Some very strange things are going on at Sandy Regional Convalescent & Rehabilitation Center these days.

Family members are helping patients dress weirdly, staff members are stockpiling hundreds of pounds of candy, and cobwebs, haystacks, and orange and black decorations are appearing from nowhere. They're even practicing dimming the lights.The reason is, of course, the second annual Halloween Spook Alley for the children of West Jordan and Sandy. Last year, between 500 and 600 youngsters bombarded the long-term care facility and received candy treats from each of the 100 costumed residents.

This year's celebration promises to be just as big.

Why channel so much energy into Halloween?

Two reasons, said Susan Ison, the facility's therapeutic coordinator. First, children and geriatric patients belong together; the benefits are obvious. And secondly, Sandy Regional can give something back to the community.

"This is trick or treating the way it used to be. The treats are safe; the guests are obviously very welcome," Ison said.