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A burnt orange Halloween

Austin revelers take in UT game along with haunted fun

Tony Plohetski
tplohetski@statesman.com

Kristopher Pruner faced a tough wardrobe choice Saturday night: his favorite burnt-orange University of Texas shirt or an eye-grabbing Halloween costume.

He showed up at a downtown sports bar as the tooth fairy.

"I kind of feel guilty" about the lack of Longhorn garb, said Pruner, who laughed with friends and watched the game on big-screen televisions at Champions on East Fourth Street. "But I figured the tooth fairy would get some laughs, and it has."

Football fandom met Halloween horror Saturday as hundreds of Longhorn fans poured into Austin nightclubs, bars and restaurants to watch the Texas-Oklahoma State game and celebrate the haunted holiday.

It is the first time in the history of Longhorn football that the team has played on Halloween night.

Many, including Pruner, who graduated from UT in December and works as a transportation engineer in Dallas, watched the game in creative or cobbled-together costumes. Others stuck to their traditional Longhorn jerseys and shirts.

The simultaneous events provided a unique challenge for some, who faced the choice between trick-or-treating or watching the game.

Charlie Shaw, 13, of Dallas came to town with his parents to visit his sister, a UT student, but had misgivings.

"All of my friends wanted to go do stuff," he said. "I wanted to go trick-or-treating and watch horror movies and hang out with my friends."

But Charlie, who was with his family at Champions, said he was happy with his choice.

"I just like being with everyone and having fun," he said. "They get really into it."

Along Sixth Street, there were few signs of the ongoing game.

Roger Moppin of Austin walked through the entertainment district wearing a UT shirt and said he was taking a halftime break from all-evening game watching. He planned to find a television to watch the game's ending.

But Liz Hirst and her family, dressed as characters from "The Wizard of Oz," said their priority was celebrating Halloween.

"We're Aggie fans," she said with a laugh.

Back at Champions, Jessie Cisneros watched the game with several family members; he was dressed as Night Owl from the movie "Watchmen."

After the game, he planned to head out to Sixth Street, and, later, to a friend's party.

"It will be an all-night event," he said. "Or early morning, I guess."

tplohetski@statesman.com; 445-3605