Trick-or-treaters suffer through record cold Halloween in Vail area
EAGLE COUNTY — As record low temperatures swept across the state on Wednesday, trick-or-treaters out for Minturn’s annual Halloween Eve festivities seemed mostly undeterred while thermometers approached zero degrees.
After recording record low temperatures from Grand Junction to Limon on Wednesday morning, the National Weather Service said Thursday morning would likely see record lows once again, before temps start to warm up heading into Friday.
Some Main Street residents had lit fires in their yards Wednesday for the many freezing children who would visit throughout the evening in Minturn — the annual Halloween Eve celebration is the upper valley’s only nightime trick-or-treating opportunity — and hundreds of kids joined in the festivities, adorned in winter clothing beneath their costumes.
Brandon Jemison and Joseph Dekanch, both 12, said they have been participating in trick or treat events in the Rocky Mountains their whole lives, and never remember being as cold as they were on Wednesday night while visiting houses on Main Street. They were joined by their friends Keelan Losa, Blake Roberts, Finn Courtney, all 12.
“We had to go into Kirby Cosmos a few times to warm up,” Jemison said.
Kirby Cosmos owner Mark Tamberino said the restaurant had more visitors coming in to warm up this year than any Halloween he can remember.
“It was fun getting everyone inside from the cold this year,” Tamberino said. “This is one of our favorite events anyways, getting to see all the kids, and this year we got to see even more kids.”
John Sellars from Minturn Mile Liquors has been watching kids pass by on Halloween for years. He said surprisingly, the cold didn’t seem to hold back the crowds at all this year.
“I couldn’t believe how many kids were still out there with how cold it is,” he said.
Even though kids aren’t allowed in the store without a parent, Sellars had to make an exception for one group this year.
“One poor kid had forgot his gloves, I told him you got two minutes to get those hands warmed up,” Sellars said with a laugh.
Eagle Valley Music and Comics doubled as a babysitting operation while one mother retrieved a warm vehicle for her kids, and the Minturn Saloon’s lobby turned into a loading zone for parents of freezing children.
Katy Trudeau, who lives on Main Street, started a fire in front yard fire pit to keep warm while handing out candy. After she had made her way back inside for the night, the fire pit remained a valuable community asset for trick-or-treaters needing a quick warm-up.
“We not sure whose house this is,” Homestake Peak student Chris Ortiz, 13, said from Trudeau’s yard. “But their fire sure is nice.”
Wolves were a problem for ranchers when Kip Gates’ great-great-grandfather homesteaded in the area. He doesn’t want the problem to return.