Visitors knocking on doors Tuesday night weren’t looking for candy.
They were participating in Trick or Treat So Others Can Eat, which started in Hays in 2004.
Volunteers from Hays High School’s DECA, Boy Scouts, 4-H Clubs and others divided up the city and set out to collect food for the Community Assistance Center.
DECA students and others gathered at the Dillons on Hall Street to get their assignments from DECA sponsor Shaina Prough.
Some, such as Hays High juniors Marissa Dinkel and Kristen Nease, are new to DECA.
Nease has volunteered for the event with her family, but this was the first time in DECA with her friends.
Fort Hays State University junior Taylor Herman wasn’t in DECA as a Hays High student, but some friends were.
“I think it could be a lot of fun and a way to interact with different people in the community,” she said.
“It looks good on my resume, and it’s a way to do community service,” said Chase Hageman, also an FHSU junior.
Others getting their canvassing assignments from Prough were former DECA students Amanda Bird and Catie Doty. Braeden Robinson and Daniel Leach, who are also studying business management at North Central Kansas Technical College, joined them for the community service project.
When it didn’t work as a class service project, the four decided to make it their own.
“We’re just doing volunteer work,” Doty said.
No one answered the door at several houses in the northwest neighborhood the college-age-group was covering, but most who opened the door to greet the volunteers contributed. A few left bags of food on the porch, making it easy on the volunteers.
“I usually put a sack out, but I forgot this year. We’re just supposed to give back,” said Becky Hill, who returned to the door with a bag of canned goods for Hageman. “It’s awesome to see the high school kids doing it, (and I do it) to support them.”
Mike Michaelis, also a volunteer, picks up loads of food from those collecting and takes the items to the CAC so there isn’t so much to do at the end of the evening.
“It’s about the kids and them doing something for the community and hanging out with their friends,” Michaelis said.
Though no one answered when Hageman knocked at some houses, he had few turndowns from those who did answer.
“I expected it to not be as cooperative,” he said. “Everybody’s been real cooperative.”