Local children visit USC for safe trick-or-treating

USC organizations held trick-or-treating events Monday to provide families in the surrounding community with a safe environment to celebrate Halloween.

Spooky · More than 1,500 children and parents from the community participated in USC Safe Halloween at the Hoover Recreation Center. - Ani Kolangian | Daily Trojan

According to a LivingSocial survey this week, one in five parents said their city is not safe for trick-or-treating and nearly two-thirds of parents said they check their kids’ candy for tampering.

A variety of organizations affiliated with the university host Halloween events each year to ease this concern in the surrounding community. USC organizations hold events for local children to trick-or-treat in a safe, controlled environment.

Each year, sororities and fraternities on The Row pass out candy to children in the surrounding community. Kappa Alpha Theta sorority President Emily Barth said about 12 of her sisters passed out candy to children Monday.

“We hope to contribute to the community so kids can have a safe environment to participate in Halloween,” Barth said. “We want to make sure that they see The Row as a safe place and want to support them, so the community feels comfortable with the Greek community at USC and we can establish further relations with them.”

Several groups also joined the University Residential Student Community to help put on the Halloween carnival “Spirits at Troy” in McCarthy Quad on Monday.

USC Interaxon, the Marshall Women’s Leadership Board, Mortar Board honor society, USC Circle K and representatives from the Panhellenic Council helped run programs at the event.

The Dept. of Public Safety, which had officers monitoring the safety of the event, also passed out candy.

URSC Community Outreach Coordinator Lindsey Estes said the carnival’s location and regular occurance reassure parents of its safety.

“It’s in an enclosed environment, so parents know it’s controlled,” Estes said. “The event has also been going on for a while, so parents know they can trust us to keep their kids safe.”

URSC advertised the event at elementary schools in the USC family in the weeks before the event and Estes said more than 500 children participated.

“We have so many resources at USC and so many opportunities to give back to our community,” Estes said. “Events like these give students an opportunity to give back to the community, where we are able to provide a safe and fun environment.”

This year’s “Spirits at Troy” featured a haunted house in the Marks Tower lobby, bouncy houses, carnival games and face-painting.

The USC Norman Topping Student Aid Fund also hosted a Halloween event Monday. It collaborated with the City of Los Angeles Department of Recreation and Parks to host more than 1,500 neighborhood children and parents at the USC Safe Halloween celebration at the Hoover Recreation Center.

Topping Scholars helped plan and run Safe Halloween, which included a haunted house, inflatable games, craft booths, costume contests with prizes, a DJ and candy and treats.