"We had a great turn out this year," said Jackie Shelton, a board member of Northern Nevada Center for Independent Living (NNCIL), the organization that hosted this year's Pumpkin Palooza. "About 5,000 people showed up. It was fantastic."
Families lined up during the event to play old-style carnival games. Games included Tip-A-Troll, where players throw bean bags in attempt to knock down troll dolls and a game where kids could launch rubber chickens into tin buckets. Winners of the games were able to redeem their prize tickets for stuffed minions from "Despicable Me" and Domo-kun monsters.
The fun continued with multiple contests- participants wrapped each other up in toilet paper for the mummy wrapping competition. Kids raced against each other, trying to eat a whole pumpkin pie the quickest. In the pumpkin seed spitting contest, the audience dodged flying seeds covered in saliva.
In addition to the games and contests, there a fortune teller, predicting futures, food vendors selling traditional autumn fare, like candy apples and story tellers.
Forrest Pelseie, a volunteer with Grassroots Books, read scary stories to listeners in the Glendale Schoolhouse. She read "the Teacher from the Black Lagoon," keeping with the schoolhouse theme. Grassroots Books also handed out books for free.
"One of Grassroots' big philosophy is to promote literacy," said Pelseis. "Books aren't a luxury- they're for everyone.
There was also a costume booth, selling different hats- some made of fabric and looked like animal ears, others covered in feathers and glittery sequins. For those wanting to dress up as pirates, the booth also sold patches and hooks to place over one's hand.
"We have been so lucky this year with volunteers," said Shelton. "The sororities and fraternities from UNR approached us and wanted to help. We actually have more volunteers than we can use this time around."
"There has been a lot of people, a lot of cute kids," said Nick Mazzoni, a member of UNR's Alpha Tau Omega fraternity as he handed out game tickets. "Halloween is a great time. My fraternity is trick-or-treating for canned goods this year and we're pretty excited about it."
All of the money raised on Sunday was donated to the NNCIL, an organization that helps those with disabilities live more self-sufficiently.
For more information about the Northern Nevada Center for Independent Living, visit www.nncil.org.