Tina Hubert gets a little crazy at Halloween.
She turns into a psycho doll, a pumpkin patch or the Cat in the Hat from Dr. Seuss.
Not what you might expect from the accomplished and respected executive director of Six Mile Regional Library District in Granite City.
“She really goes all out,” said Juliette Douglas, the library’s assistant director.
Tina, 55, makes her own costumes. One of her most original ideas was being a tornado. She wrapped herself in dark gray tulle and attached tiny figurines such as cows, cars and Mrs. Gulch on a bicycle from “The Wizard of Oz.” They looked like they were swirling in the wind.
Another year, Tina was Goddess Athena from Greek mythology. She wore a white chiton or tunic with gold accents and carried a stuffed owl.
“My legal name is Athena,” she said. “So I thought it only right that I dress as her at least once in my life.”
I take off work on the high holy holiday so I can prepare for the neighborhood kids knocking on the door.
Tina Hubert on her Halloween habit
Tina also jazzes up Halloween costumes with purple prescription contact lenses designed for actors.
“They change the look of your eyes,” she said. “The ones I bought were called ‘Lestat’ from Anne Rice’s book ‘Interview with the Vampire.’ They’re like vampire eyes.”
October is Tina’s favorite month, so it’s appropriate that the Illinois Library Association is recognizing her as Librarian of the Year on Oct. 18 during its annual conference.
Juliette nominated her for the award. Six Mile board member Mary Jo Akeman is another fan of the long-time librarian.
“She’s a get-it-done type of person,” Mary Jo said.
Tina lives in Pontoon Beach with her husband, Michael, and their two cats, Buddy and Layla.
The couple don’t throw many Halloween house parties anymore. Tina mainly dresses up for her bunco group and trick-or-treaters.
“I take off work on the high holy holiday so I can prepare for the neighborhood kids knocking on the door,” she said.
This year’s Halloween costume is still a secret, but Tina is coordinating with her sister, Cindy Ramey, of Pontoon Beach, which they often did as girls.
One year, they were Raggedy Ann and Andy dolls. Mom Dorothy Anderson made the costumes, including wigs out of red yarn.
“She also made some of our regular clothes, and she made some of her own clothes, and you would have never known it,” Tina said. “You would have thought they came from Famous-Barr. She was a real seamstress.”
Tina’s favorite Halloween books
“Big Pumpkin” by Erica Silverman
“The Little Old Lady Who Was Not Afraid of Anything” by Linda Williams
“Guess What?” by Mem Fox
“The Ghost-Eye Tree” by Bill Martin Jr. and John Archambault
“Wicked Jack” adapted by Connie Nordhielm Wooldridge
“The Haunted House Party” by Barry Louis Polisar
“Scary Stories to Tell in the Dark” retold by Alvin Schwartz
“The Halloween Tree” by Ray Bradbury
“The October Country” by Ray Bradbury (“The Lake” is favorite short story)
“The Haunting of Hill House” by Shirley Jackson