Hundreds of ghosts and goblins took to the streets today in the West Village. As our Gene Apodaca reports, this wasn't a zombie apocalypse, it was all for a good cause.
Halloween came extra early for hundreds of kids in the West Village.
But, this parade and party wasn't just for these little ghouls and goblins. Organizers were hoping to scare up a few bucks too.
"Any little bit of money we can help for the kids of this city is really important," said one parent.
The annual Halloween Fundraising festival was designed to raise money for the Bleecker Playground, a popular site for many families in the West Village.
Some of the equipment here is getting old and outdated, and needs replacement. That is a frightening prospect for a play area with such history.
"This is the hub of the West Village," said Jillian McIntyre President of the Friends of Bleecker Playground. "I mean this is where it all happens and this is a fantastic playground. My son who is now seven really learned to walk here. He was singing, playing."
That's the reason The Friends of Bleecker Playground enlisted dozens of donors and volunteers.
The New York City Classical Training Troup came out to teach kids some "thriller" moves.
Perry School was also here, helping kids decorate their very own jack-o-lanterns.
"The downtown area has an eclectic group of people that is very special to New York City and we are very proud to be a part of this," said Dawn Lesley Stewart, founder of Perry School. "We have been in the community for 15 years working with children, education and community."
Just four years ago, this event was nearly cancelled because there weren't enough volunteers. Today, however, the event is thriving and organizers are hoping that means more dollars in the donation box.''
"We're in an area in the West Side of Manhattan where we have some of the most park-starved neighborhoods around," said state Senator Brad Hoylman. "That's why Bleecker Playground is so important and that's why I'm so grateful to the organizers who stepped in about four years ago to save this event."
And save it they did. The event raised $25,000 for the upgrades, giving kids a boo-ti-ful gift they'll enjoy for years.