Friday, October 20, 2023

Windham’s ‘Trunk or Treat’ promises to be an event full of spooky fun

By Masha Yurkevich

For those who love Halloween, it’s the most wonderful time of the year for fear and if you haven’t already selected a costume, time is growing short as Windham’s annual Halloween extravaganza known as “Trunk or Treat” is approaching.

Windham Parks and Recreation will be hosting its annual
'Trunk or Treat' event for kids from 5:30 to 8 p.m. Saturday,
Oct. 28 behind the Windham Mall in North Windham.
Registration is required for participants at 
North Windham. Registration is required for participants at
Windham’s Parks and Recreation Department will once again be hosting the spooky and social event behind the Windham Mall from 5:30 to 8 p.m. Saturday, Oct. 28 and it promises to be an evening filled with fun, treats, and spooky beats.

Trunk or Treat has become a popular event nationwide, either as an alternative to or in addition to conventional trick-or-treating to neighborhood homes. For those who choose to host a trunk, they decorate and serve candy out of the trunk of their vehicles.

For the businesses and community organizations that participate, it is a way to spotlight their mission and give back to their communities. For individual families, it is often their way to give candy to trunk-or-treaters who might not otherwise visit them if their homes are in a rural setting, or they just want to have fun.

In Windham, trunk participants are judged for creativity, originality, and effort, and it is amazing to see what some of the trunks end up looking like.

“The department had been hosting Windham’s Halloween Adventure for a number of years at Manchester School for children in third grade and below,” says Linda Brooks, Director of Windham Parks and Recreation. “In 2016, in an effort to expand upon this event, we moved it to the Windham Middle School, opened it to grades 8 and under and in addition to the Trunk or Treat, added a haunted house, games, refreshments and a Costume Contest.”

In 2016 there were 10 trunks and by 2019 the number had grown to 24 trunks with an estimated 700 children in attendance, so the Parks and Recreation staff knew that they had outgrown the Middle School and the format for the event. With the arrival of COVID-19 in 2020, Parks and Recreation was forced to modify the event to be a Drive-Thru Trunk or Treat at the Windham Mall. By 2022’s Trunk or Treat, the number of trunk hosts had grown to 32.

“Our event is always held the Saturday evening before Halloween so that it doesn’t interfere with anyone wishing to go Trick-or-Treating in their neighborhoods,” says Brooks.

While the event is free, people do need to register in advance, both to host a trunk or to attend as a participant. Registration can be done by visiting or in person at the Parks and Recreation Department at Windham Town Hall. Registration for Trunk Hosts ends Wednesday, Oct. 25 and children and families must pre-register for a specific time frame to visit the Trunk or Treat event through Thursday, Oct. 26.

Brooks said the event will be held in Windham but is open to residents outside of Windham, as long as they register in advance.

“This year we will return to a walk-thru event which allows more direct contact by both the participants and the trunk hosts,” says Brooks. “If the weather is poor, the event will move indoors at the Windham Mall. This is a wonderful community event that brings so many different groups together to celebrate Halloween in a safe way. The event is co-sponsored by the Sebago Lakes Chamber of Commerce and Smitty’s Cinema, and we will have entertainment provided by the Maine Dance Center.”

According to Brooks, among the comments received from one of the 2022 trunk hosts when asked what they like about the event, they replied, “The kids and how happy they were plus the comradery amongst the trunk hosts. Music's playing, everyone singing along. So much fun!”

Although attendance is free, participants are encouraged to bring a non-perishable food item to Trunk or Treat or to make a monetary donation to the Windham Food Pantry.

For event registration to host a trunk or to attend the event as a participant, go to <

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