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State parks offer family Halloween activities over next two weekends
Weekly News article published: October 18, 2011 by the Central Office
MADISON – People looking for family friendly fun for Halloween can check out a variety of events scheduled over the next two weekends at Wisconsin state parks and other Department of Natural Resources properties.
From hayrides, to jack-o-lantern carving, to candle-lit trails with spooky encounters, more than a dozen Halloween and fall festival events are scheduled at parks across the state. Unless noted otherwise, events are free, but a state park admission sticker is needed for entrance to state parks. Here’s a list of Halloween and fall festival events:
At Halloween at Heritage Hill at Heritage Hill State Park in Green Bay, history and Halloween will come to life, as young costumed visitors will be able to trick or treat throughout 13 historic buildings. Other activities include: scary storytelling, s’mores, a Halloween craft, a shadow play, costume contest and many other family friendly activities. Safe family fun and the festive fall beauty of Heritage Hill will make for an experience to remember. Heritage Hill is managed by the Heritage Hill Foundation and different admission fees apply. Friday and Saturday nights Oct. 21-22 and 28-29. For information call (920) 448-5150.
Haunted Hay Rides at the MacKenzie Environmental Education Center in Poynette offer visitors fun and spooky hay rides around the MacKenzie Center property that will feature zombies, witches, graveyards, ghosts and more from 6:30 to 9:30 p.m. on Friday and Saturday Oct. 21 and 22. There is a $5 fee for adults and $3 for children age 3-8; which includes a campfire with snacks. For information call (608) 635-8105.
A Halloween Night Hike at Governor Nelson State Park near Waunakee is a self-guided, 1.5-mile hike along an illuminated trail on Saturday, Oct. 22. There will also be a bonfire by the beach. The event runs from 6-9 p.m. and is depending on the weather. For information call (608) 831-3005.
A Halloween Candlelight Hike at Harrington Beach State Park near Belgium, will dare visitors to hike the "Haunted Trail" or enjoy the ghost-free "Unhaunted Trail" From 6 to 9 p.m. on Saturday, Oct. 22. There will be a Best Costume Contest at 7 p.m. and Pumpkin Carving at 8 p.m. Sponsored by the Friends of Harrington Beach State Park. Meet at the Welcome Center. 6-9 p.m. For information call (262) 285-3015.
A Halloween Candlelight Mystery Hike at Mirror Lake State Park near Lake Delton will offer an easy 1-mile torch-lit mystery hike for kids of all ages to enjoy from 6:30 to 8:30 p.m. on Saturday, Oct. 22. Participants will follow clues and help rangers discover a Mystery Guest. It’s sponsored by the Friends of Mirror Lake State Park, who will offer food, beverages and goodies for sale. For information call (608) 254-2333.
A Blossomburg Cemetery Walk at Peninsula State Park in Fish Creek will allow visitors to discover the park’s storied past through biography and legend during a hike of the Blossomburg Cemetery, which is located within the park. The hike will be from 1 to 2 p.m. on Saturday, Oct. 22. On Saturday Oct. 29 from 1 to 2 p.m. Peninsula will offer Campfire with the Soil Witch at the Nature Center, where visitors can enjoy Halloween songs, spooky, and silly stories with the Soil Witch. Meet Clyde, her magic shovel, and learn about Peninsula geology. Then roast some stones (marshmallows) and sample dirt (chocolate and graham crackers). For information call (920) 854-5976
An Eco-Halloween Hike at the Richard Bong State Recreation Area near Kansasville on Saturday, Oct. 22, is a non-scary, family event with jack-o-lanterns, Halloween skits, campfires, refreshments, games and crafts. Visitors may arrive anytime between 6:30 and 8 p.m. to sign up for a hike. Hikes take about a half-hour. For information call (262) 878-5600
The Annual Pumpkin Walk/Haunted Hay Rides at Roche-A-Cri State Park near Adams-Friendship will celebrate fall from 3 to 9 p.m. Saturday, Oct. 22, with games for kids, a pumpkin and torch lit walk around the mound, non-haunted hayrides and haunted hayrides, and a naturalist presentation by the campfire. Food sales will be provided by the Friends of Roche-A-Cri. Park and ride the free shuttle bus from corner of Highway 13 and Czech Ave. Free park admission. 3-9 p.m. For information call (608) 565-2789
A Fright Hike at the Lapham Peak Unit of the Kettle Moraine State Forest near Delafield will offer dark and scary scenes performed along the family friendly 1-mile long hike (takes 20-40 minutes) from 6 to 9 p.m. Friday and Saturday, Oct. 28-29. Music, food, beverages and bonfire are available at the beginning or end of the hike. There is a $5 per vehicle fee to enter the park and $5 per person fee (6 years of age and older) to hike the "Fright Hike" trail loop. Entrance gates will close at 8:45 p.m. Adults with young children are strongly encouraged to use their own discretion. For information call (262) 646-3025
A Halloween torch-lit hike at Devil's Lake State Park near Baraboo will take visitors along the north shore of the popular lake leaving from the Rock Elm Shelter on Saturday, Oct. 29 from 6 to 9 p.m. Costumes are welcome, but not required. Following the hike there will be a campfire with treats sold by the Friends of Devil's Lake State Park and information about a Halloween favorite: bats. For information call (608) 356-8301 ext. 140.
“The Great Pumpkin Event” is part of a Fall Park Open House at High Cliff State Park near Sherwood on Saturday, Oct. 29. The event begins at 3 p.m. with a Kids’ Pumpkin Carving Contest. Wagon rides through the park run from 3 to 5 p.m., followed immediately by the Kids Costume Contest. The torch-lit trail will be open from 6 to 8 p.m. The Sherwood Lions and Friends of High Cliff will be sponsoring the event and visitors are encouraged to bring non-perishable food items to help the Sherwood Lions Food Drive and used eyewear will be collected for the Sherwood Lionesses programs. A state park vehicle admission sticker is not required for the Fall Open House Day. For information call (920) 989-1106.
Halloween Events and Kinni Fall Fest at Kinnickinnic State Park near River Falls, begins at 1 p.m. Saturday, Oct. 29 with pumpkin painting, a nature scavenger hunt, a kid’s costume contest, a bonfire, ghost stories and more. From 7 to 9:45 p.m. the “Haunted Trail” will be ready for exploration. For information call (715) 425-1129.
Campground Halloween Event at Kohler-Andrae State Park near Sheboygan will invite visitors to come to view the campers’ Halloween lights and decor and bring children for trick-or-treating from 5 to 8 p.m. Saturday, Oct. 29. The electrical loop of campground closed to vehicular traffic. For information call (920) 451-4080
Halloween Bash at Willow River State Park near Hudson is a non-scary event for young kids at the Nature Center on the evening of Saturday, Oct. 29 with kid’s games, storytelling, and a hike to meet some of the wild things that live at the park. Costumes are encouraged. For information call (715) 386-5931
FOR MORE INFORMATION CONTACT: Wisconsin State Parks – (608) 266-2181