JKPL’S TRUNK OR TREAT: A great way for our community to come together


Beth Demapan

The Joeten-Kiyu Public Library is the Marianas’ information hub, preserving its cultural heritage and connecting people, libraries, and the government to the resources and tools they need to succeed. JKPL has been building a strong community since 1991 and continues to create programs, services, and events that promote literacy in the Marianas.

The annual Trunk or Treat community event is a great example of how JKPL has built collaborative partnerships with local stakeholders. At this event, organizations come together to network and provide positive outreach services that give back to our community. They share treats and goodies while advertising some of their products and services. While it’s not common practice in the Marianas to go door-to-door to trick-or-treat, this event is a positive, family-friendly alternative that brings much joy to the children.

We welcome the community to participate in selecting the winner of the People’s Choice Award for the Best Decorated Trunk Contest. This year we are excited to announce that many of our community partners and organizations will be decorating their trunks this Halloween. The winner will receive a cash prize sponsored by Friends of the Joeten-Kiyu Public Library.

We didn’t expect the Trunk or Treat event to grow into something that our community looks forward to each year. Over the years, we’ve welcomed 3,000 to 5,000 families per event. During the pandemic, we pivoted and turned the Trunk or Treat into a Book-A-Treat, which was indoor trick or treating spread out over three days. We thank our many families for continuing to patronize the library and visiting us during Halloween. These events are for you, and we hope you continue to visit your library not just during this festive occasion but throughout the year. There are many free resources that we encourage you to utilize year-round.

The library is able to carry out this event every year by actively partnering and reaching out to many community members to provide sponsorship, donations, and volunteers. This event could not have been possible without all of our partners’ involvement.

Preparing for the event by beautifying the library

In preparation for this event, we spruced up the library by painting the parking lot earlier this year, thanks in large part to the Governor’s Council of Economic Advisors. We participated in the GCEA’s Adopt-a-Median Program, which supports community-wide beautification efforts that foster community pride. We are grateful for these beautification efforts as our parking lot has been restored from years of wear and tear. We thank our JKPL staff, family, Friends of the Joeten-Kiyu Public Library, and the amazing staff of Pacifica Insurance Underwriters who dedicated their time and efforts to clean and paint the two medians in front of the library and PIU.

The project also served as a great opportunity for Team JKPL to build teamwork amongst our staff and participate in healthy outdoor activities. We were all proud to have taken care of our environment, beautified the library for its patrons, and maintained the infrastructure of the building.

We’d like to thank our sponsors and donors who are supporting this event. To see a full list of all our Trunk or Treat partners, sponsors, and donors, you can visit or check out our Joeten-Kiyu Public Library website, Facebook, and Instagram page.

We wish you a safe, fun-filled Halloween!

For more information about GCEA’s programs, visit Engage with the Council on Facebook and Instagram (@cnmigov.economy) or contact them at

Beth Barcinas Demapan is the technical services librarian for the Joeten-Kiyu Public Library-CNMI State Library. She earned her bachelor’s degree in Classics from Case Western Reserve University in Cleveland, Ohio. Before working with JKPL, Demapan worked for the Northern Marianas Humanities Council’s Motheread/Fatheread CNMI family literacy program where she continues to serve as program coordinator. As the Technical Services Librarian for JKPL, Demapan oversees the programs and services for the JKPL. During her spare time, she loves spending quality time with her family.


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