BUCKHANNON – Candy, creatures and costumes, oh my!
The West Virginia State Wildlife Center is inviting the community to see their animals at dusk and get some candy along the way. West Virginia Wildlife Center biologist Trevor Moore said they are bringing back Trails, Tails and Treats, an opportunity to trick or treat along the 1.25-mile path at the center. The event will take place from 5-7 p.m. Oct. 29 – the last Saturday of the month – with normal admission rates.
“At 7 p.m. we will stop accepting people, but everyone doesn’t have to be out by 7 p.m.,” Moore said. “The event is just the same as last year, so it’s trick-or-treating around the loop; you get to see all the animals, you get to wear your costumes, and then you get some candy on the way.”
The decorations for the event will remain up for most of October, so those who can’t participate in the event can still see the Halloween-themed wildlife center.
“We tend to try and do a little bit more family-friendly Halloween stuff as opposed to gory, spooky Halloween stuff,” Moore said. “We’re very geared towards families and we’ve reached out to people in the community to help us because we had suggestions on how to make it better.”
The center is working with several groups to gather plenty of candy and make sure enough people are handing out the sweets on the night of the event.
“We got totally swamped last year and that was the first year of doing this event, and we’ve had to change our Halloween event from previous years just because of manpower and liability, and a few other things,” Moore said. “Last year, we had a totally different event that took place over one night for two hours as opposed to the past when it’s been over a couple of weekends, so we had 1,000 people almost in two hours, which totally caught us off guard.”
“This year, we’re more prepared and understand what we’re getting into,” he added.
Moore encouraged everyone to appear in costume and visit the animals who tend to appear livelier in the evening.
“The owls will definitely be active, the coyotes tend to get a bit more worked up, especially when we have lots of people there towards dusk,” Moore said. “A lot of things get really worked up towards dusk and then as night comes, around 7, 8, or 9 p.m., things start to slow down, so hopefully everything is up and active because the heat of the day has passed, they’ve just gotten fed and now there’s an increase of people when normally, people are gone.”
You can find more information about the wildlife center, including directions and admission rates here.