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A monster mash for sons and their mummies

More than 100 gather for Halloween-themed dance

POSTED: October 28, 2008 5:00 a.m.
TOM REED/The Times

Lee Ann Pittman and her son Brady walk across the floor of the Gainesville Civic Center during the Mother and Son Spooktacular Dance Thursday evening.

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It’s not every day that friendly witches and Superman gather around the dinner table to share a meal of macaroni and cheese, chicken tenders, and peanut butter and chocolate pie.

But amazingly enough, it happened at the Gainesville Civic Center on Thursday.

More than 100 mothers and sons gathered at the civic center Thursday for a Halloween-themed mother and son dinner dance.

"We have a mother-son dance every year," said Candis Stephens, Gainesville Civic Center events manager.

"This is the first time that we had a Halloween-themed party. We thought it would be fun and that the boys would enjoy dressing up."

The event was sponsored by the Gainesville Parks and Recreation Department.

In addition to dinner and the dance, attendees also were able to take keepsake photos in front of an autumn background.

Mary Grimsley, who escorted her sons, 6-year-old Trey — who was dressed as Col. Rex from Star Wars — and 4-year-old Henry — who was the Blue Power Ranger — said the dances have become a family tradition.

"Trey and I have been coming to the dance for the past several years, and we always have a good time," Grimsley said. "It has
become our date night every year and now Henry is old enough to join in, so it’s our little boys night out."

Looking around the room decorated with carved pumpkins, orange and black balloons and cobwebs, it was hard to decipher who enjoyed dressing up more — the boys or their mothers.

There were geishas coupled with ninjas, a referee and mini football players and even Tinkerbell and Captain Hook.

Six-year-old Darius Young — who was dressed as a crossing guard and escorted by his mom Chalvia Hunter, the traffic signal — said he was excited about the dance, but was looking forward to something else even more.

"It’s only six days left until Halloween," Darius said. "And I can’t wait."


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