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Beware Of Grisly Growlers

Toilet paper in the trees. Shaving cream on the windows. Apple-strawberry granola bars substituted for Snickers as a healthier choice.

As if those aren’t enough to scare kids at Halloween, the American Veterinary Medical Association (AVMA) advised parents yesterday (Oct. 9, 2008) to worry about the potential for dogs biting their youngsters.

White ghosts, green goblins, and stacked jack-o-lanterns decorate an East High Street, Sanatoga, lawn east of North Pleasantview Road.

White ghosts, green goblins, and stacked jack-o-lanterns decorate an East High Street, Sanatoga, lawn east of North Pleasantview Road.

Some dogs understand that costumes and excited children are part of the spooky holiday fun, the AVMA said, but it cautioned that many dogs fear common Halloween activities. Some will bark in alarm or show signs of aggression, and a fearful dog may be a biting dog, the veterinarians warned.

Owners of dogs who may be “apprehensive in these situations … need to be sensitive to that, and make preparations before Halloween to keep all the little neighborhood ghosts and goblins safe,” said AVMA President Dr. James O. Cook. Parents also should accompany kids to the doors of homes while they trick-or-treat, so they can offer protection if needed.

Looking for safe ways to observe Halloween in and around Sanatoga? Try these:

Sunday, Oct. 19

The Pottsgrove High School Falcons’ Marching Band is scheduled to perform Oct. 19 in Stowe, West Pottsgrove (PA) Township, as it kicks off the Halloween season earlier than most, with a parade.

Friday, Oct. 24

“Mummy Mania” is the theme for the 18th annual Halloween Safehouse at the Pottstown YMCA, 724 N. Adams St., Pottstown PA, to be held Friday from 6-8 p.m. The safehouse provides a secure trick-or-treat environment for children age 12 and younger and their families. Admission per person is just a can of food, which the Y collects to serve area families in need. Area businesses and civic groups help sponsor the event. New to the safehouse this year is a Mummy-Making Contest, in which the “best dressed” mummy wins prizes; contest entries are due by Oct. 15. For more information on the safehouse or its sponsorship, call Jane Alan at the Y, 610-323-7300 Ext. 10, or e-mail her.

Saturday, Oct. 25

A costume party, music, dancing, contests, prizes for best-dressed participants and more are included in the Halloween Ball at Sunnybrook Ballroom on Saturday beginning at 7 p.m. in the ballroom, 50 Sunnybrook Road, Sanatoga. Advance tickets are available online at $20 from Sunnybrook’s website; tickets at the door cost $22.

Coventry Mall, Route 724 at Route 100, Pottstown PA, will host a pumpkin-decorating contest on Saturday at 10 a.m. in its Food Court. Call 610-327-0700 for information. Pumpkins will be provided by The Farmer’s Daughter Farm Market of Spring City.

Sunday, Oct. 26

Hay rides, a children’s concert, a costume contest and more are part of Lower Pottsgrove (PA) Township‘s annual Halloween Festival, to be held Sunday beginning at 1 p.m. in Sanatoga Park, South Sanatoga Road, Sanatoga. Attendance is free. Children participating in the costume contest must pre-register at the park on Sunday afternoon. The township Parks and Recreation Board sponsors the event. See photos from previous festivals here.

Register no later than Sunday for Pottstown Memorial Medical Center’s (PMMC) Halloween Candy Exchange, co-sponsored by Boscov’s Department Stores. The candy exchange is intended for children with diabetes, who can go trick-or-treating with their families and then later exchange what is unedible (to them) for a gift certificate redeemable at Boscov’s in Coventry Mall, North Coventry (PA) Township. Registration forms are available through school nurses (including Lower Pottsgrove Elementary School in Sanatoga), at the Boscov’s Customer Service Department in Coventry Mall, or by calling PMMC’s Community Education office at 610-327-7662. The candy exchange itself is schedule for Nov. 1-7 at Boscov’s, Coventry Mall.

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