UC Berkeley press release

NEWS RELEASE, 10/28/96


by Gretchen Kell

WHAT: An afternoon of Halloween trick-or-treating at the University of California at Berkeley for low-income and homeless children. In their largest philanthropic event of the year, all 49 of UC Berkeley's fraternity and sororities houses are busing some 400 disadvantaged youngsters to campus to visit "haunted" Greek houses, bob for apples and collect candy.

WHEN: Thursday, Oct. 31, beginning at 2:30 p.m. The event will last a few hours.

WHERE: At least 10 buses filled with children will arrive on campus at three locations -- by the fountain near the intersection of Bancroft Way and College Avenue.; at Channing Circle near the corner of Piedmont Avenue. and Channing Way; and at the corner of Dwight Way and Prospect Street., at the entrance to the Clark Kerr Campus. From there, small groups of children, teachers and parents will be escorted by fraternity and sorority members to Greek houses for trick-or-treating.

At least two of Cal's chapter houses -- Sigma Phi Epsilon and Alpha Epsilon Pi fraternities -- will be decorated to look haunted. The Delta Delta Delta sorority house will be hosting games for the children. (See map for directions).

WHO: UC Berkeley's Interfraternity Council -- the umbrella organization for 37 fraternities (one fraternity does not have its own house) -- and its College Panhellenic Association, which oversees 13 sororities, are hosting this second annual event. The number of participating children has doubled from last year.

BACKGROUND: With many Bay Area children living in neighborhoods where it is unsafe to trick-or-treat, UC Berkeley's fraternity and sorority members are providing a safe alternative. "Everyone loves Halloween, and kids, so this was an event that was easy to get into," said Chris Shale, president of the campus's Interfraternity Council. "When you see the kids race off the buses to trick-or-treat here, it's impossible not to say, 'Wow, this is really, really cool.'" Many of the youngsters, invited by Cal's Greek leadership, participated in the event last fall -- some in homemade costumes made from paper bags. Aside from fun, the children get exposure to a university and to college students. "Many of them don't ever think about college," said Shale, "but once a year, on Halloween, they get to see a big campus, big buildings. Year after year, if we can build relationships with these children through this event, they might think about coming here to college."


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