Can't wait for Halloween to roll around to get your treats and pull a few tricks? Harford County is celebrating early with events throughout for kids and adults alike.
Trick-or-treat in downtown Bel Air to kick off the weekend. Businesses on Main Street will be handing out candy to children 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturday. Also, head over to Tiddlywinks, 17 N. Main St., to decorate trick-or-treating bags for free.
The Festival at Bel Air shopping center, on Route 24 at Bel Air South Parkway, will hold its 23rd annual Halloween Costume Parade and Contest at 11 a.m. Saturday. Best of all, it's free to participate.
It all starts at 10:30, when children will line up in the parking lot in front of Chuck E. Cheese's, according to the event's press release. Kids who come in costume and march in the parade will also receive candy and trick-or-treat bags.
Dave Hovel from WXCY-FM will judge the costumes, and those wearing the winning garb will receive cash prizes. There will also be live music and a raffle in which someone will win a "special cash prize," according to the release.
Children can go trick-or-treating throughout the shopping center until 2 p.m.
Halloween's not only a time to gather as much candy as possible or scare your friends, but from 7 to 11 p.m. Friday, people can also help Harford's youth.
The Reckord Armory, 41 N. Main St., will host a Halloween Bull Roast Fundraiser. Tickets are $50 per person and include food, beer and wine. Proceeds from the event will go to the Albert P. Close Foundation, which supports youth programs in the county. There will also be music, a costume contest and prizes for the best costumes.
For more information or to purchase tickets, contact Carol Frontera, firstname.lastname@example.org or 410-838-2237. People must be 21years or older to attend.
Ghouls will be on parade Sunday.
Havre de Grace's annual Halloween parade sponsored by the Havre de Grace Recreation committee will begin at 6:30 p.m. Sunday, with registration at 6 p.m.
Participants are asked to meet at the corner of Washington Street and Congress Avenue and be dressed in costume.
The parade is open to people of all ages and prizes will be awarded for best costumes.
For more information, contact Karen Green, email@example.com or 410-939-6724.
Before the big parade, check out Fall Fest 2011, sponsored by Good Cause Foundation.
From 3 to 5 p.m. Sunday at Tydings Memorial Park, enjoy live music, a bouncy house, carnival games, face-painting, food, drinks, trick-or-treating and more. The festival is free.
If the event is rained-out, it will be moved to Good Cause, 616 Ontario St.
All trick-or-treating will be on Halloween, Oct. 31 at the following times:
Aberdeen: 5 to 8 p.m.; and
Bel Air: 5 to 8 p.m.
Havre de Grace: 6 to 8 p.m.;
Perryville: 6 to 8 p.m.;
Port Deposit: 5 to 8 p.m., with a party;
Halloween safety tips
The following safety tips come from the Harford County Sheriff's Office:
• Clear yards and sidewalks of anything that may be hard to see in the dark.
• Keep houses well lit, inside and out.
• Report suspicious or criminal activity to law enforcement.
• Ensure costumes are flame-retardant so children are safe around lit objects, such as jack-o'-lanterns and candles.
• Keep costumes short to prevent tripping and falling.
• Look for brightly-colored costumes, attach reflector strips to costumes and bags and have children carry glow sticks and flashlights.
• If a costume involves a fake weapon, make sure it's a flexible material, such as cardboard or foam.
• Older kids should trick-or-treat in groups. Younger kids should be accompanied by a parent or neighbor.
• Review trick-or-treating routes and set a time for when children should return home.
• Remind children not to enter strange houses or cars.
• Remind your children not to eat candy until they are home.
• Check all treats at home, and be wary of anything not factory wrapped or sealed.