Obamas welcome trick-or-treaters at annual White House Halloween event

US President Barack Obama (second from left) and First Lady Michelle Obama (left) laughing at the sight of a child dressed as the Pope at a Halloween event at the White House on Oct 30, 2015. President Obama and the First Lady welcomed local children
US President Barack Obama (second from left) and First Lady Michelle Obama (left) laughing at the sight of a child dressed as the Pope at a Halloween event at the White House on Oct 30, 2015. President Obama and the First Lady welcomed local children and children of military families to the annual event. PHOTO: EPA
US President Barack Obama attending a Halloween event at the White House on Oct 30, 2015.
US President Barack Obama attending a Halloween event at the White House on Oct 30, 2015.PHOTO: EPA
US President Barack Obama handing out treats to children for Halloween on the South Lawn of the White House on Oct 30, 2015.
US President Barack Obama handing out treats to children for Halloween on the South Lawn of the White House on Oct 30, 2015. PHOTO: AFP
US President Barack Obama reaching up to a performer as First Lady Michelle Obama looks on; during a Halloween event at the White House in Washington, DC, USA, on Oct 30, 2015. President Obama and the First Lady welcomed local children and children o
US President Barack Obama reaching up to a performer as First Lady Michelle Obama looks on; during a Halloween event at the White House in Washington, DC, USA, on Oct 30, 2015. President Obama and the First Lady welcomed local children and children of military families to trick-or-treat at the White House. Halloween is celebrated on Oct 31.PHOTO: EUROPEAN PRESSPHOTO AGENCY
Performers warming up for a Halloween event hosted by US President Barack Obama and First Lady Michelle Obama on the South Lawn of the White House on Oct 30, 2015.
Performers warming up for a Halloween event hosted by US President Barack Obama and First Lady Michelle Obama on the South Lawn of the White House on Oct 30, 2015. PHOTO: EPA
Acrobats warming up before a Halloween event hosted by US President Barack Obama and First Lady Michelle Obama on the South Lawn of the White House on Oct 30, 2015.
Acrobats warming up before a Halloween event hosted by US President Barack Obama and First Lady Michelle Obama on the South Lawn of the White House on Oct 30, 2015. PHOTO: EPA
Performers on stilts at the White House before a Halloween event hosted by US President Barack Obama and First Lady Michelle Obama on Oct 30, 2015.
Performers on stilts at the White House before a Halloween event hosted by US President Barack Obama and First Lady Michelle Obama on Oct 30, 2015. PHOTO: EPA

WASHINGTON (AFP) - The White House on Friday (Oct 30) welcomed flocks of costumed children to its annual Halloween event where United States President Barack Obama and his wife Michelle gave out candy and fruit bars.

A toddler dressed as the pope who was being pushed in a "popemobile" caught Mr Obama's attention as he and the first lady walked the South Lawn, baskets of goodies in hand for costumed trick-or-treaters.

The White House facade was partially coloured in black and thronged on either side by sinister figures on stilts and plenty of pumpkins, in an effort to turn the grounds into an "enchanted forest".

Meanwhile, acrobats, trapeze artists and jugglers entertained the day's guests, local school children and military children, who were dressed as firefighters, princesses and various other characters.

The first couple did not dress in costume, with Mr Obama wearing a brown cardigan over a gray collared shirt, and Mrs Obama in a multi-colored tee with black jacket.

More than 4,200 people were expected at the event, where White House M&M candies, cookies, kettle corn, fruit bars and baseball cards featuring the first dogs, Sunny and Bo, were distributed.

The evening also featured the White House's first-ever pavilion with La Catrina, the famous skull from Mexican folklore, which is associated with Dia De Los Muertos.