When kids think Halloween, they think candy. And of course, they need a way to carry lots of candy during their trick-or-treating adventures. For youngsters in Lyons, Kansas, that’s where Woydziak Hardware steps in to help.
In the weeks preceding Halloween, owners Jason and Danica Huddleston set up a big table in their store, line up buckets emblazoned with their co-op’s logo and pull out kid-sized paints and brushes. Then, they invite all the children in the area who would like to decorate a bucket in preparation for their candy gathering.
“We let them design the buckets any way they want to,” Danica says. “We get the local newspaper to take a picture and have judges pick the best buckets.” The stakes for prizes are high—one year, she says, the prize was a remote-controlled helicopter.
“The bucket-decorating contest is just one way we can get the kids in here doing something fun,” she says. “We’ve found that kids love building their own creations.”
But the story doesn’t end after the last child is out the door with their decorated bucket. On Halloween night, Woydziak Hardware participates in a communitywide trick-or-treat event on a nature trail in a city park. At different points along the trail, local businesses set up areas where kids can come to pick up candy.
“We’re always the last stop on the trail, and we always have the most decorations and spooks,” says Danica. “The kids always love it.”