The Great Bend Zoo Boo drew 2,733 children and 1,532 adults to Brit Spaugh Zoo on Saturday, Zoo Director Scott Gregory reported.
"Zoo Boo set records as the largest ever!" Gregory said. "Everything ran smooth and we’re all very pleased. This year we set the path to walk around the whole zoo, instead of part of the zoo. Over $5,000 was spent on candy, and we have very little left."
"It was a lot of fun," said Wendy Beck, Great Bend Tribune advertising director. The Tribune operated one of the 25 booths that handed out candy to children. Beck said she gave away 4,500 goodies.
Saturday’s downtown activities also included the Halloween Parade and Sunflower Diversified Services’ first Charity Chili Cook-off. People who gave away treats along Main Street reported higher-than-average attendance at the parade.
Sarah Krom at Sunflower said the chili cook-off raised $330 for the Community Food Bank. The panel of media judges – Chuck Smith from the Great Bend Tribune, Scott Donovan from Eagle Radio and Mike Hesher from KSN– awarded prizes in two categories. The winner in the team division was Great Lakes Airlines, and Sue Bentley won in the individual category. The People’s Choice award went to Prodigal Ministries.
People could also vote at the Barton County Courthouse Saturday and election officials report 235 people took advantage of this. As of Monday afternoon, 2,253 advance ballots had been cast.
A lot of work went into all of these events. As for the Zoo Boo, Gregory said plans are already being made to top this year’s event in 2011.
"We would like to thank all of our sponsors, as well as our new vendor booths, Rick Nolton, Mark Breches, Susie Guenther, Steve Root, Brad Maddox, Marge Bowen and Walmart," he said. "Special thanks to the City of Great Bend departments and zoo staff and, last but not least, the community of Great Bend and surrounding areas who came together, to help this event become the biggest success in the Great Bend-Brit Spaugh Zoo history."