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Ghoul times to roll at Halloween Hoot

By Andrea Brunty

Let the ghoul times roll Saturday at Halloween Hoot with music, games, contests and much more spooky fun in downtown Decatur.

Second Avenue Southeast will be closed to make room for more than 60 art and crafts booths, entertainment stages, a moon walk and inflatable slide. The event runs from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. A bingo booth with prizes is planned from noon to 3 on Bank Street.

Downtown merchants will offer candy to trick-or-treaters throughout the day.

Children can show off their costumes during a 4:30 p.m. parade from Gordon Drive and Second Avenue to the Princess Theatre Center for the Performing Arts.

The Hoot is flourishing as a "little down home" arts festival, as well as continuing some of its traditions, said Judith Tardy of the Downtown Merchants Association, which planned the event.

New this year is a Battle of the Bands, with the winner playing at The Brick on New Year's Eve, plus a variety of singers and musicians on two stages on Second Avenue.

Comical drama

Frankenstein's Monster, Igor, Dracula, the Mummy and the Werewolf will stir up comical drama at 6 p.m. with DreamWeavers' "I'm Sorry the Bridge Is Out, You'll Have to Spend the Night" at Princess Theatre. Tickets are $6 to $11, available at the theater beginning at 5.

The cast will host the best scream and best costume contests for the public at the Princess starting at 5.

Other activities include a sidewalk chalk art competition from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. and face painting from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. and a cake walk at The Brick.

Downtown shops will also offer sidewalk sales and raffle tickets. For every $10 of merchandise or food you spend at a sponsor's store, you receive a raffle ticket. Prizes are food, services or shopping gift certificates redeemable at stores downtown. The raffle drawing will be announced at 5.

"If nothing else, we're hoping people will support this to get people in the downtown area ... because we're alive and well," Tardy said.

Call 580-8100 for more information.

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