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Shoppers horrified by Mall-oween monsters

The kids were on a mission.

Armed with smiles, sacks and their parents trailing somewhere nearby, hundreds of local children swarmed through Kitsap Mall Wednesday, Oct. 31, in search of delectable candy and other goodies in what has become a tradition for many parents.

“I told my daughter that if we were going trick-or-treating, it would have to be indoors,” Caraita Quintos of Bremerton said. “And the weather’s not usually that great on Halloween.”

Her daughter, Quela Quintos, was outfitted in an costume straight from “A Chorus Line” — complete with a gold top hat.

“Red Hots are my favorite candy,” said the 8-year-old Crown Hill Elementary School student, “and Bit-of-Honeys. I don’t like Skittles.”

Quintos was traveling through the mall with her friend Jordan Morrison, an 8-year-old Naval Avenue Elementary School student.

“I like Tootsie Roll Pops,” said Morrison, who dressed as a witch. “And I got some Mickey Mouse stickers, too.”

Mall workers passing out the goodies, and some who weren’t, got into the Halloween spirit as well.

Marc Zahniser and Mike Balmaceda, who both work at Cinnabon, decided to come to work in drag.

“Why not?” Zahniser asked. “It’s only one day a year.”

He said he borrowed the dress he was wearing from his sister, who supported his choice by doing his makeup.

While Zahniser handed out candy, Balmaceda was busy working on another batch of Cinnabons behind the counter in a hula-dancer costume.

Mall officials said fewer kids trick-or-treated this year, but were pleased with the event overall.

“All of the stores had a lot of candy, the kids had a lot of fun and everyone had a great time,” said mall marketing director Stacey Ames.

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