Pirate boo-ty and other fun at Freaky Friday

Wendy SmithFarragut, The Farragut Insider

This week, an army of superheroes, princesses and Harry Potters will return to Mayor Bob Leonard Park for Freaky Friday Fright Nite. The Town of Farragut Parks & Rec staff can’t wait.

“Last year’s Freaky Friday Drive-Thru Boo was really fun because we were just happy to be putting on an event,” says Brittany Spencer, special event and program coordinator. “But we couldn’t have as many vendors and had to limit participation, so we’re super excited to host our traditional event at the park this year.”

Vendors are also glad that Freaky Friday has returned to its usual venue. Many vendors, like Vulcan Materials, have the same spot every year. Vulcan also has the same theme every year – pirates. They pass out plastic footballs imprinted with the company logo as well as treat bags, so kids anticipate visiting the tent each year, says Rose Moffett, EMS coordinator and community relations manager for the East Tennessee office.

“We really can’t wait to be back in person,” she says.

The Vulcan tent is normally staffed by up to eight employees, but due to the pandemic, only four will attend this year. But they’ll be wearing their traditional pirate costumes and bringing their talking pirate skeleton. The footballs will be a little different this year. Because of limited inventory, the company opted for purple footballs with orange print.

“It’s a Halloween theme,” she says.

Rose says the group typically brings 1,500 to 2,000 goody bags stuffed by Rose’s church’s youth group. The Vulcan reps were taken aback by the crowds the first year.

“It was like the floodgates opened! We didn’t know what to expect.”

Speaking of floodgates, wet weather dampened the event in 2018 and 2019. But that didn’t matter to the kids, and it doesn’t matter to the Vulcan crew, either.

“It makes no difference,” Rose says. “The kids have so much fun.”

Vulcan Materials Company is the nation’s largest producer of construction aggregates – primarily crushed stone, sand and gravel. The company’s culture revolves around its staff, and community outreach is also important. Open houses have been hosted at the Everett Road quarry and school groups often tour. The employees really like interacting with the community, she says.

“This just puts a smile on our faces!”

The 25th annual Freaky Friday Fright Nite is 5-7 p.m. Friday, Oct. 29, at Mayor Bob Leonard Park, 301 Watt Road. Children ages 12 and under are invited to “trick or treat” on the walk trail while local businesses, community groups and town of Farragut volunteers hand out treats and provide games with prizes and cookie decorating. New this year: Kona Ice and the Hot Dog Hut will be on location with snacks for purchase.

The event is free, but attendees are asked to bring donations for Ronald McDonald House Charities of Knoxville. For a list of suggested donations, visit farragutparksandrec.org/freakyfriday.

Town of Farragut marketing and public relations coordinator Wendy Smith is your reliable Farragut insider.

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