By LINDA CHION KENNEY
Set to return for a 32nd year is the wildly popular and much-anticipated Trick or Treat Street at Riverview High School on Boyette Road.
Delayed last year because of the coronavirus pandemic, the event returns this year Oct. 23, 2 to 6 p.m., presented by the Greater Riverview Chamber of Commerce, Hillsborough County Parks and Recreation, Hillsborough County Sheriff’s Office and Riverview High.
Leading the effort is this year’s chair and chamber member Theresa Sharkey, who with her wife, Karen, owns Your Pie on Bloomingdale Avenue, as well as the franchise under which it operates, Four Amazing Turtles.
“We attended Trick or Treat Street two years ago when we were a new business and had so much fun,” Theresa Sharkey said, about why she stepped up to chair the event. “We love working with kids and we do a lot of things around that, so it just made a lot of sense for us to participate. We got the word out where we were located and we had people coming into Your Pie saying, ‘We saw you at Trick or Treat Street.’ We’ve seen the residual effect.”
Promoting the event as well, at the Nov. 28 chamber luncheon meeting at The Regent in Riverview, was attorney and event co-chair Kristi McCart, of McCart & Tesmer, P.A., who explained to attendees what TOTS means to the chamber and its members, who are referred to as investors.
“It’s our annual event where we create a safe and fun environment for local kids and youth to trick-or-treat,” McCart said. “And what it is for you [as business owners and representatives] is an opportunity to get your face in front of the parents of more than 4,000 kids, which is how many we had at our last event.”
The lowest fee to reserve TOTS “BOOooth” space is $45 for chamber members and $245 for non-members, which includes a one-year basic level chamber membership. All booth operators are required to have enough candy to distribute to 5,000 kids.
“It’s great for businesses because they want to participate and be engaged where they live and do business locally,” said Sierra Carch, who works at the chamber. “There’s also a play area, with inflatables and bounce houses, and everybody is eligible to participate in a costume contest for kids.”
The Monster Mash Kid Zone is set to be presented by Christopher Ligori & Associates, attorneys at law, and there’s also a costume contest for dogs, sponsored by Canine Cabana, which in the past has attracted other pets as well, including a pot-bellied pig.
Additional add-on booth space sponsorships range from “Mummy” ($100 to $150) to “Ghouls and Goblins” ($1,500), topped by the exclusive “Jack-o-Lantern” sponsorship ($1,750), which has been purchased by Christopher Ligori & Associates and includes the first booth space inside the TOTS entrance.
Signature event sponsors under the $1,000 “Dracula” category are St. Joseph’s Hospital South, Suncoast Credit Union Riverview Service Center, the Bridges Retirement Community and The Mosaic Company, as noted by Tesmer in her luncheon remarks.
While there is no admission fee to enter TOTS, the Kid’s Costume Contest carries a $5 entrance fee for each of the four age-level competitions. The times are as follows: up to age 3 (3 p.m.), ages 4 to 7 (3:30 p.m.), ages 8 to 11 (4:30 p.m.) and ages 12 to 15 (5 p.m.).
Riverview High School is at the corner of Boyette and Balm Riverview roads, at 1131 Boyette Road. Visit the chamber online at www.RiverviewChamber.com. Call: 813-234-5944.