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Donations being accepted for Halloween Costume Swap

By: Andy Kozlowski | Madison - Park News | Published September 27, 2019

MADISON HEIGHTS — Have any gently used Halloween costumes that you no longer need? Or maybe you want to find a new costume for your child, and at no cost?

The Madison Heights Environmental Citizens Committee, or ECC, is hosting a Halloween Costume Swap from 1 to 5 p.m. on Sunday, Oct. 13, at the Madison Heights Public Library, located at 240 W. 13 Mile Road in Madison Heights.

Donations of gently used Halloween costumes and accessories — including pet costumes — are being accepted at the library and various schools during the week of Oct. 7-11. Accessories and pieces should be placed in sealed bags. All sizes of costumes are being accepted.

The schools include Edmonson Elementary, 621 E. Katherine Ave.; Hiller Elementary, 400 E. La Salle Ave.; Lessenger Elementary, 30150 N. Campbell Road; Simonds Elementary, 30000 Rose St.; and Madison Elementary, 27107 Hales St.

On Saturday, Oct. 12, volunteers are needed at the library to help sort and arrange the items from 3 to 5 p.m. Volunteers are also needed during the event itself, from 1 to 5 p.m. Oct. 13, to help the families choose costumes. The costumes are free, and there is no cost to attend the event.

“We will not be policing who takes what, but we ask that families only take costumes for members that are in need,” said Roslyn Grafstein, a member of the Madison Heights City Council and the council rep for the ECC.  

Previously, the ECC had hosted a plant exchange at the Pre-Fourth of July Festival in the Park at Civic Center Park, where residents could bring individually wrapped and labeled plants with basic instructions on their care, as well as gardening paraphernalia they no longer needed, and trade them or give them away.

While a costume swap may not seem like an environmental initiative, Grafstein said it benefits the Earth by encouraging people to reuse and recycle their costumes.

“Each year, children grow, so costumes are generally only worn once — maybe twice,” Grafstein said. “Instead of throwing out old costumes, families can drop them off during the week and then come by Sunday to see if there is something new for this year. This is a fun, frugal way to get people out and meeting each other. Its success will depend on the number of people who participate by donating costumes and taking new ones. It will also depend on volunteers who help collect, sort and hand out. But there is virtually no cost to the city for us to host this event.”

Kelly Sipes, a parent at Lessenger Elementary, has three children and several unneeded costumes they will make available for donation. Her children are fans of “Star Wars” and superheroes, so she expects to donate costumes of such characters as Darth Maul, Yoda and Spider-Man.

“I think the Halloween costume exchange is a great way to help one another,” Sipes said. “We all want our children to enjoy the holidays, but purchasing a new costume each year might not fit into everyone’s budget, especially if they have more than one child. I would wager that most of us have at least one costume in a closet somewhere, so why not give other children in our community the opportunity to enjoy it? At the same time that we are helping our community, this event is a way to remind everyone how simple it is to reuse and recycle on a daily basis.”