‘Magical and mystical’
Clothes and costumes have the power to make the wearer feel certain things, like being empowered in a dress suit or feeling relaxed in a pair of sweatpants. As for an attendee of the Santa Barbara Zoo’s Boo at the Zoo event, her outfit uplifted her.
“I feel magical and mystical,” said 11-year-old Margaret Eglin, who was dressed up as a beach ball with her best friend Abby Roth, 11. The girls were side by side, bouncing through the crowd with energy.
Margaret and Abby were at the Santa Barbara Zoo for the first night of Boo at the Zoo, a three-day event at the zoo to celebrate Halloween.
“At first we were going to go as Mario and Luigi, but then our costumes wouldn’t arrive in time,” said Abby. “So I’m like, ‘Oh, what should we be?’”
The answer rolled in from her brother’s birthday party.
“We had a ton of extra beach balls,” said Abby. “And then at his birthday party, we were putting them on our heads so I had the idea of just poking our feet through them and making overalls and then we were beach balls.”
The creativity of the two girls turned heads Friday night, as they joked and played with each other.
“I really like the idea that we are making the costumes ourselves because it was really fun and creative,” said Margaret.
During their interview with the News-Press, Abby’s mother Jaana stood by with a proud smile on her face. She had helped the girls make these colorful and crafty costumes and seems prepared for other creative ventures the girls will come up with.
“The girls have a wild, wild imagination, and there’s lots of interesting surprises coming out of (Abby’s) bedroom. You never know when you open the door,” said Ms. Roth.
Ms. Roth also appreciated the reusing aspect of the girls’ idea. By using the leftover beach balls from her son’s birthday party, Ms. Roth saved both time and money.
“I came home from work and I was like ‘Ok, let’s go,’” said Ms. Roth. “I didn’t have to go to Amazon and spend tons of money. I’m happy with that.”
Along with the beach balls, jedis, wizards and skeletons were also present, and they transformed the Santa Barbara Zoo into a scene out of a Halloween movie Friday night. Friday’s inaugural activities included mazes, costumed characters and a dance party for children and parents alike to enjoy.
One of the participants of Boo at the Zoo was one pumpkin named Lainey Garcia. At two years old, Lainey gave everyone around her someone to keep up with her dance moves. Dressed in a pumpkin whose eyes and jagged smile glowed neon bright, she popped and locked on the dance floor with her mom. With Lainey, others also packed onto the dance floor, trying to keep in tandem with the future dance extraordinaire.
Lainey was not the only one having the time of her life at Boo at the Zoo. Noor Alhajji, at three years old, was dragging her parents through a haunted house. Rather than running away from the skeletons and other spooky things, Noor was running after them. When the haunted house experience was over, Noor was still running, with her father trailing along.
This was Noor’s first Halloween experience in the U.S., and she donned a skeleton princess attire that she will most likely bring back to her home in Saudi Arabia, along with the memories she and others children have created Friday night at the zoo.
Boo at the Zoo continues today and Sunday from 4:30 to 8:30 p.m. Tickets, which range from $12 to $20, can be bought at sbzoo.org/visit/event-calendar/boo-zoo/.