BARC offers spooky safe ways to celebrate Halloween

Courtesy of Morgan Pettis

By Madalyn Watson | Reporter

For students looking for fun, safe and sober ways to celebrate on Halloween, the Baylor Peer Allies Coalition is hosting a Haunted Game Night from 7 to 9 p.m. Wednesday in the Beauchamp Recovery Addiction Center (BARC) in the East Village Residential Community.

Baylor’s Peer Allies Coalition is the local chapter of ACCEPT (Allies Cultivating Change by Empowering Positive Transformation), which partners with the BARC to promote positive change.

New Braunfels senior Morgan Pettis, president of the Peer Allies Coalition, explained what the Peer Allies Coalition was created to do and how it helps students in recovery.

“The [Peer Allies Coalition] PAC is a group of Baylor students either in recovery or allies of those in recovery that create sober social events and recovery education presentations in order to decrease the stigma around recovery at Baylor,” Pettis said.

Houston senior Allie Herbert, secretary of the Peer Allies Coalition, said they plan and promote recovery, stigma reduction, education and prevention events.

“The BARC is the physical location and place in the building, but that usually goes hand and hand with Baylor’s recovery programs as a whole,” Herbert said. “[The BARC] is our home base and we’re a branch of them.”

The Peer Allies Coalition meets every other Sunday to plan events like the Haunted Game Night. Herbert said everyone at the meetings knows each other fairly well, making conversation and brainstorming flow smoothly.

“For me, that’s the meeting where I can be a total mess on Sunday, still in my sweat pants, I can go unwind — I know the people there, I trust them there. We all brainstorm, and [it’s] a very equal process of everybody sharing their input, everybody sharing suggestions,” Herbert said.

Des Moines, Iowa junior Rachel Schneider said there will be a Halloween movie playing as well as candy for students to snack on in addition to the games.

“I am a big board game person myself, so this will be a chance to play games that require a lot more people,” Schneider said.

Pettis suggested events on campus would be safe and sober options for students as well as the Haunted Game Night.

Schneider suggested watching a spooky movie with a friend, reverse trick or treating in your hall or apartment by dressing up and giving candy to your neighbors or checking to see if your CL is having an event to celebrate Halloween safely.

Herbert suggested an exercise class or another form of self care on Halloween, so students can feel good while they’re celebrating. Herbert also suggested a few other festive ideas.

“Go to a haunted house, play some spooky games — I know when I was a kid there was ‘Guess what body part this food is?’ or something like that — and this may just be me, but I am a firm believer that it’s not what you’re doing, but who you’re doing it with where you can make fun out of the most mundane things,” Herbert said.

The BARC is open to all students all year around, not just on holidays.

“If you ever need to go, the BARC is non-judgmental and anyone can come. [Students] are welcome to come to a [Peer Allies Coalition] PAC meeting. You don’t have to have a problem, there’s no stigma, nobody’s going to judge you — you don’t have to fit into a specific box, just anybody who wants to come is more than welcome to come,” Herbert said.