ST. PETERSBURG - A Halloween tradition more than a decade in the making continues to grow in St. Petersburg's Old Northeast neighborhood.
Thousands of children showed up to the area on Halloween night not only for the candy, but for the elaborate decorations neighbors put on their homes and in their yards.
Neighbors estimated 3,500 kids roamed their streets to trick-or-treat.
“We moved in about 35 years ago, and since then, everybody has been doing pretty much the same thing," said Vince Shook, who decorates his home with skeletons and lights. "This block is known for where you come to trick or treat," said Shook.
He said each year he has increased the amount of candy he buys to meet the demands of the crowd.
“This year we bought a couple hundred more, because usually it goes up 100 or 200 a year," said Shook.
In between going door-to-door for candy, children could go on hay rides, explore haunted houses and yards, and take pictures with neighbors dressed as popular characters.
“For me Halloween is just having fun. Getting out, seeing everybody, they’re not afraid of anything anymore," said Jeff, who identified himself as the 'The St Pete Beetle Juice."
Several neighbors said despite spending a month decorating for Halloween, they can't wait to put in even more work preparing their homes for the Christmas holiday, which is said to be even more elaborate.