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‘Spooky Town’ helps United Way Suncoast team reconnect in person

Nikki Moschen's spectacular Spooky Town helped revive in-person connections at United Way Suncoast's Tampa office.

Something unusual emerges in United Way Suncoast’s Tampa office every October. A ghoulish environment appears, replete with spooky carnival rides. It does not take a raven’s eye or a witch’s broom to see the festivity. Fireworks, skeletons and ravens complete the setting for Nikki’s Spooky Town.

It is a frightening fun time courtesy of Nikki Moschen, United Way Suncoast’s gift stewardship manager. As the worst of t

United Way Suncoast CEO Jessica Muroff joined the festivities surrounding Spooky Town.

he pandemic begins to subside, the nonprofit continues to operate a hybrid schedule in its Tampa office, but commemorating Spooky Town helped team members reconnect – in costumes.

The revelers included United Way Suncoast CEO Jessica Muroff. Her involvement reflects the culture of the organization and a commitment to caring for team members. Muroff shared her perspective on this aspect in a recent Muroff Memo.

Prior to the pandemic, team members dressed up and decorated their cubicles. Spooky Town reignites that tradition. Nikki’s display covers three tables and contains multiple levels of detail. The display has everything from a witches’ tower to a haunted carnival. Like a pumpkin patch at the start of fall, the village continues to grow. The display has twenty-two buildings and nearly fifty figurines.

Team members Emily Chavez, Brittany Bruns and Autumn Pandolfo recently celebrated the spectacular Spooky Town Halloween Village created by Nikki Moschen (center).

Nikki devotes hours to the project. She painted all the grass, collected the pieces, and found the best way to assemble it. Team members enjoyed watching as the display grew leading up to the Halloween season. She constantly collects and reimagines the scene.

Many people have seen Christmas villages, and Nikki traces the origins of her Halloween village to the time she eyed a beautiful Christmas Village display at her aunt’s home. The arrangement was filled with joy and colorful lights. While taking in the awe of the decorations, Nikki could not help but say “I wish I had a Halloween version of that.”

Spooky Town helped fulfill Nikki’s wish, but as November rolls around, she’ll begin to transform the scene into a holiday village. The United Way Suncoast team will watch and help our teammate as we celebrate the holidays.

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