Words by Marissa Bergen.
There is an unmistakable chill in the air and the sky is getting darker earlier. Though many of us associate these changes with the coming of fall, those of us who prefer to embrace our dark sides know that this means Halloween is coming. If you have your own group of ghouls, ghosts, and goblins who are looking forward to celebrating this season, West Michigan has a host of activities for you to enjoy. Here are just a few we recommend.
South Haven KOA Halloween Weekends: This South Haven campground is promising exciting weekends as October 5, 6 and 12-14 will offer an array of Spooktacular activities like Halloween games, haunted hayrides, trick or treating, costumes, games, crafts and more. A similar event will be taking place at the Coloma St. Joseph KOA October 12-14.
Nightmare on Broad Street: Taking place on October 13 from 7-11 PM, this event will serve as a fundraiser to the event center. Drinks will be served and there will also be a costume contest, tarot card reading, henna tattoo artists, an art exhibition and a silent auction.
Monster Mash Street Bash: The first event of its kind, Mackinaw City will be shutting down Central Ave on October 13 from 1-10 PM. The Street Bash will feature live music, a weenie roast, costumes, dances, hay rides and more.
Capri Drive-In Holiday Fun: Coldwater County’s Capri Drive-In is always a great place to enjoy movies and the old school drive-in experience. On October 20, it will be holding a costume contest as well as discounted admission to the feature films being shown.
Zoo Goes Boo at the John Ball Zoo: This annual event will be taking place October 19-21 and 26-28 from 10 AM to 3 PM. Kids are encouraged to show up in costumes and bring their bags to enjoy the treats handed out by zoo attendants. Members should also mark their calendars for the special members-only Monster Mash party that will be taking place on Thursday, October 18 from 5-7:30 PM.
Ionia’s Autumn Celebration and Chili Dawg Challenge: Another annual event, families can join in the festivities which will include a chili dawg eating contest, a children’s costume contest, a pet costume contest, carnival games, trick or treating and more. The celebration takes place on October 25 from 4:00 – 7:30 PM.
West Michigan Beer Tours’ Halloween Beer Tour: West Michigan is known for its excellent brews and provides beer tours year round. On October 26, the company will be offering a beer tour that might be more like a cross between a beer tour and a haunted hayride! Try seasonal fall flavors mixed in with some scary surprises like a trip to the Psycho Ward & Nightmares, one of Kalamazoo’s best-haunted attractions and Plainwell’s Old Mill Brewpub which is said to be inhabited by a couple of ghosts!
Saugatuck’s Annual Halloween Kids & Pet Parade: Always a fun event, this year’s parade is taking place on October 27 at 3:30. There will be a costume party at 3:30 and the parade begins at 4.
Shanty Creek Resorts Annual Halloween Party: This year’s event will be taking place on October 27 at 7:30 PM and October 28 at 12 PM. It will be 80’s and 90’s themed and include a dance party and costume contest. Live music will be featured as well.
Firekeepers Casino Hotel Halloween Celebration: Taking place on October 27 from 5-10 PM, those who enter in this costume contest will be in the running to win thousands of dollars in red-hot credits from the casino. You must be a member to enter!
Grand Rapids Ballet Junior Company Spooktacular: With four performances on Oct. 26 at 7:30 PM, Oct. 27 at 2 and 7:30 PM and Oct. 28 at 2 PM, you have plenty of chances to join in on the fun. The Junior company’s performance will be taking place at the Peter Martin Wege Theatre and will provide creepy, crawly fun for the whole family. Costumes encouraged!
Tibbets Opera House Monster Fest 3: Taking place on October 27 and timed to start right before the Halloween Parade and conclude after it ends, this event will bring a classic triple feature of horror to West Michigan guests. Start off with Abbott and Costello Meet Frankenstein. Then, after the parade, come back to enjoy Monster on the Campus and The Mole People. This year, the theater will be offering shirts to commemorate the Monster Fest that will be available for purchase.
The Portage Point Resort Halloween Party: The Portage Point Resort is always a great place to go for holiday fun. This year’s event will be taking place on October 27 and will include a trip through the haunted hotel, food and live entertainment.
Run/ Walk in Marquette: Not only is this a great way to work off some of those Halloween treats, it’s also a terrific way to celebrate the season. Runners will have an opportunity to win a ‘treat’ at the turnaround and guests are encouraged to dress up for a chance to win a prize in the Halloween contest. There will be an after party featuring food and refreshments and participants will be given Trick or Trot swag.
Drummond Island and Resort Halloween Package: Make a weekend of your Halloween fun when participating in the Hall-O-Wheelin’ Night Ride Package. This includes overnight accommodations from October 27-28, a day pass at the local ORV park and a barbecue dinner for two. Guests can also enjoy the costume contest, cornhole, bonfire and live music that will be provided.
If you are looking forward to the Halloween season, West Michigan gives you plenty of opportunities to celebrate. From community events to downright scary experiences, there is sure to be something for everyone. What will you be adding to your calendar this Halloween?
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