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A candy-coated, Kootenai-fied Halloween roundup

by MADISON HARDY
Staff Writer | October 30, 2021 1:07 AM

Halloween looks slightly different for everyone, including our Kootenai County residents, who responded to several Facebook polls this week to share their spooky traditions. 

The Press reached into the community through six different Facebook groups to get their take on their favorite Halloween-themed:

Costumes

Candies

Activities

Movies

Some locals are serious — maybe dead serious — about planning their Halloween costume. Coeur d'Alene resident Sarah Andrews took her friend's Babadook costume to a new level with a full face of paint, including dark-rimmed eyes and a giant smile filled with black, rotting teeth. 

"I did the makeup on this," Andrews commented with an attached photo. "All my handiwork." 

Others went a less frightful route. Post respondents listed numerous cutesy get-ups like a duck, avocado, donkey, deep-sea fish, a strawberry, a 1950s nurse, and of course, a bag o'spuds. 

"No pictures yet, but my daughter will be a sack of potatoes this year," Coeur d'Alene resident Natalie Sarver said. "It doesn't get more Idaho than that." 

Sharing an old photo in the thread, Post Falls resident Carol Dunster showed off handmade costumes made for her children in 1990. The young Munsters - sorry, Dunsters - stand posed in their red dragon, and gallant knight in shining armor outfits, ready to fight in what we can only guess was a battle for the ages. 

"I had so much fun making costumes and would use them for a couple of years, then donate to people in town," Dunster said. "I think my grandchildren finally wore out the knight's costume a few years ago." 

Post Falls resident JoAnn Kuhn and her daughter Evanna are also fans of handmade costumes. Every year the duo designs themed ensembles that incorporate Evanna's wheelchair. This time, the Kuhns are stepping out as a crazy cat lady and a cat in a box. 

"This year was easy," Kuhn said. "The handle of her wheelchair is her tail." 

Kootenai County costume creations will be on display Sunday eve as families participate in the No. 1 most voted-for tradition, trick or treating. Heading door-to-door or trunk-to-trunk reigned supreme with 39 of the total 169 votes cast by members of the Rathdrum Community News and PF INFO Facebook pages. 

What candy gets Kootenai County residents most excited to fill their pillowcases and dentists' bank accounts? According to 22 voters in the New to North Idaho and Everything NOT NEWS! In North Idaho groups, they're looking for Reese's Peanut Butter Cups. 

Other top contenders were Kit Kat, 1000 Grand bars, and Snickers. 

Candy corn, the triangular orange, yellow and white sweet that hits shelves specifically for fall festivities, received only one vote. Which, this reporter feels, is fair.

The second most beloved Halloween activity is putting up creepy décor around the house. Other traditions in the top five include: 

Walking through a corn maze or spending the day at a pumpkin patch — 29 votes

Carving pumpkins — 24 votes

Watching Halloween movies — 20 votes

Speaking of movies, The Coeur d'Alene Community Facebook Group members ranked one magical flick, Hocus Pocus, as the champion with 26 of the 62 votes cast. 

"It's a tradition every year to watch Hocus Pocus and Practical Magic," Coeur d'Alene Resident Britt Thurman said. "I love horror movies too, but the other two are my annual traditions." 

The classic Walt Disney movie tells the fantastical comedic tale of three witches revived by a teenage boy on Halloween night in no less than Salem, Massachusetts. Because where else would you find witches? 

A close second was Tim Burton's The Nightmare Before Christmas, with 15 votes. Arguably a film that viewers can enjoy throughout the holiday season, The Nightmare Before Christmas follows the so-called "King of Halloween, Jack Skellington, as he falls out of love with the ghoulish holiday. 

Though the movie received several award nominations, Kootenai County residents didn't think it deserved that coveted No. 1 spot. 

"Just watched Nightmare Before Christmas last night for the first time," Coeur d'Alene resident Kary Wells said. "It was good, but it was no Hocus Pocus!"

Other movies that The Coeur d'Alene Community members felt deserved an honorable mention include:

It's the Great Pumpkin Charlie Brown — nine votes

Practical Magic — four votes

Beetlejuice, Ghostbusters, and Hubie Halloween all tied with two votes.

Halloweentown and Friday the 13th also received one vote each.

"We love Jason/Friday the 13th," Post Falls resident Jordan Borg said. "Barrett's got a few outfits for it."

Barrett, Borg's 2-year-old son, assimilated that fact and flashed a big smile while wearing a jean jacket, a red and white beaded necklace, and shorts made with Jason-mask printed fabric.

However you choose to celebrate Halloween tomorrow, make it fang-tastic, Kootenai County. 

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