Back from the dead: Longwood carnival revives tradition

Published 3:12 pm Wednesday, October 24, 2012

File photo — The Longwood carnival features fun activities for children of all ages.

NATCHEZ — The celebration of ghosts, ghouls and goblins at Longwood is a Natchez tradition organizers hope will be sticking around for future generations.

The Longwood Halloween Carnival was revived in 2007, and carnival co-chair Susan Graning said she believes the carnival is on the path to once again become a longstanding tradition.

“My husband grew up going to the carnival, and we’re trying to bring back a family tradition of having a safe, fun environment to celebrate Halloween with your kids,” Graning said.

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Cara Serio, carnival co-chair, said the Longwood carnival has been part of her family for many years.

“I have an 11-year-old, and his grandmother and my husband all went to the Longwood carnival, so it has been part of our family and part of Natchez’s history for years,” Serio said.

The carnival is important, Serio said, because it allows children to be part of the history of Longwood in a fun, holiday way.

“It’s so very important that we include the children in the history of Longwood, and for them on Halloween, it’s not just a home, they are able to experience it in a different way at the carnival,” Serio said.

The carnival has something for everyone, Serio says.

“We have everyone from great-grandmothers baking for the sweet treat tables to the little ones being pushed around in strollers,” she said. “The whole family can be involved.”

Costumed Spider-Men, princesses, pirates and vampires will have plenty of Halloween fun to get into this year at the carnival.

The carnival will have 16 midway games, including a take on the popular game Angry Birds, as well as a go-fish booth and ghost darts and many others.

If games and prizes are not what your little Batman, Cinderella or Frankenstein has in mind, they can bounce their way to a happy Halloween in an inflatable bounce house.

Carnival goers can handpick a pumpkin at the pumpkin patch and capture their spooky fun at the photo booth.

Cathedral cheerleaders will also be on hand at the carnival for face painting.

Hotdogs, nachos, homemade treats and other food will be available at the concession stand.

The carnival is from 5:30 p.m. until 8:30 p.m. Saturday.

Admission is $5 for adults and $3 for children. Wristbands for the event are $20 and include midway games and the haunted hayride. Carnival goers can also purchase individual tickets for games and additional tickets for the photo booth and pumpkin patch.

Graning said she encourages families to bring their children out to the carnival to create a new family tradition or to keep a tradition alive.

“We want this to be something your kids can do and their kids can do and so on,” Graning said. “We can make it a tradition again.”