from October 25th issue
By Meg Rowley
On October 20, 2007, ghosts, witches, butterflies, and ninjas were seen all over Siena’s campus. Yes, Halloween came early to Siena. From one o’clock to five o’clock on Saturday, Siena College hosted Halloween Extravaganza for local Albany children. People paid a five dollar entrance fee, and all the money raised at the event went to the Make-a-Wish Foundation.
The hard work began the Friday night before the event. Siena students worked long into the night setting up arts and crafts actives, as well as undertaking the challenge of transforming a part of the Sarazen Student center into a ghoulish haunted house.
From the Siena Dance Team that ran the Goofy Pumpkins table in which children painted and created their very own pumpkins, to the Psychology Club that made ghost lollipops for the children, groups from all over Siena came out to make the event a success.
Not only did clubs, and groups have stations set up, but many Siena students came out just to help and give back to the community. Caitlin McDonnell, a Siena student surrounded by giggling children and arts and craft supplies, said, “I just wanted to volunteer and help out, because this seemed like a really good cause.” McDonnell ran a face mask station.
Stage 3, Siena’s drama, club helped out by having actors and actresses in the haunted house. The haunted house was a big hit, and a huge line waited to enter. To keep from scaring the kids too much, stickers were placed on the foreheads of children that wanted to be “protected from monsters”.
The event was highly anticipated throughout the Albany area. It was advertised in Colonie School and also local radio stations broadcasted the event.
The heart and soul of the entire event was lead by event coordinators Yalitza Marie Negron, and Danita Williams. Negron was very passionate about raising money for the Make-a-Wish foundation. “My goal is to make 10,000 dollars at this event, and I know we can do it,” Negron said with enthusiasm. Negron had a personal reason from wanted to help the cause. “Make-a-Wish really helped my family. My brother was sick, and Make-a-Wish sent us to Disneyland. It was awesome. I want to help make someone else’s dream come true.”
This giving attitude was what made the Halloween Extravaganza possible. The event was student-run, so everyone one that came and helped out did it simply out of the kindness of their heart.
One hundred and fifty children where expected to be at the event, and indeed the halls were filled with kids smiling and filling their trick-or-treat bags with candy. The event had a very personal feeling, with children wearing name-tags, so that Siena students could call them by their first name and really make them feel comfortable. A large amount of children that attended were there due to Big Brothers and Sisters, a mentoring program. Siena students that help out with Big Brothers and Sisters came with their little “sister” or “brother” to the event.
Siena was at its best during the event. Student from the school came together and really made the extravaganza happen. Children seemed to be really enjoying themselves. It was apparent that Siena really gave back to the community and made some children very happy. Like Negron said, hopefully the money raised will help someone else’s dream one true.