The Ashland Trunk or Treat event is a prime example of what happens when you let government take too much control. They’re going to ruin Halloween. And that’s going to piss off a lot of people around Schuylkill County. People take this day VERY seriously, apparently.
On Tuesday, officials with the Ashland Recreation Committee performed trick-or-treat damage control.
They told WNEP that they wanted to “clear up the confusion” about a flyer it had released a day earlier.
It’s this one you’ve likely seen:
Ashland’s Trunk or Treat
Note the line at the bottom. It reads, “NOTE: THIS EVENT REPLACES TOWN-WIDE TRICK OR TREAT.”
A few other outlets jumped to the obvious and correct conclusion. Ashland replaced trick-or-treat night with this thing we’ve never heard of before Monday.
Our buddy at Coalspeaker.com had this take on the news:
SkookNews.com added a note about it by sharing the flyer on Twitter, specifically noting that Trunk or Treat was replacing Trick-or-Treat.
Now, unless everyone in Ashland and everyone here missed the class on what “replaces” means, it’s safe to assume there’d be no more Trick-or-Treat night in Ashland. At least not this year.
Well, we’re all wrong. And apparently, we’re CONFUSED.
Ashland’s Rec Committee cleared the air with Chase Senior on Tuesday. They tell him that yes, there’s a Trunk-or-Treat event at 7th and Centre streets on Halloween night. But also, people are free to go Trick-or-Treating in Ashland, too.
NOW, we’re officially confused.
Ashland officials say you can go Halloweening the old-fashioned way or the new-fashioned way, at Trunk-or-Treat.
Don’t Ruin Halloween
It was August and you already started seeing Halloween candy out in the stores around Schuylkill County. You likely know someone who probably thinks that’s not soon enough. They’re thinking about the next Halloween on November 1.
That’s why these Ashland officials who had the bright idea of REPLACING Trick-or-Treat with Trunk-or-Treat had to gracefully fall on the proverbial sword on Tuesday. There was no confusion on the public’s part.
And kudos to these folks on the Ashland Rec Committee for obviously hearing the outcry and quickly changing course.
Trunk-or-Treat Not a Bad Idea
It’s a relatively new trend, Trunk-or-Treat. No, you don’t get a trunk if you opt out of the treat. Instead, kids out Halloweening visit one central location and get candy from people who’ve decorated the trunks of their cars or vehicles and filled them with candy. It’s a good idea for really rural communities. Kids might have to walk miles just to get a couple Fun Size Snickers bars.
Churches have taken up the idea, too. And again, it’s not the worst idea in the world under the right circumstances.
It’s just that Ashland in 2019 was not the right circumstance.
Trunk-or-Treat surely must be a way to provide a safe and less arduous Halloween night for a lot of residents. Ashland, like a lot of communities north of the mountain (and south of the mountain, too) has its issues with blight and drugs and having kids knocking on the doors of God-knows-who. And Ashland is not the most friendly to people riding the Shoe Leather Express. The main street practically goes straight up and down; it’s so steep.
So, OK, we get it.
But still … the reaction to this decision shows that it’s not reflective of the majority of people in Ashland. Don’t mess with their Halloween.
Don’t Let Them Win
Seriously, when you let drug dealers and criminals pen you in like this, you’re letting them win. You’re letting them dictate where it’s safe to go, or not safe to go. Trick-or-Treat is one night to win back the neighborhood.
It’s the one time a year where it’s possible to get a whole community together, walking around and becoming aware of things in their neighborhoods. Perhaps the lack of things like Trick-or-Treat and other community-driven events are why neighborhoods are slipping away.
But you have to let the people decide. And Ashland residents made a clear statement right away: Don’t ruin Halloween.
And no other towns should think of copying this idea, either.