PLATTSBURGH Despite the dreary weather, approximately 300 children and their families enjoyed the festivities of the ninth annual Plattsburgh Housing Outlet Halloween Festival. The Oct. 25 event, which featured several activities for children, raised nearly $4,700 for the Ronald McDonald House Charities in Burlington, Vt. Participants were asked to make a $1 donation to trick or treat in Plattsburgh Housing Outlets display homes, explained Plattsburgh Housing Outlet marketing director Michelle LaBounty. It is a fun community event where children can trick or treat in a controlled environment and families can learn valuable safety lessons, said LaBounty. I am humbled by the generous donations of our business and community partners despite the poor economy. It is hard to believe that this was our ninth year, she added. My son was an infant when we started all of this. The amount collected this year brings Plattsburgh Housing Outlet's donations to the not-for-profit organization to approximately $29,000. The annual event is staffed and sponsored by area businesses and organizations. Many of the businesses got into the spirit of the day by decorating the porch of their home and dressing in costume, said LaBounty. Children participated in arts and crafts and were treated to cider and doughnuts. The kids were also entertained in the service waiting area at Della Honda by magician IshKabibble. Della Honda also provided one of its service bays for the Adirondack Safe Kids to offer car seat checks, replacing them, if needed. The Clinton County Sheriffs Department provided child identification cards, taking children's pictures and fingerprints, which are kept in a state database. District No. 3 Volunteer Fire Department was also on hand to give tours of their fire trucks and distribute fire safety information. Pamela Fenimore, executive director of the Ronald McDonald House, who received the donation from Plattsburgh Housing Outlet, said contributions such as theirs are what helps them in their mission. Were completely appreciative of what they do for us in hosting this fundraiser, said Fenimore. It gives us a connection across the lake in New York, which is so important to us. Over 60 percent of the people who use our services come from upstate New York. The event, added Fenimore, is a wonderful opportunity to meet with families who have benefited from Ronald McDonald House, which offers temporary lodging for families of children with illnesses.