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Tricks & Treats at Safe & Green Halloween

Authors: Emilee Bickert and Taylor Hatfield

The Fall season is a magical time for youth in the community and one of its highlights is our annual community festival. The arrival of playful and scary costumes and tricks and treats awakened the Halloween spirit in everyone. On October 20th at McKinley Elementary School, we had the first perfect Fall day. Cooler temperatures, crunchy leaves, and a light breeze carried the mouthwatering smell of popcorn all over the campus!

Let the festivities begin! SJSU student learners create an outside bowling alley.

For the past ten years, this CommUniverCity San José event has been inspiring children and their families to learn about environmental sustainability, healthy lifestyles, and Halloween safety. This year was no exception! The event welcomed all families in the community from McKinley Elementary School and Olinder Elementary School to enjoy the Halloween fun. Children participated in events such as an upcycled costume contest, face painting, bicycle raffle, pumpkin decorating, and educational games revolving around health, the environment, and safety. Other fun attractions included a fire truck, police car, and fun DJ booth.  We enjoyed seeing the kids’eyes light up when they got to play in the recycling truck.

A CommUniverCity volunteer assisting a student with his freshly decorated pumpkin.
Costume contest participants with District 3 Councilmember Raul Peralez and Q, the San Jose Earthquake’s mascot
One of our volunteers giving firefighting a try!
Residents liked checking out the San Jose police car!















In the weeks leading up to the big event, San José State students worked together in conjunction with the kid’s imaginations at the after-school programs at Olinder and McKinley to concoct unique costumes made from post-consumer materials. After weeks of costume alterations and fittings, the final designs were completed. The anticipation of the costume competition results created a whirlwind of excitement among family and friends on the day of the fair. Spectators ooh-ed and aw-ed during the parade and the competition was fierce. All of this year’s participants did an amazing job. Check out this year’s winners below!

Winners of the Safe and Green Halloween costume contest.

None of the fun would have been possible without the funding we received from Open Space Authority and the collaboration of over 65  community organizations and dozens of active community members. Our warmest appreciation goes out to all 144 San José State University student volunteers, supporters, and the City of San José.

Special thanks to:

Andy Feinstein, SJSU Provost

District 3 Councilmember Raul Peralez, answering a girl’s request for a hug

Q, the Earthquake’s mascot

Thank you to our volunteers!


Funded by:

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