Halloween on Central eyes 3rd annual return, seeks sponsorships to support event

Halloween on Central eyes 3rd annual return, seeks sponsorships to support event

Attendees at the 2021 Halloween On Central
Photo courtesy Halloween On Central

Halloween on Central is back in St. Pete – we hope! After a wildly successful first two years, the annual Halloween event shutting down the streets of the Grand Central and EDGE Districts is planning a return for 2023.

For the moment, however, Halloween on Central III remains in the “maybe” category as the privately-run event seeks sponsorships in St. Pete’s corporate business community to help fund the 22-block long family-friendly Halloween extravaganza. Organizers – the EDGE and Grand Central District Associations – tell I Love the Burg that they need to raise $80K in sponsorship funding to reach the break-even point and officially bring Halloween on Central back to the Burg on Sunday, October 29.

The sprawling event closes off Central Avenue to cars from 9th Street to 31st Street, filling the corridor with a pedestrian-friendly Halloween paradise. Halloween on Central is a massive showcase of all things St. Pete, as the streets and sidewalks are filled with food trucks, performers, artists, local makers and vendors, and neighborhood bars, restaurants and shops showcasing their wares.

There are also live performances, dog and family-friendly activities (including the wiener dog race), and of course, plenty of candy for trick-or-treaters of all ages. Organizers are also working with St. Pete favorite LocalShops1 to create a massive local vendor market right in the middle of the action.


David Foote, Executive Director of the Grand Central District Association, and Roger Curlin, Executive Director of the EDGE Business District Association, are the team behind Halloween on Central, and the pair is confident that community sponsors will step up to help ensure the event takes place. Last year’s title sponsor garnered 24 millions impressions from its $25K sponsorship. Interested sponsors of any level can visit halloweenoncentral.com.

People at Halloween on Central
Photos courtesy Halloween on Central

The team just began seeking sponsorships last week, and while a title sponsor is the biggest need, they’re looking for community business partners at all levels. The majority of the funds are used to pay the City to close and block the streets all afternoon, and also cover overtime costs for the many police officers and city employees needed to staff and patrol the event.

Halloween on Central’s inaugural event in 2021 drew 75,000 attendees, followed by more than 100,000 in 2022. In 2023, they expect to top 125,000 costumed festival goers strolling up and down the bustling stretch of Central Avenue, and they are planning even more activities and activations to fill the streets.

“It’s just a day to be happy and to be kids again – for the kids to be kids and the adults to be kids,” Curlin said. “Half the size of the city is in one place at the same time. Everyone is together celebrating each other.”

“I believe wholeheartedly in the event,” Foote said. “A reporter told me after attending both years, ‘There’s just a sense of happiness. Everybody was having fun.’”

Once Halloween on Central passes the break-even point, Foote and Curlin’s district associations are able to allocate the funds toward the continued support of their business communities. And for the businesses themselves, Halloween On Central presents an opportunity for EDGE and Grand Central shops and restaurants to welcome people who might not otherwise find their way through the door, providing tremendous exposure to the 125,000+ locals.

Stay tuned to I Love the Burg for updates on Halloween on Central III, and visit halloweenoncentral.com for more information.


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