Halloween Fun: Community Center gives back

Staff photo by Grace Pecci Nashua Firefighters Association IAFF Local 789 members were distributing coats at the Arlington Community Center’s Halloween party to children in need on behalf of Operation Warm, an organization with a mission to provide warmth, confidence and hope to children in need across North America through the gift of brand new coats.

NASHUA – Families and community members gathered for a fun-filled afternoon at the Arlington Community Center’s Halloween Party on Saturday.

The event, which was free to the public, kicked off at 11 a.m. and lasted until 3 p.m. The activities offered were booming, from decorating trick-or-treat bags to getting a face-painting, to dancing along with the young women from Discover Dance of Nashua ,to playing different games, families were guaranteed to stay entertained.

When families needed a break from all the hustle and bustle, they could munch on a variety of different foods that were donated, including pizza, cake, fruits, chips and not to mention, tons and tons of Halloween candy.

Winter coats were also given out to children in need, thanks to Nashua Firefighters Association IAFF Local 789.

President of the Nashua Fire Fighters Union John McAllister said this is their fifth year distributing coats to children in need in Nashua. In the past, McAllister said they go through the schools, along with the Boys & Girls Club and get a list of children in need of coats. IAFF Local 789 also does a fundraiser every year for Operation Warm.

Staff photo by Grace Pecci On Saturday families and members of the Nashua community gathered for a Halloween party put on by the Arlington Community Center. Families could get involved in a multitude of fun activities.

At the event, McAllister said they were steadily giving the coats away.

“We respond to emergencies, and we like to take care of the the people in our city,” McAllister said.

This desire to help out others in the community is something Gloria Timmons, who works to fundraise for the Arlington Community Center, said is what this event is founded on.

“It brings a sense of togetherness, joy and peace,” Timmons said. “The people here, they love kids.”

Dr. Norman W. Crisp School Principal Cherrie Fulton agreed.

“It brings us together in a happy moment. It’s people helping people which is so important,” Fulton said. In terms of Nashua itself, Fulton said, “I can’t say enough good things about Nashua. There are so many opportunities available.”

The event also was a good way to give the attendees a chance to learn about the Arlington Community Center’s programs and resources. The mission of the center is to develop links between schools, parents, business leaders and the community at large, through a community space where services are available to assist with the needs of every student and family. The Arlington Community Center was officially opened on Oct. 28, 2017, after Nashua Mayor Jim Donchess accepted the My Brother’s Keeper Community challenge, which is a national call to action “to build and execute robust plans to ensure that all young people – no matter who they are, where they come from, or the circumstances into which they are born – can achieve their full potential.”

This was the Arlington Community Center’s second Halloween party.

Grace Pecci can be reached at 594-1243 or gpecci@nashuatelegraph.com.