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She’s reaaady for treats

Eileen JoyceIt took Shirley Wyckoff of Grass Valley four months to make costumes of SpongeBob SquarePants and his friend Patrick.
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Along with all the firefighters, tiny pop divas, Harry Potter impostors and pint-size witches that are sure to frequent the Cypress Hill neighborhood in search of Halloween riches tonight, one familiar cartoon character is sure to soak up much of the spotlight.

He’s known to his fans for his rectangular trousers and squishy, cube-shaped noggin.

Yes, children: For one night only, SpongeBob SquarePants becomes real, and not just a cartoon character on afternoon television.



And tonight, he’ll be gobbling up Snickers. And SweeTarts. And candy corn.

For four months, Doris Drive resident Shirley Wyckoff has been sewing, pasting, cutting and dreaming up ideas for a life-size costume of the popular Cartoon Network character.




The end result is a dead-on replication of the unfailingly innocent animated icon.

“I think I look awesome,” Wyckoff said after donning her bulky, boxy costume for a handful of visitors Tuesday.

Wyckoff spent an average of four hours a day creating the ultimate cartoon character. It includes SpongeBob’s signature red tie, white shirt and oddly crooked nose, which Wyckoff created out of papier mache and hot-glued to the cardboard that makes up the bulk of the costume.

“If I wasn’t working on it, I was thinking about it,” Wyckoff, 33, said of her get-up.

Mom was “all stressed out,” son Joe Ramus said.

“I’m creative,” Wyckoff admitted. “I can make anything out of anything.”

Ramus, 13, can attest to that. He’s spending Halloween dressed as Patrick Starfish, SpongeBob’s underwater companion.

Ramus, an eighth-grader at Lyman Gilmore Middle School, will wear a sheet, lips made of felt and pants fashioned from an old tablecloth.

“I wasn’t going to be anything for Halloween,” he muttered. “My mom just wanted me to be cute.”

Ramus has succumbed to his mother’s creative Halloween streak before, having been cast as Barney and the Tasmanian Devil in the past.

Joe admits to watching an occasional episode of “SpongeBob SquarePants,” but he’s not a fanatic like some of the kids he’s likely to meet tonight.

“This is the ultimate neighborhood to dress up,” Wyckoff’s boyfriend, Tim Daugherty, said.

Everyone, that is, except Daugherty.

“I’m going to be the designated driver,” he said. “I’d put the costume on if I had to. There’s a lot of things I’d do for candy.”

Getting some of the sweet stuff tonight will be easy, Wyckoff believes.

“I’m gonna get tons of candy this year, for sure.”


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