NEW BRITAIN - It was a Halloween party for the record books.
Hundreds of people flocked to the New Britain Museum of American Art Sunday for a Halloween Spooktacular.
“We’re thrilled,” marketing director Lisa Lappe said. “We have something for everyone.”
Dancing Michael Jackson’s “Thriller” on the museum’s lawn - every 10 minutes - were members of the YWCA of New Britain Dance Team.
One of the 14 members was 15-year-old Alanise Jimenez.
“She loves to dance,” her dad said. “She has another performance after this from 4 to 8.”
YWCA performing arts and athletics director Christine Kuzia watched the dancers while enjoying the event herself.
“They’ve been working so hard for this,” Kuzia said. “We started preparing at the end of August and we’ve been working every Saturday from the beginning of September until now. I’m very proud of them.”
All local youth from New Britain, Plainville, Berlin and elsewhere, the dancers put thought into every piece of their presentation, from their outfits and makeup to their zombie-like sloop on the grass in between performances.
Adults enjoyed a beer garden on the terrace, featuring fall-themed craft selections from Alvarium and Five Churches breweries.
Kids partook in a variety of festive fun, from making slime to working on art projects related to the NBMAA’s current exhibitions and more.
“People feel really grateful to have a safe, family-friendly way to spend Halloween,” Lappe pointed out.
All ages participated in a Walter Wick-themed scavenger hunt. The American artist is best known for his photographs in the popular I SPY book series.
“We have a huge collection of his original photographs and we like to rotate them in different exhibits,” Lappe explained.
The Halloween collection is currently on display and it won’t be long before Wick’s Christmas and winter pieces go up.
Museum staff spent months planning the Halloween celebration with the mission of offering a safe and fun event during the ongoing pandemic while partnering with community organizations, showcasing local products and drawing new visitors.
“It’s our mission to bring as many people as possible into the museum to share our content and collections,” Lappe said. “That’s really what we’re here to do.”
Erica Drzewiecki can be reached at email@example.com.