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Food, Fun and Families Fill the SCDD Falloween Carnival
Activities for the entire family and beautiful weather helped the Scioto County Developmental Disabilities host its biggest Falloween Carnival ever on Thursday, Oct. 26, at the Vern Riffe School (VRS) in Portsmouth.

“This was the biggest Falloween we’ve ever had! We estimate over 1,000 people through the gate,” said SCDD Outreach Coordinator Theresa Rowland.

Returning this year was an an old-fashioned style carnival, a haunted sensory hallway in the basement, a classroom cake-walk, and more. This year the event also added a Trunk-or-Treat activity with local organizations such as providers of caregiving services for individuals with developmental disabilities, Shawnee State University and local law enforcement, EMT, and fire departments participating.

“I am absolutely thankful and grateful to this community for turning out for our annual Falloween, as well as all of the people who showed up to pass out treats for our Trunk-or-Treat,” Rowland said. “We had first responders of all kinds and agencies who provide services to the DD community. Everyone brought their A-game for the Trunk-or-Treat!”

Dana Ward of Maysville, Ky., brought his custom-made 1966 Batmobile replica to Trunk-or-Treat. Through a partnership with Hot Wheels, he was able to hand out over 450 Hot Wheels toys at the event.

“Inside the school, we had the Portsmouth High School Jazz Band and outside we had K.C. Chatfield as DJ. We had an overwhelming response to our costume contest,” Rowland said.

Admission to the event was just 50 cents, or free with the donation of a non-perishable food item which the DD will donate to a local food pantry. Inside the carnival, tickets were sold for all of the games, food, and activities. Throughout these activities, the Falloween Carnival was able to raise money for the VRS Parent-Teacher Organization to purchase Christmas gifts for students attending Vern Riffe School.
Money was also raised for Scioto County Special Olympics from a raffle ticket sale to win a gift basket filled with gift cards valued at $350. The winner was selected during the carnival.

“It was a phenomenal evening. I am humbled and grateful to everyone who helped. Our staff is incredible; they turned out in force with family members to help out,” Rowland said.

For more information about the programs and services at Scioto County Developmental Disabilities, call 740-353-0636 or visit online at, and like and follow them on Facebook and TikTok.