Halloween Activities Will Give Parents and Kids a Frightfully Good Time

By By April Hiselt

By April Hiselt

Although Halloween isn’t for another week, some families may want to grab their boys and ghouls and start celebrating early.

Or, some families may want to participate in alternative Halloween activities instead of braving the freezing cold temperatures and taking their kids trick-or-treating (although, that’s fun too).

Either way, Salt Lake City has several Halloween activities for kids and their parents.

“Boo at the Zoo” is one of these activities. On Oct. 27, from 10 a.m. until 2 p.m., the Hogle Zoo will be offering trick or-treating at the zoo. Children can come dressed in costumes and trick-or-treat at over 15 booths located throughout the zoo.

Zoo docents will also be on the grounds with some creatures for the children to enjoy.

“This is a chance for the kids to get up close and personal with some creepy crawly creatures,” said Stacy Phillips, Marketing and Public Relations Manager for the Hogle Zoo.

“There will be snakes, spiders and other animals for the children to see,” she said.

The zoo will also be holding a craft carnival for 50 cents per ticket.

“There will be booths where the children can make masks, decorate cupcakes, create Halloween bracelets, get a temporary tattoo?all types of crafty things,” said Phillips. Each booth costs between one and five tickets, and all proceeds go to the Hogle Zoo.

Admission to the zoo is $7 for adults and $5 for children 3 to 12. There is a coupon for a dollar off general admission on the Hogle Zoo Web site at www.hoglezoo.org.

“The Great Pumpkin Party” held at The Children’s Museum of Utah is also a great family event. This event will be held on Friday, Oct. 26 from 4 p.m. to 8 p.m. Children are invited to come in costume for the costume contest.

Activities include a magic show, face painting, mask making, science experiments and story reading. There will also be activities for toddlers.

“Parents will love this event because this is a fright-free activity,” said Dave Clifton, Communication Manager for The Children’s Museum of Utah.

“This is an inexpensive activity within the museum for kids and parents to come and have some fun,” he said.

There will also be a silent auction during the evening.

“Parents can bid on items like Southwest airline tickets, car alarm systems and many other items,” Clifton said. All benefits from the auction will go directly to The Children’s Museum.

Tickets are $5 for non museum members if purchased in advance by calling 328-3383. Tickets purchased at the door are $6 for children 1 and older.

Tracy Aviary’s “Halloween Hoot” is another safe trick-or treat alternative. On October 27 from 12 p.m. to 3 p.m. the Aviary will be filled with Halloween fun.

The cost for the event is $3 for all ages. Children 12 and under can enter the costume contest or they can attempt the “Hoot Like An Owl” contest.

Families can enjoy face painting, Halloween crafts, or they can choose to have their picture taken (or bring a camera and take your own photo) with the Tracy Aviary mascot, Tracy Toucan, and a real-live owl. The children will also receive candy by doing several, fun activities at the Aviary.

“We have the children participate in an activity and then get tons of candy,” said Holly Seitz, Public Relations Director for the Tracy Aviary. “This way, the kids are actually learning something and then getting candy.”

The Aviary will also be offering a special Halloween animal presentation.

“There are a lot of myths and misconceptions about certain animals,? Seitz said. “We will have bats, crows, vultures, owls and other animals to try to teach the children and dispel some of those myths.”

The “Garden After Dark” at the Red Butte Garden is also a family favorite.

“This is a kinder, gentler Halloween experience,? said Cynthia Lyman, Communications Manager for the Red Butte Garden.

“It is a nice way to celebrate the harvest and to enjoy the beauty of the Garden,” she said.

The Garden will be open on Monday, Thursday, Friday and Saturday nights through Oct. 29 from 6:30 to 9:30 p.m.

Tickets are $6 for adults and $4 for seniors and children. There will be creepy crafts, a costume parade, an opportunity to make a scarecrow and a puppet show.

There will also be storytelling around a campfire presented by the Utah Storytellers Guild.

If you?re looking for something with a little farm flair, try the Historic Wheeler Farm’s, “Scarecrow Masquerade,? taking place during the last two Saturdays of the month (Oct. 20 and 27).

Tickets are $4 for children 12 and under and $5 for adults. For this price, each person gets to take a wagon ride around the farm, create Halloween decorations and pick their very own pumpkin from the garden.

Other fun Farm events include creating your own scarecrow and feeding the ducks.

If you will be making a scarecrow, be sure to bring some old pants, shirts, hats and a pillowcase for the head?the Farm will provide the rest. If feeding the ducks, be sure to bring some bread.

Whatever you chose to do, it is a great time to enjoy the fall leaves and the beautiful scenery “down on the farm.?

So with these activities to keep the kids busy?and plenty of cavity-preventing toothpaste on hand?Halloween can be fun for even the busiest of student families. Just remember?you may want to hire a baby sitter to deal with the sugar-high afterward!

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