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MTANG Family Program treats kids to Halloween party

An Airman helps his son draw on a pumpkin during the Montana Air National Guard Airman and Family Readiness Program Halloween party held for children of guardsmen at the 120th Airlift Wing in Great Falls, Mont., Oct. 14, 2015.  (U.S. Air National Guard photo by Senior Master Sgt. Eric Peterson/Released)

An Airman helps his son draw on a pumpkin during the Montana Air National Guard Airman and Family Readiness Program Halloween party held for children of guardsmen at the 120th Airlift Wing in Great Falls, Mont., Oct. 14, 2015. (U.S. Air National Guard photo by Senior Master Sgt. Eric Peterson/Released)

A child dressed as a dinosaur receives a treat from his father during the Montana Air National Guard Airman and Family Readiness Program Halloween party held for children of guardsmen at the 120th Airlift Wing in Great Falls, Mont., Oct. 14, 2015. (U.S. Air National Guard photo by Senior Master Sgt. Eric Peterson/Released)

A child dressed as a dinosaur receives a treat from his father during the Montana Air National Guard Airman and Family Readiness Program Halloween party held for children of guardsmen at the 120th Airlift Wing in Great Falls, Mont., Oct. 14, 2015. (U.S. Air National Guard photo by Senior Master Sgt. Eric Peterson/Released)

GREAT FALLS, Mont. -- The Montana Air National Guard Airman and Family Readiness Program treated kids to an early Halloween party this year in the 120th Airlift Wing Headquarters Building October 14.

The little ghosts, goblins and action heroes took part in activities and games that included pumpkin head races, bean-bag toss, potato sack races and tin can bowling. A photo booth was set up to let the costumed kids pose with their friends and take selfies. Hot dogs, decorated cupcakes and treats were also prepared in case any of the active ghouls worked up a hunger.

The event was the first Halloween-themed party held on base for the children of guardsmen and was the idea of Mrs. Amy Smith, wife of 120th Airlift Wing Commander Col. Lee Smith, and Airman and Family Readiness Program Manager Paige Held.  Air Wing Integrator, April Ruckdaschel, Senior Airman Hillary McCrumb and a group of volunteers worked together to set up games, place decorations and prepare the treats that were served.

Held said the mid-week date was selected because children attending Great Falls Public Schools were given an early out from classes and would be out of school for the rest of the week.

"We thought that since this was their Friday it would be good to kind of have something fun on their last day of class," Held said.

Held hoped the event would be a hit with parents and their children and becomes an annual activity.

The event allows MTANG to thank the children for supporting their parent's continued military service. It also gives the children a chance to visit their mom or dad's workplace. 

"I think it's important to get the children up here as much as we can so they know where it is their parent works," Held said.

A contest was also held between offices in the Headquarters Building to see who could win bragging rights for having the most creative Halloween-themed office decorations and costumes. This year the recruiting team won the contest with their ghastly and eerie design.  

Held said the next big project for the Family Programs will be the annual holiday event held during the December unit training assembly.
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