Just over a month ago, Heritage Museums & Gardens and the STEM/SHS PTSA hosted the Sandwich Halloween Festival after a forced hiatus the prior year because of COVID. It was so gratifying to see the community embrace this event once again.
Families, friends, and neighbors reconnected while strolling the festively decorated grounds and participated in a wide range of Halloween-themed activities (games, face painting, cake walk, fortune teller, haunted maze, scavenger hunt, carousel rides, fireside storytelling, a dance party, photo ops made possible through the generosity of local company Elevated Impressions, and more).
The Halloween Festival partnership between Heritage Museums & Gardens and the STEM/SHS PTSA, now in its fifth year, is significant in so many ways. Together, we have survived hurricanes and a pandemic and shared equitably in the risks and rewards of holding a predominantly outdoor event in New England in late October.
First, this partnership reimagines Halloween events each organization held separately in the past, including the beloved Halloween event each former kindergarten to 8th grade neighborhood school held every year, and the event Heritage held for over a decade. Combining our efforts has enabled us broaden our impact by offering activities serving a wide range of ages.
Second, the overwhelming support from the community this year raised enough funds to enable the PTSA to award three $1,000 scholarships to graduating seniors and will allow for the continued funding of student socials, teacher grants, teacher appreciation, and parent guest speakers. Additionally, the community’s support generated over $7,500 for the Junior and Senior classes and for Sandwich Soul, the SHS award-winning show choir. This is especially important and timely as these student organizations have not been able to fundraise for nearly two years, and this money will help subsidize prom, Senior week, graduation activities, and the choir’s upcoming competition trip. Proceeds also help to support Heritage Museums & Gardens, a vital cultural organization in our community.
Third, the Halloween Festival showcases our amazing Sandwich High School students, without whom this event could not take place because they serve as our volunteer corps running many of the activities. These students are kind, engaged, hardworking, and fun to be around. Nearly 80 students volunteered on each of the two nights from the Junior and Senior classes, along with the members of Sandwich Soul, and several adults associated with the school organizations and with Heritage.
Lastly, it brings the entire community together at one of our most beautiful locations in town. Heritage is proud to host this event, which introduces many families to this community resource for the first time. Shared memories are created, uniting us long after the event is over.
We are beyond grateful to everyone who attended and everyone who volunteered. The saying “it takes a village” is so true... because when we unite and come together as a community to support each other, magic happens, and we all shine brightly.
Heritage Museums & Gardens
The STEM/SHS PTSA