My Favorite Day With Kids -- by Jane Kelley

On the last Saturday in October, the Brooklyn Botanical Garden usually hosts a fabulous festival called Ghouls and Gourds. Everyone is encouraged to wear costumes. 

Unfortunately this year large gatherings aren't safe. Masks have taken on an entirely different meaning. 

I'll miss being part of my favorite Halloween celebration. In the past, there were games for kids, musical events, and readings by authors. 

After sharing some of The Escapades of Clint McCool, I joined other authors at a row of tables. Kids and families came by to talk with us and get our signatures in their books. I loved having the chance to meet young readers. I brought a big sketch pad and encouraged kids to draw whatever they wanted. 

The day always ended in a huge costume parade.

But not this year.

Will Halloween be added to the long list of things decimated by SARS coronavirus 2? 

I sincerely hope not. The virus has altered the holiday. We can't send children door to door to get candy from strangers. But that is not the best part of Halloween.  

We can still carve pumpkins, still tell spooky stories, and still put on a costume. 

Even without the lure of chocolate, you can enjoy being creative and the chance to be someone you're not.

Come to think of it, that's what reading and writing is all about. 


  1. What a lovely tradition! So sorry you won't get to experience it this year. Enjoy your Halloween celebration Jane...being creative and sharing your books online.

  2. Yes! I think that's a big part of why Halloween's always been my favorite holiday. But that celebration...I don't think I've seen anything like it!


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