by Michelle Gabriel
What used to be the Halloween Party is now the Saint Barbara’s Festival, and this year was its first year. The reason that we chose to do a Saint Barbara’s Festival rather than a Halloween party, was because we wanted to go back to our Lebanese traditions. The turnout was incredible with an attendance of over fifty families. The food was delicious; there were gluten free options for those with dietary restrictions, along with candy and sweets to help celebrate the holiday. There were games and activities that all had to do with the life of Saint Barbara so that the kids would be having fun while also learning about her life. The games and activities included a ball toss, where the kids had to “feed the animals” that wanted to kill Saint Barbara. There was a face painting and mask making station, where the kids had to “choose a disguise” to help her hide from her persecutors and a cookie making station to “feed Saint Barbara” after her long journey. A storyteller narrated the life of Saint Barbara and why we celebrate her. The evening ended with a piñata for the older and younger kids. We were very excited about this year’s festival, and are even more excited for the next one.