Botts Offers Tricks and Treats


Misha Khan

Photos by Misha Irfan

Every year the residents of Botts Hall go head to head in a hall decorating competition around Halloween and invite all little trick-or-treaters in the neighborhood to stop by for candy and a walk through their own haunted house. The winning hall receives one hundred dollars from the Resident’s Hall Association (RHA) that they can put towards their hall programs.

The event took place from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. and the elementary school students, all decked out in their costumes, walked in with their parents and a tour guide around Botts. The halls had been judged earlier that day around 4 p.m. and the winning hall was announced at the end of the night. This year’s winner was hall 2B and second place went to hall in 2C.

Amber Davis Blackburn, Assistant Director of Operations Residential Life, said, “This is actually the tenth year we have done this and I think we improve each year. RHA organized it this year and they did a great job. It’s as good as it gets.”

Each hall was decorated with spooky decorations from black paper all over the walls, to ghosts and creepy- looking dolls. The residents also dressed up as scary characters such as a werewolf, witch, mental doctor, and even a statue that jumps at you at just the right time.

The Community Advisor on 3B, sophomore Kim Mak said, “It’s nothing too scary for the kids. We want to make sure they have fun and Duval County isn’t really the safest neighborhood to trick or treat in. Also, it helps JU get its name out. “

Amber Blackburn would agree to that saying, “JU is a safe place, we have a gated community and a good patrol team from campus security. It brings the community together. Everyone in the halls is working together and it is just clean safe fun.”

Greek Life even participated and organized fun games for the children to play outside in William’s Circle before they took their tour of Botts. According to Blackburn, Botts makes for the perfect haunted house because of its narrow dark halls.

“We tried it in Oak and Williams before but the halls in Oak are too wide and the little kids kept getting lost. Oak is too big and some parents did not even get to take their kids through the other buildings. So we decided to keep it in Botts. It sets the perfect mood for it.”

The Community Advisor of 2B, Janae LafLeur, junior, said she was very excited about it. “The kids is always the fun part and I like to go all out every year. We did this last year as well and it was a lot of fun. I say scare them when they are younger so they aren’t scared when they are older.”

Blackburn said of the overall event, “I think it went great. The kids loved it and the parents were thrilled as well. This was our tenth anniversary doing it and I can’t wait for next year to do it better.”