Bogalusa elders prove Halloween’s not just for kids

Published 11:25 pm Saturday, November 2, 2013

When most people think of those enjoying the fun of dressing up and embracing the innocent joy of holiday events such as Halloween parties and harvest festivals, the images that come to mind are those of little children. But in Bogalusa on Thursday, Halloween, senior citizens in a couple of different locations proved that the young at heart can have fun, too.

Visitors to the Senior Center and residents of Resthaven Living Center took full advantage of the opportunity to express themselves as their alter egos or to take action under the cloak of a disguise as they celebrated.

At the Senior Center, costumed elders and those not so readily inclined to stray from their traditional attire lined up before lunch to play games appropriate to the occasion while the classic Halloween song, “Monster Mash,” filled the air. A cauldron of chocolate candies and another receptacle for “jack-o-lantern teeth,” otherwise known as candy corn, sat ready.

Mary Distefano danced and Donna Carroll clowned around with the active participants while some of the more sedate looked on smiling or checked out the tables laden with chips, vegetables and dip, and other party fare, much of it in bowls decorated with pictures of bats and haunted houses.

At Resthaven, the party got started in the afternoon, and the big event room was soon rocking with music provided by regular Thursday visitors Keith and Donna Boudreaux. Colleen Fisher, the center’s financial coordinator, who was dressed as a nun, quickly showed she was no pushover by winning a rather wild and certainly enthusiastic game of musical chairs.

Residents and members of the staff danced, some on their feet and others in their chairs, and even those who were wearing ghoulish face paint topped it off with smiles.

The sounds of laughter regularly punctuated the air as social worker Tamira Smith stood next to a Thanksgiving tree adorned with acknowledged and written blessings and ladled out the orange punch to go along with cupcakes and sandwiches.

Alva Meyers made the rounds, visiting and savoring the fun. Halloween isn’t just for kids, he said. It’s just right for seniors who are young at heart.

“We can just let loose,” Meyers said. “We can act crazy and bring back our youth!”

The spirit, maybe in this case the benevolent ghostly kind, never ages.