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Berlin, Ocean Pines News Worcester County Bayside Gazette Logo Berlin, Ocean Pines News Worcester County Bayside Gazette


Berlin place to be for trick-or-treating, Sat.

If anything worth doing is worth overdoing, Berlin is overdoing it right.
As the only northern Worcester municipality to make it practical or even encourage trick-or-treaters, Berlin has been drawing thousands from Ocean Pines, the resort and even as far as Salisbury for years.
Residents and business owners have, at worst, taken it in stride and, at best, have highlighted some of the most creative, most elaborate and good-natured Halloween displays on the shore.
Dozens of houses and Main Street businesses will get into the spirit of Halloween by decorating, and in some cases over-decorating, elaborate displays using their homes or shops as a macabre canvas.
For example, Burbage Funeral Home at 108 William Street will once again be decked out as a haunted house and is a necessary stop during Halloween in Berlin.
Ocean City’s lack of a central residential core makes trick-or-treating a matter of driving from one neighborhood to the next and Ocean Pines has never allowed trick-or-treating because of the lack of streetlights more than anything else.
Other area small towns and villages don’t reach the critical mass required to become a holiday destination, so Berlin took the Halloween crown and ran with it.
“Due to the popularity of some of our more recent events, we may have as many as 1,000 children trick-or-treating this year,” Ivy Wells, economic and development director for the town, said.
To put that in perspective, it’s almost one-quarter of the town’s population.
Parts of Washington Street will be closed between 5 p.m. and 7 p.m. on Saturday to allow the foot traffic to flow, and while Main Street won’t be closed to cars, it might as well be, as hundreds of families will travel the town in pursuit of candy.
Candy that goes quickly, in many cases. Several homeowners and businesses said they expect to give away thousands of pieces of candy in those two hours. One resident confided she sometimes sent her own children out in costume to collect more to be given to other children. Still others said they had reclaimed candy they didn’t particularly enjoy from their kids’ hauls and used that to keep their houses open for Halloween business.
“If you’re not interested in participating or have run out of candy, make sure your porch light is off, or your house is dark. We’re pushing the message this year to only visit houses with their lights on,” Wells said.
Formally, the town has no involvement in how this holiday has come to be celebrated. Beyond maintaining a police presence to maintain order, a sweet scanning station opening at 6:30 p.m. at Town Hall located on William Street and a few barricades, the holiday largely manages itself.
“Minus the Christmas parade, this is our most intense event,” Police Chief Arnold Downing said. “Every officer we have will be out there, along with support from the state police and Worcester County Sherriff’s Office.”
Downing echoed the two-hour timeframe and reinforced the rule to only approach houses with their lights on.
“It’s a family event, so dress up and have a great time. Don’t cut through yards, make safe crossings, stay in well-lit areas and stay safe,” Downing said.