Old Town won’t boo on you!

Merchants offer ‘Safe Treats’ Oct. 31
       Hundreds of children are expected - and welcome - in Old Colorado City for the annual Halloween Safe Treats activity starting at 3 p.m. Sunday, Oct. 31.
       “It's kind of a tradition for the Old Colorado City merchants,” said Lori Kasten of Kasten Accounting, one of the organizers.
       The event will include merchants handing out candy or other favors in their stores, costumed Manitou Springs Student Council members providing treats on the sidewalks and Meadow Muffins again hosting a best-costume event.
       There is no charge for any of the activities. Participating stores are those within the historic district on Colorado Avenue between 24th and 27th streets. Parents are encouraged to accompany smaller children.
       The free-candy time frame will be from 3 to 5 p.m., while the Halloween costume contest will be from 5 to 6:30 p.m. Participants will be judged in groups of ages 1 to 3, 4 to 6, 7 to 9, 10 to 14 and - new this year - parents. Meadow Muffins is at the northeast corner of Colorado Avenue and 25th Street.
       Merchants giving treats on the avenue has been going for many years, while the costume contest started more recently, according to Kasten. “It's a way of getting them to stay in Old Colorado City” (instead of just trick-or-treating and leaving), she said.

OWN ‘Ghost Story’ nights Oct. 29-30 Ghost-story readings in a spooky setting and (weather permitting) guided neighborhood walks will be featured activities at the first Old Colorado City Historic Halloween Ghost Story Reading and Tour Friday, Oct. 29 and Saturday, Oct. 30 at the Old Colorado City History Center, 1 S. 24th St.
       The event is sponsored by the Organization of Westside Neighbors (OWN), in conjunction with the Old Colorado City His- torical Society (OCCHS), as a fund-raiser for OWN's Westside historic-preservation effort.
       Admission will be $6 for adults and $3 for children under 16. Donations are also welcome.
       Times will be 5 to 8 p.m. both nights.
       Five local volunteers - three Westside elected officials and two experienced actors - will read the ghost stories. Included will be the tales of the candle-lighting ghost of the Palace Hotel; Maggie, the good-natured ghost of Cripple Creek; and Arthur Schlesinger, the melancholy ghost of Briarhurst and Glen Eyrie, who was killed in a duel in 1876.
       The elected officials who will be reading are Colorado Springs City Council members Jerry Heimlicher and Tom Gallagher and County Commissioner Sallie Clark. They will be joined by experienced actors David Rasmussen (known to many Westsiders from the Old Colorado City Branch Library), wh o has worked with the Star Bar, Encore and Castaways groups; and Don Moon of Red Herring Productions.
       Refreshments will be provided, including hot cider, coffee, tea and Halloween cookies.
       Parents are asked to use personal judgment in bringing children, based on the potentially scary nature of the event.
       According to Kristine Van Wert, vice president of OWN, the History Center will be decorated in a Halloween style, and “ghostly sounds” will fill its chambers.
       If the weather allows the walking tours, people will get a guided walk through the neighborhood, especially noting historic houses with Halloween decorations.
       Ninety percent of the proceeds will be used to cover photographic documentation costs in developing an inventory of about 4,000 historic Westside residential and commercial buildings, as part of an overall plan to implement a non-mandatory “overlay” zone that would guide and encourage their preservation. The other 10 percent will be donated to the History Center. OCCHS has already contributed $2,000 to the overlay effort.
       The proposed overlay area is bounded by Uintah Street on the north, I-25 on the east, Vermijo Street on the south and 30th Street on the west.

Westside Pioneer article