by ANASTASIA HAN
Sweaty hands in gloves were set to make 840 hot dogs from 3:30pm to 5:00pm inside Artesia Park’s kitchen on Halloween. The trains of aluminum foil never ceased to end until the enormous plastic bags of buns were empty. Mountains of steaming sausages piled onto large, deep, silver trays and were placed into hot dog buns through an assembly line by volunteers, the Artesia Lions International volunteers (LEOS).
Discussions about college, future goals, and scary movies broke the noise of the crinkling of foil, the consistent mellow thumps of packaged hot dogs beginning to create an Eiffel Tower of meat and bread.
After assembling the hot dogs, they were carried outside to a booth to provide the hot dogs to the families attending the annual Trunk or Treat event at Artesia Park. Kool Aid and hot dogs were freely given to the children and parents that arrived to the booth to enjoy their Halloween evening with food, music, and fun activities. Other volunteers assisted in setting up the haunted house with spooky decorations and flashing lighting to create a dizzying effect in the dark.
To decorate the park, the volunteers took several colorful balloons from the office and hung them on trees, lampposts, benches, and more.
“I was glad that I was able to volunteer at the Artesia Park Halloween Event because it helped me see the city’s effort to serve the community,” Junior Daniel Mapa said.
Many adult workers were present from the community and set up many tables for each station. All the volunteers were ready to cooperate and make it a memorable Halloween night for children and their parents. As the event began to start at around six, families began to pile in with their superhero, animals, and princess children. Children approached tables and car trunks with smiling faces, and they shyly and some excitedly stepped up to get their candy. Parents came to get hot dogs for their children and drinks to cater to their children for them to have a fun time. As the night sky began to darken with the chilly wind blowing throughout the park, families and volunteers were spreading warmth through energetic greetings and selfless giving to fill the trick or treat bags and hearts.