Despite the inclement weather in the nation's capital, the president and first lady Michelle Obama dispensed cookies, dried fruit and M&M's to the bundled-up children whose costumes included Batman, Harry Potter,a football player and a headless man.
"Look at this guy!" the president said. "It's a headless man -- terrible."
"Let's give out some candy," Obama, wearing gray slacks and a black fleece, said. "I know it's cold here, you guys doing alright? It's not ideal out here."
The White House grounds were decorated with pumpkins, gourds, hay bales and fake spider webs, and staff members wore costumes, including a cowboy, a bunny, a red chile pepper and a storm trooper.
The first lady wore an orange-and-black dress under a heavy black coat.
"Oh, she's freezing," she said as she briefly wrapped one girl in her coat.
The Obamas' daughters Malia or Sasha weren't spotted at the Halloween festivities.