While it might seem that in some stores, Christmas decorations are trying to edge out Halloween, Trunk or Treat does come first.
As do a host of other Halloween happenings around the Rim Country.
Rose Harper has been putting on Trunk or Treat for Pine and Strawberry youth for 17 years.
Oct. 27 will be the 18th time she has organized the event and she has the costume contest down to a science.
"We generally see about 75 kids," Harper said.
Only when the costumed children arrive, do the judges-without-children decide what costume categories to use, but judges generally arrange children into four or five age groups, Harper said.
The contest is in Strawberry and is open to infants through sixth grade children.
First-, second- and third-place winners are awarded $5, $3 and $2 respectively.
"Everyone else gets a dollar," Harper said.
The grand prize is $20.
Cleverly costumed children who live in the Pine and Strawberry areas are asked to meet at 5 p.m. in the upper parking lot of prize sponsor ERA/Young Realty, located on the northwest corner of the 87 and Fossil Creek Road in Strawberry.
Costumes are judged at 5:30 p.m., plus Harper gives out other prizes and raffles throughout the contest.
At 6 p.m., members of Tonto Rim Search and Rescue usher the children across the road to the front of the old Strawberry Market where local residents are lined up in their vehicles to hand out treats.
Residents supply their own candy. They do not need to sign up, but they do need to be in place by 6 p.m.
The event is free.
Participating businesses in Pine will be open from noon to 4 p.m. on Saturday, Oct. 27 and Sunday, Oct. 28 for trick or treaters to feed their sweet tooth during the Fall Festival.
Trunks full of candy at Rumsey Park
"Dress in your favorite costume and join us for Halloween festivities," Deb Rose, Payson Parks and Recreation Coordinator said.
There will be music, candy and fun in north Rumsey Park from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. on Wednesday, Oct. 31.
Spooky music will waft across the park as disc jockey Fred Carpenter spins up howling good tunes.
Power-Rangers, princesses and pirates can get their dancing shoes out for the Monster Mash.
KCMA will be participating with music, as well passing out candy.
The Optimist Club will be serving food.
Games were not a hit last year, Rose said, but Parks and Recreation has planned a Fun House and a fortune teller will be on site to tell what the future will bring (sugar rushes, guessing games as to where mom hid the candy, plans for next year's costume).
This year's contest is not for costumed tricksters, instead, it is a challenge to the businesses dropping candy into children's treat bags and plastic jack-o'-lanterns.
Trunk contest categories are: Scariest, Funniest, Most Creative and Best in Show.
The Parks department supplies the candy and at press time there, a few trunk spots remained. Contact Deb Rose, (928) 474-5242 ext. 7 if interested.
The event is free.
Adults just wanna have fun
Adults can get their spook on at the Halloween Dance at the Mazatzal Mansion.
The casino transforms Friday and Saturday, Oct. 26 and 27 into a frightfully good place for costumed vampires and saloon girls, cowboys and bewitchingly lovely cowgirls to dance.
3 of a Kind is the featured band.
Doors open at 8 p.m.
More than $3,000 will go home in the pockets of the best-costumed Halloween celebrants, courtesy of the Mazatzal Casino.
Tickets go on sale Oct. 19 on the Mazatzal Casino Gift Shop.