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Trick-or-treaters watched over by Halloween-night Pumpkin Patrol

On Oct. 31, you would be forgiven for thinking the red vans on Vaughan streets mean a massive meltdown at Rogers Cable.

Fret not. Your cable is safe. Mischief-makers, on the other hand, had better watch out.

The vans will be out in force as part of the 23rd annual Rogers Pumpkin Patrol, a program designed to help keep little boils and ghouls safe as they travel from door-to-door threatening tricks, if they don’t get treats on Halloween night.

“If somebody’s lost, if there is somebody that’s frightened, we call police for escort,” says Tina Murphy, community relations manager at Rogers. “We’re a deterrent for anybody looking to cause problems and we work in cooperation with the local police department.”

Dozens of the familiar red Rogers vans, easily recognizable by the Pumpkin Patrol magnets affixed to their sides, will traverse Vaughan’s roads from 5:30 to 8:30 p.m. with two volunteer staff members inside ready to help.

“It’s all volunteers,” Murphy says. “Nobody’s paid for this whatsoever.”

Rogers has teamed with York police and the region’s school boards to help spread the word about Halloween safety to both parents and kids.

“The two weeks before Halloween, we go out and we do Halloween safety presentations to the grade 2s and 3s,” she says. “We’ve distributed loot bags … and the children in the Vaughan schools have all received their reflective armbands.”

Vaughan Today
In print: Friday, October 26, 2007
Page: 6
Byline: Philip Alves