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Consecon hosts spooktacular Haunting in the Hamlet

Story and photos by Sharon Harrison
At a celebration of all things Halloween and autumn, it wasn’t difficult to get into the spirit of things Saturday as Consecon hosted its annual Haunting in the Hamlet.

Despite bone-chilling temperatures and the threat of flurries, the weather wasn’t too frightful as participants dressed up for the occasion. Participating area businesses and service organizations got into the haunting theme with ghoulish decorations, outlandish costumes and spooktacular events.

A costumed Blanca Zizman of Consecon took great delight in posing beside a coffin and hearse.

Cobwebs, skeletons, bats, gravestones and skulls were unusually plentiful around the village on this day of haunted fun including a coffin and a hearse.

Visitors dropped in at the Consecon United Church Hall to visit an assortment of spooky vendors and devour some scrumptious but scary-looking baked goods. The library was a favoured stop with crafts, story time and a photo opportunity complete with a green screen.

Participants enjoyed a drumming circle performed inside the Canadian Legion

The drumming circle moved inside the Consecon Legion where it was considerably warmer. The group, lead by Sherri Bergman, who is a drum circle facilitator and a Consecon resident, welcomed adults and children to join in chant drumming with an instrument of their choice.

“This is the third year we have done it at Haunting in the Hamlet with great success. The kids are just amazing and so receptive and we even get a few of the parents in there,” said Bergman. “It’s such a wonderful experience, it’s a community-building experience and it’s really incredible how much of a natural rhythm all the children have.”

One of the impromptu groups played for 20 minutes solid without stopping before Bergman broke it up with a little chant.

“We could have kept going, so it’s quite amazing that the kids have that much attention span and they were so uninhibited about choosing difference instruments, so it was really quite lovely,” said Bergman.

Haunting in the Hamlet, described by organizers as a Halloween and harvest festival was very much a family-focused occasion with events and fun for the tiniest toddler to tall grown-ups.

Inside the Masonic Hall, the zombie feast included blood-curdling limbs and body parts as well a variety of friendly games and crafts for younger children. There was also a mummy wrap station for those who wished to get the mummified look.

A parade of entrants in the seven and under category at the Halloween costume contest at Bayfield School gymnasium.

In the afternoon, Bayfield School gymnasium was host to a Halloween costume contest in several age categories which began with a parade of costumes. Prizes were handed out for scariest, cutest and most original costumes.

The group of entrants in the eight and above category at the Halloween costume contest at Bayfield School gymnasium.

Magician Randy Rodgers performing one of his mind tricks.

Following was mind magician Randy Rodgers who performed an entertaining interactive mentalist show to his enraptured audience.

The grim but fun day began with a pancake breakfast at the Consecon Legion Branch 509, and ran through to the late afternoon with a lantern-making workshop and a family-friendly holiday movie at Bayfield School.

Early evening events included a barbecue and open mic at the Legion and a dance for the 12- to 17-year-olds at the Masonic Hall.

Giant inflatable pumpkins and spiders decorated lawns and green spaces, ghosts and ghouls found themselves pinned to telephone poles and there were the traditional straw-stuffed scarecrows hanging around for the occasion.

And for those who wanted to tour the village, or to simply hop on and hop off at a specific location, The County Carriage Company brought a covered trolley complete with a creepy theme and black curtains. They provided blankets to keep patrons warm then chilled them with a few eerie stories. Of course they stopped at the graveyard, as the horses—Thomas and James —gently clip-clopped along the festively-decorated streets.

One tales shared was about the Fox sisters, who were born in Consecon, and went on to be known as the founders of the American spiritualist movement.

“They went on to become world-wide sensations and were considered the most famous people at the time. However, they didn’t develop their spiritual powers until they had moved away from Consecon and were living in upstate New York.”

Melissa MacDonald went all out with her Halloween costume and impressive make-up.

Eight-year-old Ellie-Jo Wheatcroft of Consecon dressed up as a corpse’s bride.

Vada Algar aged two-and-a-half in her ladybug outfit won the ‘cutest’ Halloween costume in the seven and under category.


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