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Kids Halloween Costume Drive hailed a huge success

Trick or treating is something of a rite of passage in childhood, an experience that brings joy and excitement and one that provides plenty of opportunity for creating memories that will last a lifetime, but for some local families, laying out the cash necessary to fit out their children for Halloween can be quite difficult. Financial struggles sometimes mean that parents must choose between buying costumes for their kiddos and purchasing other much-needed items or paying important bills.

It’s a situation of which local resident Shauna Dragna said she was very much aware but rather than simply lamenting the fact, she decided to do something about it. Despite having no experience at all in holding a collection drive, she embarked on a mission to make the Halloween holiday just a bit less stressful for local parents, spending weeks organizing and hosting her inaugural Halloween Costumes for Kids Drive.

Whenever venturing into a new endeavor such as this, there is no way of knowing exactly how things will turn out. First-time fundraisers and donation drives are not always a success but for Dragna, that was certainly not the case. She entered into her costume drive without any clear picture of what sort of reaction it would elicit from the community and she was utterly delighted with the ultimate outcome.

“I didn’t really know what to expect,” Dragna told the Pahrump Valley Times. “The results were definitely more than I had imagined! It was a humbling experience. I made a lot of new friends in the community who share my passion to serve and it was such a good feeling to be able to help families that may not have otherwise been able to get costumes without the help of our great little town!”

An estimated 125 costumes were collected throughout the weeks of the costume drive and dozens of those ensembles made their way into the exuberant hands of children who were overjoyed at the knowledge that they would be able to dress up and hit the streets of Pahrump in style this Halloween.

To facilitate the distribution process, Dragna organized a Halloween party for the families who would be receiving free costumes this year and thanks to the generosity of area businesses and organizations, that party was also a big success.

Taking place Saturday, Oct. 23 at XPress Detail and Auto Spa, the Halloween party included much more than just the doling out of costumes, however. There were games and activities as well, along with pizza, pigs in a blanket and other tasty treats for attendees to devour, all compliments of those who contributed to making the event a fantastically fun afternoon for all.

“I enjoyed seeing the kids’ faces when they found a costume they liked and we also gave away a lot of prizes to the kids, as well as the parents,” Dragna told the Pahrump Valley Times, noting that she also reveled in seeing the delighted smiles of the parents when they themselves won a prize. “We gave out gift certificates to JT’s A to Z beauty supply and Natural Vibes to the parents, which was awesome because I don’t think they were expecting to be included.”

With the costume drive now at an end, Dragna is turning her attention to next year, remarking that she does plan to host a second annual Halloween Costumes for Kids Drive in 2022. To help her get a head start on that effort, she will be leaving the donation bins out for about a week post-Halloween, meaning any area families who happen to have costumes following the holiday that they will not be needing next year have the opportunity to donate them, so long as they were gently used, knowing that they will then be given new life as much-loved attire for other children next year. Dragna still had several costumes left and she was continuing her distribution of costumes in the days that followed the Halloween party, with any that remain after the holiday to be packed up and stored for next year’s effort.

Dragna made sure to highlight all of those who helped her in her endeavor, as well as those who showed up to the Halloween party.

“Thanks to everyone who showed up to the Halloween costume event at XPress Detail and Auto Spa,” Dragna stated after all was said and done. “Thank you to all of the following local businesses for your support and donations: XPress Detail and Auto Spa for providing the location; Robyn Ruggeroli from Fainting Goat Soap by New Liberty Farm for providing trick-or-treat bags for all the kids; Bella Tam for donating gift certificates for her store JT’s A to Z beauty supply; Crystal Atwood for donating gift certificates for her store Natural Vibes; Camel Towing for providing pizza from Big Dick’s Pizzeria; Amy Rose from Sweet Treats and Health Eats by Amy for all the baked goods; Tiffany WhiteCloud and Anthony Greco from 97.7 FM for music and public announcements; all the amazing folks from BACA, (Bikers Against Child Abuse) for passing out tattoos and stickers and for their help setting up, clearing up and passing out costumes; No to Abuse for loaning us tables; Denise Gholson the Gypsy Queen; Carol Smith for passing out costumes and helping; Shaina Patterson for donating her awesome crafty jar for the candy corn guessing game; Robin Hebrock from the PV Times for coverage; Sheryl Spargur for donating pop-its for the kids and Halloween decorations; and most importantly, all of you great residents of Pahrump who stepped up and donated a whopping 125 costumes to our local kids in need!”

Anyone willing to donate their gently used or new costumes after Halloween is over can do so by dropping them off at the donation bins located at XPress Detail and Auto Spa, 980 Pahrump Valley Blvd., just south of the roundabout; JT’s A to Z Beauty Supply, 171 S. Frontage Road, in the green building across from Walmart; and at Walmart itself, where there is a donation box set up near the Red Box machines.

Contact reporter Robin Hebrock at rhebrock@pvtimes.com

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