10-31-2019 Halloween fun in Coloma a grand success Haunted bus, pumpkin cars, trunks full of candy,

OUTSTANDING SERVICE… Corky Openneer (left) was presented a plaque by Ken Dietz, Watervliet Public Schools Athletic Director at the beginning of the Watervliet Varsity Football game on Friday, Oct. 25, 2019. The plaque acknowledges Outstanding Service to the Watervliet Panthers and states that since 1986 Openneer has dedicated his Friday nights to Panther Football, representing the Watervliet VFW Post, by raising the flag for our national anthem. The Watervliet Panther Athletic Department admires and appreciates his service and commitment to the school and community.

Halloween fun in Coloma a grand success Haunted bus, pumpkin cars, trunks full of candy, and a turtle (yes, a turtle!)

By Nancy Albright

Despite the cold and rainy weather, lots of fun was had by all in Coloma at the city’s annual Halloween in the Park celebration.

During the Coloma City Commission meeting on Monday, Oct. 28, Mayor Pro-Tem Marsha Hammond thanked all those involved for the hard work that went into making the event a success. “We are grateful that our volunteers braved the weather and stayed all afternoon to help.” Community members, students, teachers, sponsors, police, fire, Public Works, the Lions, Freshwater Church and many others worked together to shovel popcorn, grill up a thousand hot dogs, hand out candy, and organize games to make Halloween fun for the kids.

HALLOWEEN IN THE PARK… Youngsters and their guardians braved the rain Saturday for the annual Halloween in the Park in downtown Coloma.

Coloma Community Schools’ Resource Officer Dan Stuglik worked with students to create a haunted school bus and the Lions organized the Pumpkin Derby. Both were big hits. There were 20 derby entries and according to Hammond, all 20 were awesome. “They’re like soap box derby cars made with pumpkins. The kid who won Best in Show made a turtle car out of a long gourd laid between two pumpkins, and he used the tail of a pumpkin to represent the tail of the turtle. When I asked him about it he told me the painted turtle is the official reptile of the State of Michigan.”

“Even though people may not have stayed all afternoon because of the rain, we had a better turnout than we thought we would. People came out for popcorn, hot dogs, Trunk-or-Treat, the pumpkin derby and good music provided by Tom Gear,” said Hammond. “I had no idea there are so many songs about rain that could fill two hours!