebration of Halloween. (Clarise Larson / Juneau Empire)

“It’s good to see people out and about again,” Sage said. “It’s good for the community, great for the kids — it’s just a good time.”

“It’s so fun,” said Leeann Thomas, the owner of the Triangle Bar. Thomas wore a decorative bird mask and stood at a table giving out candy outside the bar on the corner of Front and Franklin Street. She said she bought around five or six giant bags of candy, which is less than what she would normally buy in previous years.

Thomas said the Triangle has been participating in the event since it started, and she said it was great to see it come together again this year.

“This is the kind of stuff we need downtown, it’s great to see multiple generations walking around downtown,” she said. “I’ve even seen some grandparents getting in on the fun.”

• Contact reporter Clarise Larson at clarise.larson@juneauempire.com or (651)-528-1807. Follow her on Twitter at @clariselarson.

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