LUMBERTON — If you frighten easily, stay at home on Thursday night — and don’t answer that knock at the door.
But if Halloween is your kind of holiday, there is plenty in the county, regardless of age, to do and see.
Most towns in the county plan to usher in Halloween near dusk on Thursday.
Trick-or-treat hours for Lumberton, Red Springs, St. Pauls, Fairmont and Rowland are from 6 to 8 p.m. and Maxton’s are from 5 to 8 p.m.
Pembroke’s trick-or-treat hours are from 5:30 to 8 p.m. on Thursday. The town will hold the “Peace in the Park: Giggles and Ghouls” event in the Old Pembroke Town Park at 6 p.m., during which guests can bob for apples, participate in costume and pumpkin-carving contests and receive candy from local businesses.
Those planning to venture out should carry a flashlight, examine treats for signs of tampering or choking hazards and stick to sidewalks and well-lit homes on Halloween night, according to local law enforcement.
Sgt. Shawn Byrd of the Lumberton Police Department said children and adults alike need to be aware of their surroundings while roaming their neighborhoods for candy.
“Be careful when crossing the street,” Byrd said. “Make sure they stay with an adult. Try to stay in an area where they know the community. Stay in a well-lit area.”
Trick-or-treaters can receive candy and goody bags at the Lumberton Police Department on Thursday night.
Residents in the Oaks neighborhood in Lumberton are trying something new to keep trick-or-treaters safe and traffic under control.
Myra Norton, an Oaks resident, said homeowners and the Lumberton Police Department have collaborated on a park-and-walk rule that prohibits parents from driving their children from house to house.
“The neighborhood really didn’t want that,” Norton said. “They go 5 mph with kids going on either side. You can’t get in, you can’t get around.”
Norton said signs will alert parents that The Oaks will be park-and-walk only on Halloween. She said police officers will stand at the entrance to The Oaks on Thursday and guide parents to Oakridge Boulevard and White Oak Drive, where they can park and walk their children around the neighborhood.
“It’s a beautiful place to walk,” Norton said. “We have sidewalks. Use them.”
For those looking for an alternative to traditional trick-or-treating, there are other options around the county.
— Biggs Park Mall will also hold a free Halloween Festival from 6 to 8 p.m. on Thursday. There will be inflatables, candy and a costume contest. For information, call Chelsea Biggs at 910-671-0028.
— Parkview Activity Center will put on its annual Harvest Festival from 4:30 to 6:30 p.m. on Halloween. Children should bring a bag for goodies. For information, call Lori Washington, Brenda Rozier or Alonzo Ladson at 910-671-3873.
— South Robeson Rescue will hold a Haunted Forest and Trail and a Haunted House from 8 to 11 p.m. through Thursday. Admission is $6 a person for one event or $10 a person for both. For information, call 910-535-4090. The Haunted Forest and Trial will be located at 1001 S. Walnut St. in Fairmont. The Haunted House is located on Main Street in Fairmont.
— A Halloween Spook-Tacular Costume Contest will be held on Friday at the Robeson Regional Agricultural Fairgrounds. The Best Costume Contest Pre-Show will begin at 6:30 p.m. and the show begins at 7:30. There will be games, prizes, treats and food. Admission is $10 a person. For information, call 941-704-8572.
— Pentecostal United Holy Church will hold a trunk-or-treat event from 5:30 to 7 p.m. on Thursday. People can come and park their cars and give candy away from their trunks. The church is located at 2300 Gavintown Road in Lumberton. For information, call 910-734-6173.
— New Beginning Church of Lumberton will hold its Joy Night Fall Festival at 5 p.m. on Thursday. Children must be accompanied by a parent. Treats will be given to the children. The church is located at 950 Linkhaw Road.
— Antioch Baptist Church will hold a “Hallelujah Night” from 6 to 8 p.m. on Thursday. The event is for adults and children to dress up as any of God’s creations or as a favorite Bible hero. The church is located at 5089 Old Whiteville Road in Lumberton. For information, call Patty Speights at 910-225-1535.
— Long Branch Baptist Church, at 8878 N.C. 72 East in Lumberton, will host its annual Harvest Festival on Thursday from 6 to 8 p.m. A hot dog supper and trunk-or-treat begins at 6 p.m. Activities throughout the evening will include a bouncer, obstacle course, a hayride and miniature golf.