Southwood community hosts Fall Festival
Witches, vampires, princesses and superheroes scurried about as Southwood neighbors and friends gathered for their annual Halloween Festival. Featuring hayrides, a costume contest, trick or treating with candy donated by residents, and hotdogs, the festival was an opportunity for everyone at Southwood to gather and celebrate the fall holiday in a safe and fun environment.
“Southwood resident volunteers work for months to make this a fun and engaging event for everyone,” said Will Keenan, Southwood’s Community Engagement Specialist. “It’s great to see so many generations of residents come out to enjoy the day together, seeing the joy on their faces makes all the hours spent planning worth it.”
11-year old Estephanie Lopez-Fernandez was excited to have a chance to celebrate Halloween early with her friends and family. “I’ve been looking forward to this – we come here every year.”
For the past two months, long-time community member Joann Pugh and a group of residents met on Thursday evenings to bring their vision for the Halloween celebration to life. “Halloween is one of the things that we get together and do every year,” said Joanne. “I brought invitations to my neighbors and made sure they all knew about it.”
The festival was especially appealing to Joann because she could use the crafting skills she had learned while working at a design studio decorating for events like parties and weddings. With her neighbors, Joann helped create the ghoulish monsters and creepy spider webs that transformed Southwood’s community center for the festivities.
For Joann, this celebration is about more than a single afternoon with neighbors. “There are so many different people living here at Southwood, but when you talk to them, you realize they all want pretty much the same thing,” said Joann. “They want their kids to go to school, for everyone to get along. It’s a community – we want to be together.”