Flights and frights at Calhoun's Monster Bash
Eight-year-old Kylee Sebastian stood in front of a haunted house and dared those around her to come inside.
"It's not scary inside," she promised, her small fingers pulling back a thick curtain to reveal utter darkness and a barn-like stench of wet hay.
One kid yelled out, "I'm not going in there," and another chimed in, "Neither am I."
The young charmer from Port Lavaca continued to coerce the other children to join her - she twirled in a blood-red gown, she smiled through thick vampire bride makeup, and she even threatened to tickle a few passers-by - and finally, they all braved the building.
With one howl and a faint scream in the background, Kylee stopped dead in her tracks. Turns out, she was the one afraid of the haunt.
Children of all ages joined their parents and friends Saturday for Halloween-themed events at the Calhoun County Airport. The event, which is in its third year, is geared toward providing fun for its neighbors and also introducing children to the world of aviation, said manager Steve Plunkett.
In groups of three, children 8 through 17 years old were invited onto a small airplane and cruised through the sky with a volunteer pilot. The event draws in about 60 children each year and costs the airport more than $1,000 in fuel and time, Plunkett said.
Dravyn Trevino, 10, of Port Lavaca, said he'd never been in an airplane before, but for some reason, he loved them.
He and his 8-year-old brother, Zaidyn, anxiously sat in the aircraft, put on their headphones and waved as the propeller turned. Their mother waved back, holding in her fear.
"I'm worried," Brenda Rodriguez said, clenching her hands together. "But I want them to be able to do what they love."
Rodriguez doesn't allow her children to collect candy Halloween night, so events like the Monster Bash at the airport are a real treat, she said. "It gives them a chance to have fun."
Children at the event also were able to decorate pumpkins, jump in bounce houses and participate in a rousing game of squash bowling.
At the end of the event, cars lined the parking lot, popped their trunks and dished out candy.
"It was a lot of fun," Kylee said, pointing out she finally conquered her fears by braving the haunted house at least seven times - with the help of a few new friends.
"It's not scary," she smiled. "I promise."