It’s the Halloween Season, with events planned for a week before the holiday itself. Here’s a list to help you keep it all straight. We’ve included two “Rocky Horror Picture Show” events for much older kids (the film is rated R and has, ah, a very adult theme.)
[UPDATE: At the bottom of this list is a list of safety tips published (pretty early) by Norwalk Police on Facebook.]
[Correction: The children’s Storytime event at Darien Library takes place Thursday, not Tuesday.]
Most events are in Darien (we’ve added some extra events, sometimes very much like the events in Darien, in case you’ve got a schedule conflict):
Halloween Hayride — Stew Leonard’s in Norwalk — 3 to 8 p.m., Monday through Friday; 9 a.m. to 8 p.m. weekends — “Prior to picking the perfect pumpkin, families can hop on Stew’s Halloween Hayride Spectacular which features entertaining displays created by Stew Leonard’s team members. The Halloween Hayride is available only at the Norwalk Stew Leonard’s location.”
SATURDAY, Oct. 24
Halloween Workshop for Kids at Darien Arts Center — 2 to 3:30 p.m. — The Darien Arts Center is offering a crafty Halloween workshop, “Halloween Fun for Your Little One,” for ages 5 and up. Participants will take home finished projects in time to decorate for Halloween. Cost: $30.
Do the Time Warp Again at “‘Rocky Horror’ Experience” Saturday at Maritime Aquarium — OK, this one’s for MUCH older kids — Maritime Aquarium in Norwalk — Dress up and take part in “The ‘Rocky Horror’ Experience” on Sat., Oct. 24 at The Maritime Aquarium at Norwalk. A live cast will act out the story of “The Rocky Horror Picture Show” on a stage in the theater while the campy cult-classic film plays on the giant screen above. Audience members are encouraged to dress as their favorite characters, and to bring such appropriate items as rubber gloves, newspapers, umbrellas, flashlights and party horns. “Prop bags” containing rice, toast, newspaper, playing cards and a “Time Warp” dance instruction sheet will be available for $4 at the door. But please: no throwing anything at the Aquarium’s unique screen! Tickets: $18 ($15 for Aquarium members). Advance ticket purchases are strongly recommended and available online now or by calling (203) 852-0700, ext. 2206.
SUNDAY, Oct. 25
Rowayton Community Association Halloween Celebration — Rowayton Community Center — 1 p.m. — “Come in costume to explore the hay maze, pet the animals, take a pony ride, parade with your peers, and enter into the Haunted House if you dare… Sunday, October 25th from 1:00-4:00pm at the Rowayton Community Center. Volunteers are needed at 9:00am to set up the hay maze. Kids who want to work in the Haunted House should come at 12:00 noon. The RCA is looking for both adults and children to help with this event. Please contact Peter Gatt (838-7226) to lend a hand.”
New Canaan Halloween Parade — noon to 2 p.m. — “One of New Canaan’s most popular events is the Annual Halloween Parade. Leading the parade will be the Old Faithful Antique Fire Truck and the cast of NCHS’s Production of You’re a Good Man, Charlie Brown. This event is sponsored by the New Canaan Chamber of Commerce. Ghosts, goblins, fairy princesses, superheroes, children of all ages and their dogs are invited to participate. Grandparents and residents are invited to cheer on the marchers and take lots of pictures of the various, sometimes wholly original, characters.”
Trick or Treat at Stamford Museum & Nature Center’s Heckscher Farm — “Don your Halloween costume and head up to Heckscher Farm to trick or treat with your favorite farm friends! Make your first stop at the otter pond to get your first clue. Follow the clues to find the five “trick or treat” stations. Then, stop by Overbrook for “Ick Fest” to get slimy with our slime table, visit live reptiles and bugs, and create crafts around some of our favorite Halloween critters. Don’t forget your treat bag! Members: Free | Non-Members: Free with gate admission.” Stamford Nature Center adult admission is $10, children’s admission is $5.
Children’s Halloween Art Party — Silvermine Arts Center in New Canaan — 2 to 4 p.m. — “Come join in some Halloween fun! The party includes funky mask making, clay pumpkin painting, costume parade, spooky punch and gooey treats, Halloween movie, ghostly goody bags and lots of ghoulish fun! Costumes optional. Children of all ages welcome but must be accompanied by an adult. Members: $12; Non-Members: $15. To register: Call the school office at 203-966-6668 extension 2.”
Halloween Hoot & Howl at Darien Nature Center — 4 to 6 p.m. — $5 at the door, no registration necessary — Darien Nature Center’s “Halloween Hoot and Howl” event on Sunday includes a magic show, hay rides, refreshments (including s’mores), crafts, a Fall hike, story telling, live animals, crafts and face painting.
Three Levels of Scary at Post 53 Haunted House — 2 to 4 p.m. — Three different levels of fright are offered for children of all ages at Darien EMS-Post 53’s haunted house on Sunday. Once again, the Halloween event will have games, treats and crafts for all. There’s something for parents and other members of the community as well at the annual event: It’s also an open house for the community, featuring ambulance tours and the opportunity to learn hands-only CPR. Free (donations welcome).
MONDAY, Oct. 26
Pumpkin Crafts — Darien Library — 4 p.m. — Pumpkin Crafts Celebrate the spookiest holiday by getting crafty at the library. Monday, Oct. 26 at 4 p.m. Ages 3 and up Open – no registration necessary.
Haunted Connecticut (author talk) — Darien Library — 7 p.m. — For MUCH older kids — From the White Lady who supposedly roams Union Cemetery, to the departed soul of Ernie, the keeper, who haunts the New London Ledge Lighthouse, to the spirits that possibly roam the former home of Mark Twain, hear stories of about some of Connecticut’s best-known ghosts and spirits. Author and editor Ray Bendici is the content manager of Connecticut Magazine as well as one of the founders of Damned Connecticut, a website devoted to everything weird and unusual in the state, from supposedly haunted destinations to weird legends to curious events.
WEDNESDAY, Oct. 28
Halloween Party for Darien Pre-Schoolers at DHS — 3 to 4:30 p.m. — “Darien High School Save the Children’s Club (formerly Invisible Children) is once again holding their Halloween event for the preschoolers of the Darien Community on school grounds,” according to an announcement sent out by the group.
Pumpkin Stroll at the Potting Shed — Rowayton — 6 to 7 p.m. — “Join us for this always fun event – the parade of pumpkins created at the Carvathon will be ready for viewing. […] Enjoy snacks and see all the delightful creepy creations!”
THURSDAY, Oct. 29
Halloween-inspired Story Time — 10:30 to 11 a.m. — Darien Library — Join the children’s librarians for drop-in [no registration required], Halloween inspired storytime. Free. — (This is according to the All About Darien website. We couldn’t confirm online. [Correction: This takes place Thursday, not Tuesday as we originally reported.]
Rocky Horror Picture Show — again, this is for MUCH older kids — Avon Theater — 8:30 p.m. (100-minute movie) — “Costumes encouraged!! An outrageous assemblage of the most stereotyped science fiction movies, Marvel comics, Frankie Avalon / Annette Funicello outings and rock ‘n’ roll of every vintage. Running through the story is the sexual confusion of two middle American “Ike Age” kids confronted by the complications of the decadent morality of the 70’s, represented in the person of the mad “doctor” Frank N Furter, a transvestite from the planet Transexual in the galaxy of Transylvania.” According to the Hartford Courant: “No rice, water guns or water sprayers of any kind are allowed.” — Nonmembers: $12, Members: $7, Students/Seniors, $9.
FRIDAY, Oct. 30
Annual Halloween Parade with Amazing Andy — we’re not sure yet what times this begins and ends — Meet downtown at the parking lot next to the Darien Fire Station — “Our parade is a colorful tradition! Dress up your little ones and bring a bag for trick or treating at the doors of local merchants along the way to Tilley Pond. Then join us for snacks and a special show with our favorite magician “The Amazing Andy.” His magical talents will amaze you and your child, and his wonderful antics, humor and sleight of hand will keep even the youngest magic enthusiasts entertained. Meet at the parking lot next to the Darien Fire Station opposite Post Corner Pizza. Special price: $5 per child.”
Trunk or Treat for Kids this Halloween — Noroton Presbyterian Church parking lot — 4:30 to 6:30 p.m. — Join in Trunk or Treat, a free, annual family event: Bring candy, kids in costumes and even decorated cars to the Noroton Presbyterian Church’s newly paved/designed parking lot on Oct. 30 from 4:30 to 6:30 p.m. There will be free goodie bags for all children.
Scary Stories to Chill Your Bones (for Ages 8 & up) — Tilley Pond Park — 6 p.m. — Darien librarians are running this event: “Meet us in Tilley Pond Park for spooky storytelling. Ages 8 and up. Open – no registration necessary.”
Darien YMCA Community Halloween Party — 6:30 to 8 p.m. — Darien YMCA — The Annual Darien YMCA Community Halloween Party will take place from 6:30-8 p.m. on Friday, Oct. 30. No cost to attend, open to the community (not just members of the YMCA).
HALLOWEEN, SATURDAY, Oct. 31
Rowayton Library Monster Dash — 9 a.m. — Rowayton’s Halloween run. Have a frighteningly good time at this devilish dash. Proceeds to benefit the Rowayton Library. Adult Tickets: $35. Tickets for kids ages 10 and up: $20. Click here to register!Event registration begins at 8:15 a.m. The 5K run begins at 9 a.m.; 1-Mile Fun Run/Walk to follow. Children ages 9 and under run/walk for FREE
Free Ice Cream at Stew Leonard’s in Norwalk — “On Halloween day all children who come to Stew Leonard’s in costume to trick-or-treat will receive a free ice cream cone. Stew’s Ice Cream Parlor is featuring pumpkin fudge and pumpkin ice cream throughout the Halloween season.”
Costumed Kids Get Free Admission to Maritime ‘Aqua-Scarium’ on Halloween — You can bring your kid in his or her Halloween costume to the Maritime Aquarium on Halloween and do some safe trick-or-treating in the aquarium, which will be transformed into the “Aqua-Scarium.” And it won’t cost any more than a normal aquarium visit — it will cost less. Your visit will be discounted, with each kid from 3 to 12 years old getting in free for each paying adult that accompanies the child. Kids can also meet and pose with Spider-Man.
Monster Mash — Stepping Stones Museum for Children in Norwalk — 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. — “This year our not-so-scary, silly, fun, favorite Halloween event is during the day! Dress up in your favorite costumes as you enjoy games, face-painting and a treasure hunt. We can even help you prepare for trick-or-treating as you create masks, decorate pumpkins and design your own tote bag for collecting all of your treats! Monster Mash is Free with museum admission. There is a $3 material fee on select activities.
Storybook Pumpkin Contest — Stepping Stones Museum for Children in Norwalk — noon to 1 p.m. (but see earlier event below in this listing) — “Bring a pumpkin decorated like a storybook character to the museum for a chance to get a gift card! Don’t have a pumpkin? Participate in our pumpkin decorating activity ($3 material fee required) here at the museum from 10:30 – 11:30 a.m.
HALLOWEEN SAFETY TIPS
These tips were published by Norwalk Police on Facebook:
• Cross the street at corners, using traffic signals and crosswalks.
• Look left, right and left again when crossing and keep looking as you cross.
• Put electronic devices down and keep heads up and walk, don’t run, across the street.
• Teach children to make eye contact with drivers before crossing in front of them.
• Always walk on sidewalks or paths. If there are no sidewalks, walk facing traffic as far to the left as possible. Children should walk on direct routes with the fewest street crossings.
• Watch for cars that are turning or backing up. Teach children to never dart out into the street or cross between parked cars.
Trick or Treat With an Adult
• Children under the age of 12 should not be alone at night without adult supervision. If kids are mature enough to be out without supervision, they should stick to familiar areas that are well lit and trick-or-treat in groups.
Keep Costumes Both Creative and Safe
• Decorate costumes and bags with reflective tape or stickers and, if possible, choose light colors.
• Choose face paint and makeup whenever possible instead of masks, which can obstruct a child’s vision.
• Have kids carry glow sticks or flashlights to help them see and be seen by drivers.
• When selecting a costume, make sure it is the right size to prevent trips and falls.
Drive Extra Safely on Halloween
• Slow down and be especially alert in residential neighborhoods. Children are excited on Halloween and may move in unpredictable ways.
• Take extra time to look for kids at intersections, on medians and on curbs.
• Enter and exit driveways and alleys slowly and carefully.
• Eliminate any distractions inside your car so you can concentrate on the road and your surroundings.
• Drive slowly, anticipate heavy pedestrian traffic and turn your headlights on earlier in the day to spot children from greater distances.
• Popular trick-or-treating hours are 5:30 p.m. to 9:30 p.m. so be especially alert for kids during those hours.