Bathurst — Last week, Bathurst Mayor Paolo Fongemie was surprised to find out that the northern city has an old bylaw forbidding trick-or-treating after 7 p.m., and banning teens over the age of 14 from taking part.
Drafted in 2005, the bylaw has never been enforced — that is until this Halloween, when police will be handing out fines to any teens who dress up and anyone out after 7. Needless to say, all three of the older teenagers who live in Bathurst are displeased.
“This sucks — I was going to dress up as Hillary Clinton,” said Jessica Wilby, 15. “I just wanted to hand out a few pamphlets about the U.S. election, and of course get some candy. I wasn’t going to egg anyone’s place or whatever the old people think teenagers get up to… maybe I could just trick-or-treat at a few houses on my own street?”
Wilby’s friend Tara McKnight, 16, said she purchased her Halloween costume on eBay almost 8 months ago, and has been looking forward to showing it off around Bathurst on the big night.
“Every other night of the year, there’s absolutely nothing to do — at all — in this ‘city,’ if you can even call it that, and Halloween is the one exception,” moaned McKnight. “Everyone moves away the second they turn 18. I want to move away too, but noooo, my parents are making me stick around to appreciate the ‘natural beauty’ of Bathurst, blah blah. It’s boring, and I want candy!”
The other Bathurst teenager, 16-year-old Bryce Forrestal, said he wasn’t planning to go trick-or-treating until he heard that doing so could put him at risk of getting a fine.
“I can’t say I’m surprised to hear about a law that removes the one fun thing teenagers could do legally in this town,” said Forrestal, lighting a cigarette. “It’s disappointing, but typical of Bathurst. Normally I just drink and do drugs at night since there’s nothing else going on, but they’ve made trick-or-treating just as badass this year. I get a huge rush off breaking the law — I dare them to fine me.”
Police say on Halloween they’ll be installing tracking chips in the three teenagers’ phones to ensure they don’t leave their respective bedrooms in pursuit of anything resembling “fun.”
“Those three have been up to no good since they hit puberty,” said Cont. Rémi LeBlanc. “I’ve been looking for an excuse to lock them up and throw away the key, but unfortunately their parents say I just have to wait for them to move down to Fredericton for university and never come back.
“On Halloween, though, keeping Bathurst’s many old people safe from those three teens is my top priority.”