Douglas County kids get free Halloween costumes thanks to nonprofit

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CASTLE ROCK, Colo. -- Hundreds of Douglas County kids received free Halloween costumes Friday thanks to some local parents still grieving from the loss of their daughter.

Rylie Guentensberger passed away in May 2017 after a car plowed into a Parker store where she was shopping.

Her parents created Rylie's ARK, short for Acts of Random Kindness, as a way to pay tribute to Rylie.

"One of the things we really focus on is bringing joy to people," said Meghann Guentensberger. "We try to do different activities every month. Sometimes they're smaller scale where we have people come out and do things together, and sometimes they are this."

For 2 1/2 hours Friday afternoon, kids and parents poured into the gymnasium at Castle Rock Elementary School, where costumes of all sizes were piled on tables.

"To bring something so beautiful out of it is amazing," said Kristin Parsons.

Parsons came to the event after struggling to find an affordable costume at nearby stores.

"When you have more than one kid, you're looking at well over $100," she said. "We need help too. Maybe not as much as other people, but Halloween just gets so expensive."

The Guentensbergers reached out to the Douglas County School District to gather and distribute the costumes. In total, more than 800 costumes were donated.

"Rylie would be prancing around here in some sort of crazy costume, rallying the troops," said Meghann. "She's definitely smiling."

Learn more about Rylie's ARK on the organization's website.

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