We just can’t have any fun any more. The Aberdeen Optimist Club opens the Haunted Forest at Wylie Park this Friday and Saturday, but the terror will only come from zombies, axes, and fake blood and gore, not play guns:
After a request last year to have Haunted Forest volunteers and organizers scale back on their use of firearms and shot-replicating equipment, the Aberdeen Police Department asked that those types of props be dispensed with completely this year. The Optimist Club, which organizes the event, is honoring that request.
“We’d favor not having anything that simulates gunfire in a big event like this,” [Police Chief Dave] McNeil said. “If there were a discharge (that was not part of the event), it would be tough to determine.
“It prevents any miscommunication. It’s a safety and security issue for us,” he said [Kelda Pharris, “Police Ramp up Haunted Forest Presence, Guns Eliminated as Props,” Aberdeen American News, 2016.10.20].
But don’t worry: if you feel the need to bring your pistol to the playground, the cops are still cool with that:
Anybody attending Haunted Forest with a concealed handgun must follow applicable laws, said McNeil and Capt. Eric Duven. A permit is needed to carry, but there’s no law that prevents concealed weapons at parks.
“There are countless ways someone could get themselves in trouble if they weren’t following the law,” McNeil said [Pharris, 2016.10.20].
Have fun kids… but watch out for those grown-ups with unusual bulges under their clothes.