Albany First Assembly of God
For the past five years, Albany First Assembly of God has provided a safe alternative to trick-or-treating, with its Light the Night event at the Linn County Fair & Expo Center.
“We just want to serve and love on our community, ” said lead pastor Frank Silverii. “Light the Night is safe, fun and free for kids.”
When Silverii took the lead pastor position at the church, the event was held at the church itself, but he wanted to take the event to the next level.
“We moved it to the fairgrounds because there was not enough room at the church, ” he said.
The church will take over the Calapooia and Santiam buildings at the Expo Center.
The Calapooia Building will have the main stage and feature a magician, raffles, a rock wall, monster truck rides, concessions, inflatables, hay rides and the first-aid area.
The Santiam Building will host events specific to preschoolers, including games and inflatables.
“During the fun we try to bring the Bible to life in a fun way through our game booths, ” said the children’s pastor, Dustin Hawkinson.
One of those games includes the Wall of Jericho, where children have to knock down blocks, which mimic the fall of the Wall of Jericho.
Not all games are Bible- themed. Many are sports-themed, including basketball, football, bowling, mini golf, baseball and more.
Though most of the event is free, there are a few things that cost money. The monster truck rides are $2 a ride.
“We tried to make this a free event, but were just not able to, ” Hawkinson said.
There will also be a “Paintball-A-Pastor” event. Cost is $1 per round, and the proceeds go to Project Rescue, a non-profit that helps women and girls escape the sex slavery trade.
The concessions are also not free.
“In the past, this event has been very accepted and well received the community, ” Silverii said. Last year’s event brought in 2, 300 people.
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