Thousands are expected to show for trick-or-treating in downtown Cartersville on Halloween, the final go for what has been an annual event for the Downtown Development Authority.
Downtown establishments are set to welcome children dressed in Halloween costumes Oct. 31, from 3 to 5 p.m., packing the sidewalks and streets of the business district.
"Not only is [trick-or-treating] a safety concern of the DDA and city of Cartersville, it is a significant economic drain on the DDA, which is a nonprofit organization," DDA Manager Tara Currier said in a statement. "It is unclear exactly how this event came to fall under the DDA, whose overarching mission is to enhance the economic prosperity and vitality of the downtown business district, [to] which downtown trick-or-treating does not adhere."
Purchasing candy, signage for the event and other items related to the event have totaled near $1,000 over each of the previous few years. It is for these reasons that this will be the final year of downtown trick-or-treating.
With few Cartersville and Bartow County neighborhoods and strip malls participating trick-or-treating, what happens next year?
Currier said DDA officials recognize downtown trick-or-treating "is a community event many have become accustomed to participating year-after-year, and the DDA does plan to work closely with the city of Cartersville, as well as any other interested parties, in moving the event to a more constrained, and thus safer venue for the future."
Where should our kids trick-or-treat—downtown; at strip malls, such as Target's Cherokee Place; in neighborhoods or at church trunk-or-treats? Tell us in the comments below.
Following the March resignation of former DDA executive director Liz Hood and the search for her replacement, Currier in July took the reins as DDA manager," The Daily Tribune News reported.
"As the new DDA manager, I have stressed to downtown merchants that I am here to serve them and that moving forward, I want to be sure that any and all events planned and implemented by the DDA are both supported by and beneficial to the businesses in which I work for," Currier said in the press release. "I am currently reviewing all events and activities that the DDA has historically sponsored, and after careful consideration of this event, have—along with the board of directors—deemed that the DDA shall no longer spearhead trick-or-treating in the downtown business district."