Halloween season has arrived.
In honor of full moons, horror movies and Halloween parties, here is a sampling of some of the best events to celebrate the occasion. There’s a little something for everyone.
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👻SPOOKY GARDEN CELEBRATION
Have a great afternoon outdoors with games, crafts, music and a not-so-spooky trick-or-treats trail in the formal gardens and on the garden green. Magic, refreshments, face painting and animal ambassadors are also part of the free fun. As the sun sets, the action shifts to the Children’s Garden with more crafts and games, a storyteller, marshmallow roast and great photo opportunities. Sponsored in part by the Wegerzyn Gardens Foundation.
When: Friday, Oct. 25, 3-7 p.m.
Where: Wegerzyn Gardens MetroPark, 1301 E. Siebenthaler Ave., Dayton
More info: Facebook
🎃PUMPKIN GLOW AT HOBSON FREEDOM PARK
Hobson Freedom Park will be filled with the flickering glow of 2,000 pumpkins. Enjoy a night walk in search of funny faces, cute animals and scary creatures at this family-friendly event. Food available will include hamburgers, hot dogs, kettle corn, cider and other drinks. Kids can trunk-or-treat. No costume? Check out a blacklight area for glow-in-the-dark fun.
When: Friday and Saturday, Oct. 25-26, 7-10 p.m.
Where: Hobson Freedom Park, 2910 Trebein Road, Fairborn
Cost: Admission is free but donations will be accepted
👻HAUNTFEST ON FIFTH
Hard to believe, but Hauntfest on 5th is now on its 34th year. Costumed revelers will take over the Oregon District for a night filled with fun, drinks and costume contests. Must be 18 to enter and 21 to drink.
When: 7 p.m.-1 a.m. Saturday, Oct. 26
Where: Oregon District along East Fifth Street in Dayton
Cost: $10 in advance or $15 at the gate. Tickets will be available on Oct. 1.
🚴♀️TOMFOOLERY OUTDOORS SPOOKY BREW BIKE TOUR
Costumes, craft beer and bikes! This Saturday, put on your best costume and take a bike ride and Dayton pub tour. Decorate your bike, too! Here’s the schedule:
12:30-12:50 pm: Register at Dayton Beer Company in downtown Dayton.
1 p.m. - Jimmy's Ladder 11
2 p.m. - Fifth Street Brew Pub
3 p..m - DK Effect
4 p.m. - Century Bar
5 - 6 p.m. - Dayton Beer Company Pizza Party
When: Saturday, Oct. 26, 12:30-5 p.m.
Where: Beginning at Dayton Beer Company, 41 Madison St., Dayton
Cost: $15 includes Pizza Party and first pint at Dayton Beer Company. Please register in advance.
Info: Facebook | Learn more about the Spooky Brew Bike Tour by contacting Darlene Johnson at 937-304-9855
🚴♀️MIKE’S BIKE PARK HALLOWEEN LOCK-IN
Mike’s Bike Park will hold a Halloween Lock-In and All-Night Ride. Attendees will be able to ride the bike park all night long, socialize, and have a bite. Pizza will be provided to attendees while supplies last. Costumes are not required, but they are encouraged. At the stroke of midnight there will be a costume contest. All ages are welcome, but children 12 and under require parental accompaniment.
When: 10 p.m. Saturday, Oct. 26, through 7 a.m. Sunday, Oct. 27
Where: Mike’s Bike Park, 1300 E. First Street, Dayton
Cost: $20 in advance or $25 at the door. Purchase tickets here.
🎃HARVEST HOLIDAY WEEKEND AT THE MARKET
This family-friendly weekend series will offer lots of “spook-tacular” activities for guests of any age. The schedule:
Pumpkin Decorating, 10 a.m.-1 p.m.:
•In the Pavilion, the Market will host a pumpkin decorating workshop. Pumpkins and supplies will be provided free of charge.
Costume Parade, 11 a.m.-2 p.m.:
• March through the Market and show off your favorite Halloween costume. Trick-or-treat at the vendor booths.
Kids Scavenger Hunt, 11 a.m.-2 p.m.:
• Stop by the Market office, located at the West end of the building, to pick up a child-friendly scavenger hunt sheet. While you're touring the Market, make sure to keep your eyes peeled and write down where you find each item! Once finished, stop back by the office to turn in your sheet and collect a prize.
Market Games Galore, 11 a.m.-2 p.m.:
• Also located in the Pavilion, some festive games to get you in the autumn spirit. Try a child-friendly bean bag toss to win Market prizes or stop by the Pumpkin Guessing Game booth to see if you can correctly identify the weight of a giant pumpkin. The patron who guesses the closest weight to the actual size of the giant pumpkin at the Pumpkin Guessing Game will win a 2nd Street Market goodie basket.
When: Saturday, Oct. 26-Sunday, Oct. 27
Where: 2nd Street Market, 600 E. 2nd St., Dayton
This free family event includes story time, games, crafts, refreshments, a storybook obstacle course, a character hunt and a skit by the Boo Bash Players. Children are encouraged to dress as their favorite storybook character.
When: Saturday, Oct. 26, 1-4 p.m.
Where: Troy-Hayner Cultural Center, 301 W. Main St., Troy
More info: Facebook
🤡POSER HALLOWEEN WELLS-OH_MANIA!
Celebrate Halloween, rock, wrestling, comedy and the birthday of Oh Wells the Fighting Clown with friends, beverages, and food truck events. All ages, but some PG-13 content. Featuring live music from DipSpit, Legbone and Duderus and food by the Twisted Taco Truck.
When: Saturday, Oct. 26, at 8 p.m.
Where: Yellow Cab Tavern, 700 E. 4th St., Dayton
Cost: $5 suggested donation
More info: Facebook
🎃HALLOWEEN HAPPENING AT LOST CREEK RESERVE
Enjoy a stroll along a jack-o-lantern trail carved by local volunteers and students. Dress in your favorite Halloween costume and enjoy cider and donut holes. The Lost Creek Corn Maze will also be open for a flashlight adventure.
When: Saturday, Oct. 26, 8-10 p.m.
Where: Lost Creek Reserve, 2645 E. State Route 41, Troy
Cost: Free entry to Halloween Happening. The cost for the corn maze is $5 ages 11 and older and $3 ages 3-10.
🎃STODDARD AVENUE PUMPKIN GLOW
One of Dayton’s most beloved traditions continues on the hill behind the Greek Orthodox Church in the historic Grafton Hill neighborhood. The family-friendly event features more than 1,000 intricately carved jack-o’-lanterns carved by volunteers.
When: 6-10 p.m. Oct. 28-29, 2019.
Where: Stoddard Avenue, Dayton
Info: Event Facebook page
>> PHOTOS: Stoddard Avenue Pumpkin Glow 2018
🎃LILY’S BISTRO GREAT PUMPKIN FEST
Lily’s Bistro will offer a special menu full of dishes, drinks, cocktails and beer as part of the first annual Great Pumpkin Fest. During lunch and dinner hours for the week, a special changing menu of pumpkin soup, pumpkin fritters, pumpkin chili, pumpkin ravioli and more, will be paired from the bar with favorite pumpkin beers and inventive pumpkin cocktails.
When: Oct. 31 through Nov. 2
Where: Lily’s Bistro, 329 E. Fifth St., Dayton
Cost: Prices vary. Make reservations in advance here.
The Yellow Cab Tavern will host Wabs-O-Ween with performances from Cincinnati's Buffalo Wabs & The Price Hill Hustle, along with local support from Amber Hargett and The American Landscape.
When: Thursday, Oct. 31, from 7-11 p.m.
Where: Yellow Cab Tavern, 700 E. 4th St., Dayton
Cost: Tickets are $10 in advance and $15 at the door. Tickets are available here.
💀ALL HALLOW TIDE AND DAY OF THE DEAD AT EL MESON
Celebrate the traditional Latin Holidays of All Hallow Tide at El Meson with small plate pairings during dinner service on Oct. 31-Nov. 2 and a special Day of the Dead event on Nov. 2. For All Hallow Tide on October 31 through November 2 during dinner hours from 4:30-8:30pm, guests will be treated to a complimentary tapas plate with their first purchase of tequila or margarita. Then on Saturday, Nov. 2, El Meson will be hosting a special Day of the Dead spirits pairing with a margarita, three varieties of tequila, and three tacos. The Nov. 2 event will include free face painting.
When: Oct. 31-Nov. 2
Where: El Meson, 903 E. Dixie Drive, West Carrollton
Cost: For the Nov. 2 event, tickets are $45, plus tax and tip and are available at http://elmeson.net/day-of-the-dead/
👻LEWISBURG HAUNTED CAVE
What’s more terrifying than a real cave? More than a half mile of fright awaits you as you venture into this wicked attraction located 80 feet below ground in a Limestone Cave. Oh, and there are 30,000 live bats. The "Guinness Book of World Records" named the Lewisburg Haunted Cave the longest walk-through haunted house in 2010. There are also 500 feet of bridges to traverse if you want to have any hope of making it out alive.
4392 Swishers Mill Road, Lewisburg
Dates: Sept. 13-Oct. 26. The attraction is open from 7 p.m. to midnight Fridays and Saturdays, with extended hours on Saturdays in October opening at 6 p.m.
Cost: $19-23 (adults), $8 (children 10 and under)/ Historic wagon rides are $10 (adult), $5 (children)
😱LAND OF ILLUSION
Middletown’s premier scream park offers six haunted attractions in one setting. Of course, you’ll want to experience them all, and there’s plenty of food, drink, live entertainment, and places to sit down to let your heart recover. In the meantime, here are the Big Six:
Phobia: Land of Illusion’s most recent haunt plays on popular fears, whether they be spiders, bugs, or enclosed spaces.
Temple of Terror: Enter this temple, and you’ll be confronted by the angry souls of civilizations long dead.
Killer Klowns Haunted Maze: It’s not just the inhabitants you have to fear, but the dizzy tunnel and intricate mazes that might leave you trapped and paralyzed to the point where the homicidal clowns can take their time coming to get you.
Dr. Psycho’s Haunted Estate: Dr. Psycho liked to take his patients apart much more than putting them back together. Come inside and see the results, if you dare.
Zombie Sniper Patrol: Introduced just when “The Walking Dead” was gaining popularity, the Sniper Patrol lets you join a crack zombie-hunting unit aboard a U.S. military cargo truck and shoot zombies with lethal paintballs. For the first time this year, the sniper patrol will be included in the admission price.
Middletown Haunted Trail: This walking trail has gotten longer and changed themes several times over the years, making for a classic that never gets old.
When: Through Oct. 31, 8 a.m.-2 a.m., Fridays-Saturdays, 8:30 p.m.-11:30 p.m. Thursdays and Sundays
Where: 8762 Thomas Road, Middletown
Cost: $39.99 (general), $59.99 (fast pass)
More Info: www.landofillusion.com
😱 KINGS ISLAND HALLOWEEN HAUNT
This event was voted "Best Theme Park Halloween Event" in 2018 by USA TODAY. Kings Island will add more screams with the launch of the annual Halloween haunting that kicks off Sept. 20 and runs Fridays and Saturdays through Halloween. Guests will encounter evil creatures in the fog as you make your way through the park to ride your favorite coasters including The Beast, Banshee, Diamondback, Mystic Timbers and haunted mazes, scare zones and creepy shows.
New this year:
Shipwrecked: Explore a town full of ghoulish merchants, pirates and ruffians that would’ve scared Blackbeard himself.
Rivertown Reaping: Rivertown was a thriving mining and logging community until its population was wiped out by a plague. Do you dare interact with the ghosts who remain?
Zombie Mall: This is the only market where a good deal costs you a few body parts.
International Street Fear: Strange and mysterious creatures lurk in the shadows and leap out of every corner on this thoroughfare that transcends time and place, life and death.
When: Fridays and Saturdays, Sept. 20 through Oct. 26, from 6 p.m. to 1 a.m.
Where: Kings Island, 6300 Kings Island Drive, Mason
Cost: Tickets start at $33.99 online
😱RIVERSIDE JAYCEES HAUNTED CASTLE OF CARNAGE, TRAIL & MAZE
The Riverside Jaycees use their haunted attractions to give back to the community by helping young adults gain leadership skills. The thing that makes this haunted attraction so special is that it is run entirely by volunteers and proceeds support the non-profit’s community projects year-round.Details: This may be the most “boo” for your buck, with three attractions included for one reasonable price. If you make it through the Haunted Castle of Carnage, you’ll have the Trail of Terror to contend with. Still alive? Great. How about making your way through a 6,000 square foot haunted maze?
Where: 1213 Old Harshman Road, Riverside
When: Sept. 20-Oct. 27 (Fridays through Sundays)
Cost: $15 (general admission)
The curses just keep piling on this once-prosperous family farm. In addition to the usual Haunted Hayride and Forgotten Forest, Brimstone Haunt is proudly introducing “Psychosis” in 2019. Consisting of maze-like pathways, you’ll experience grotesque scenes of horror as you try to find your way out. If you can’t, well, note the attraction’s title.
For complete Brimstone newbies, the Haunted Hayride will take you through a light-scare, ghoul-infested cornfield, appropriate for families. The Forgotten Forest, full of unnatural creatures and doings, is a 20-minute “high intensity” walk (or a 10-minute stumble and run).
Where: 472 Brimstone Road, Wilmington
When: Sept. 27-Oct. 27, 7 p.m.-11:45 p.m.
More Info: www.brimstonehaunt.com