This past Friday, the children of Charlottesville swarmed what may be the cutest event of the academic year: Trick-or-Treating on the Lawn.
Kids dressed as hamburgers tumbled across the lush green grass, and moms with ruby red slippers carried around newborn cowardly lions.
Trick-or-Treating on the Lawn is a longstanding University tradition that attracts students, members of the Charlottesville community, faculty and alumni. University groups including CIOs, fraternities and sororities give out candy from Lawn rooms.
Third-year College student Emily Sakowitz was in charge of setting up candy distribution for the First Year Players. She made sure members contributed bags of candy and that they signed up for time slots to give out candy.
"I love seeing the kids and all their adorable costumes,” Sakowitz said. “I love seeing how creative the students get, and I like making kids happy. It reminds me of when I was a kid."
Sakowitz wasn't the only student who felt nostalgic during the pumpkin-infested holiday. Second-year College student Emily Caron came to the Lawn with a group of friends from her sorority dressed as the Dancing Lobsters from Nickelodeon’s “The Amanda Show.”
"We wanted something a lot of people could do," Caron said. "Half our pledge class is dancing lobsters — we figured that it was easy, and it would be fun. Hopefully people our age would get it."
Another group of girls researched costume ideas using social media and dressed up like a popular food trend: Greek yogurt.
"Our friend actually looked on Facebook, and she found Greek yogurt,” second-year College student Sussie Owusu-Ansah said. “And so we dressed up in togas and wrote yogurt on ourselves. Creativity — that's a key thing."
Trick-or-Treating on the Lawn is a cherished tradition for many students.
"I've come every year that I've been here at U.Va.," fourth-year Engineering student Eric Ott said. "I love seeing all of the cool costumes, especially the ones with parents and kids. I saw a mom dressed as a trash can with her little kid dressed as a raccoon, like in a little pouch. It was really cute, so think the cool costumes are what keep me coming back."
Fourth-year College student Caroline Woods dressed up in her turquoise high school prom dress, braided her white blonde hair and donned purple eye makeup to be Disney’s Anna from “Frozen.” Woods said she fulfilled a childhood dream of being a Disney princess, and trick-or-treaters got the chance to meet an adored character.
Trick-or-Treating on the Lawn attracts a diverse crowd. For some, it is the chance to suspend reality and bring cultural characters and creative visions to life. Others come only to gawk at adorable children dressed as bumblebees.
Needless to say, there's something for everyone.
Read this article translated into Chinese here.