The skies were crystal clear last Saturday as a team of superheroes and princesses descended upon the Shepherd Lower Field Playground. The Flash zoomed in, Princess Ariel did her best backstroke, and a squad of first responders rolled up in their emergency vehicles.
Actually, those heroes weren’t available, but their costumes assembled and were ready to be delivered to the neighborhood children.
Saving Money. Having More Fun.
We had a wonderful time at the 2017 Shepherd Halloween Costume Exchange. It was a fun opportunity to meet new neighbors and swap some perfectly good Halloween costumes with other families. The National Retail Federation says that Halloween is the third most expensive holiday, with consumers spending more than $8.4 billion each year on costumes, decorations and candy. Though many of us love to shop, the stores will do without our contribution this year!
While other communities have implemented exchanges in the past, Shepherd Park, Takoma and Brightwood haven’t had a widely advertised swap in quite a while. Operating under the theme, “Re-Use, Re-Cycle, Re-Scare!”, I thought that this event would be a simple and fun way for my business to be of service to the neighborhood.
Neighbors were very generous and several donated costumes to the swap. While all the girl’s costumes were claimed by attendees, we ended up with several extra boy’s costumes. Those spare costumes will be donated to our local Goodwill center, which makes this event an even bigger win.
We had fantastic help promoting and organizing the event from the capable ladies of M.E.S. Event Planning. Our preteen daughter Savannah and her friends Micah and Eva have gotten bitten by entrepreneurship bug. When they asked us if they could help, we said, “Sure, send us a proposal.”
With an assist from Laura Levine, neighbor and CEO of the JumpStart Coalition, they did just that. Laura forwarded them a kid’s business plan from Junior Achievement. Within a few days, the girls returned a complete proposal, including pricing for supplies and labor. M.E.S. helped with setting up, breaking down and serving snacks and they did a wonderful job. If you need assistance with your next local event, consider giving them a call.
Everyone Loves a Winner
Overall, we had a blast organizing and hosting the Halloween Costume Exchange. It was a great excuse to get out and enjoy the Shepherd Field playground, which is one of our favorite neighborhood amenities. In addition to the fun, it is satisfying to think that each of the families who joined in on the swap saved $15 to $30 for every costume that they exchanged.
Ready for the Big Day
I look forward to seeing all of you at the World-Famous Shepherd Halloween Parade, which will take place on Tuesday, October 31 at 6 pm on the Shepherd Lower Field. See you there!