Seeley Swan Pathfinder -

By Andi Bourne

Sam's Spooky Carnival a Scream


Andi Bourne, Pathfinder

Although he wouldn't go through the haunted room, Sam Welch gets hug from one of zombies that was trapped inside. Aiden Posthumus and Lilium Young wait their turn for a hug.

SEELEY LAKE - Super heroes, zombies, princesses and furry creatures filled Citizens Alliance Bank (CAB) in Seeley Lake for the first annual Sam's Spooky Carnival. There were games, prizes, food and a haunted room for those brave enough to enter.

The carnival was inspired by Seeley Lake Elementary first-grader Sam Welch when he approached CAB with the idea. He and his best friend Aero Bernstrauch attended the CAB's family carnival in the summer and thought CAB should do a Halloween carnival for children.

CAB presented Welch with the "key" to the carnival. He promptly opened the door for everyone to enter and made sure he got his photo with the junior high and high school volunteers working the carnival. Once inside Welch enjoyed all the games and prizes with his friends and other members of the community.

"He kept saying, 'They did that too,'" said Welch's mother Kris Martin. "He had no idea they would do so many of his ideas. But he had no intention of going in the haunted house [even though it was his idea]."

While some of the children in attendance loved the haunted house, most were too scared to go in. First-grader Ariana Lord said the haunted house was her favorite because, she said, "It scared my Nana [grandmother]." Lord herself was not scared by it.

Andi Bourne, Pathfinder

Sophomore Lexi Carpenter painting Delsin Tongen's face during the carnival.

Welch's favorite activities were the Balloon Pop and Zombie Shoot. He threw darts at candy-filled balloons in the balloon pop. Young zombie slayers had the option of a Nerf bow-and-arrow or gun in the Zombie Shoot. Volunteer senior Stephanie Robbins said that the bow-and-arrow definitely took more skill but the children loved them both.

Other activities included a spider find; coloring and costume contests; putt-putt golf game and face painting.

Senior Kyle Rathman said he volunteered to take photos for the costume contest to "do it for the community." While Rathman definitely had his favorite costumes, the winners will be announced later in the week with the coloring contest winners.

"Everyone here at the bank did an awesome job," said Welch's father George. "They really outdid themselves."

"I think it was a great success," said CAB's Carnival Organizer Cheryl Lewis. "We had fantastic help and support from the high school and [Seeley Lake Trailblazers] 4H Club."


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