The UM fraternities’ and sororities’ traditional Greeks and Goblins event brought trick-or-treating, a costume contest and other Halloween fun to local children Friday afternoon behind the Pi Kappa Alpha house.
This year the Greeks invited not only the families of UM faculty and staff, but also families living in the area surrounding the UM campus.
This initiative comes from the newly established College Town program, an effort to reach out to the Coral Gables community to become involved with the University.
“This is great,” said Dr. Pat Whitely, vice-president for Student Affairs, who attended the event along with her husband and neighbors. “It’s wonderful that the fraternities and sororities have reached out to the community.”
The event included food stands for trick-or-treating, fishing, face-painting and crafts booths.
There was also an area set up for photo opportunities, a costume contest and a visit from Sebastian the Ibis, decked out in a jack-o-lantern costume.
“This is fabulous – it makes the neighbors feel involved in the community,” said Diane James, who brought a toddler to the event. “It’s terrific.”
“It’s a nice, safe environment to bring the kids to, and it’s a pretty diverse crowd,” said Teresa Miller, who brought her two young sons. “This is our first time, and we will definitely come again.”
The kids agreed.
“I like the fishing,” said Donovan, who was dressed up as a Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtle. “I won a prize.”
“The music and the food are good,” said Joshua, wearing a black cloak and gory mask.
College Town began in September with the mailing of an informational packet sent to each of the households in the surrounding UM area.
Among several invitations sent in the packet, one invited families to bring their children trick-or-treating to Greeks and Goblins.
“I got the invitation in the mail, and even though I didn’t RSVP I was able to come,” said a Coral Gables resident and mother of two children at the event. “It’s great that they’re inviting the community, especially since we already love the ‘Canes.”
This is the first time UM has launched a neighbor outreach initiative of this kind.
“Before, we hadn’t been able to allocate the resources for it,” Whitely said. “This year we formed a sub-committee to specifically carry this out.”
The next event for College Town is still being planned, but administration says it will most likely be a concert or a picnic sometime during spring.
For more information on College Town, contact Media Relations at 305-284-5353.
Patricia Mazzei can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.