Halloween is such a fun and festive time of year! But after spending money on costumes that your little goblins will wear once (or maybe a few times if you can coerce them into playing dress-up as often as possible until their next growth spurt) plus parties, tricks and treats, it can turn into quite a pricey holiday … and then Christmas approaches.
To save some research headaches and hopefully a few bucks, I have put together a list of fun and economical ways to get into the “spirit” this Halloween season and show your kids a great time as well – and it will be our ghoulish little secret that you were saving moolah along the way. Muahahahahaha!
SCREENING OF “CASPER,” FOX LAKE Who doesn’t love this fun, PG-rated flick? 10 a.m. Oct. 24 at the Fox Lake Theatre, 115 Towne Centre Lane, Fox Lake. Free.
HALLOWEEN TRICK-OR-TREATING, CARY/FOX RIVER GROVE Get an early start on those candy baskets with some merchant trick or treating and a Halloween costume parade. 11 a.m. – 2 p.m. Oct. 24, Jewel Shopping Center, 696 Route 14, Cary; and 1 – 2 p.m. Oct. 24, Fox River Grove Stone Hill/Foxmoor Crossing, Route 22, Fox River Grove. The Cary parade will start in front of Dunkin’ Donuts and the Fox River Grove parade will start in front of Leader Ace Hardware. Free.
TRUCK OR TREAT, CRYSTAL LAKE Another great option, come dressed in costumes and see big trucks and vehicles on the beach while getting some early treats and playing Monster Bash games. 10 a.m. – 12 p.m. Oct. 24, Main Beach, 300 Lakeshore Drive, Crystal Lake. Rain or shine. Free.
TRICK-OR-TREAT TRAIL, CARY If you prefer to make your kids work for their candy, here is a more active choice. Walk the Lions Park trail with your costumed kiddos and have fun with games, prizes and more. 1 – 2 p.m. Oct. 24, Lions Park, 1200 Silver Lake Road, Cary. Cost: $5 per child.
MCHENRY OUTDOOR THEATER TRUNK OR TREAT Score some goodies from local businesses while in costume AND enjoy a fun, family night at the movies for all ages! Any kids that dress up get FREE popcorn. 6 p.m. October 23 & 24. Movies will begin at 7:30 p.m., showing Hotel Transylvania followed by Beetlejuice. 1510 Chapel Hill Road, McHenry.
HALLOWEEN HOOPLA, MCHENRY Celebrate a safe Halloween inside with “Thrilling” music, dance contests, games and simple crafts for costumed children ages 2-10 accompanied by an adult. Cost: $5 a child at the door, adults free. 6 – 8 p.m. Oct. 27, Hilltop School, 2615 W. Lincoln Road, McHenry.
HALLOWEEN FUN AT MCHENRY LIBRARY Gentle Halloween stories for preschool children will be performed by the McHenry Mighty Arts Players. Sing songs, do fingerplays and trick or treat around the library (bags provided). Free. 10 – 11 a.m. or 1 – 2 p.m. Oct. 28, McHenry Public Library, 809 N. Front St., McHenry.
PARTY AT THE PLAZA, CRYSTAL LAKE Crystal Lake Plaza merchants host a party with activities for adults and children, including a fun house, pumpkin decorating, petting zoo, face painting, trick-or-treating, touch-a-truck, hot apple cider and more. 11 a.m. – 3 p.m. Oct. 31, New Balance Crystal Lake in Crystal Lake Plaza, 6500 Route 14, Crystal Lake. Star 105.5 will be broadcasting live from 1 -3 p.m. Free.
SAFETY TOWN TRICK-OR-TREAT, LAKE IN THE HILLS The Lake in the Hills Police Department will host its 10th annual safe trick-or-treat night for guys and ghouls in a fenced area where they can meet friendly monsters and other characters who will hand out treats from the miniature town. 3 -6 p.m. Oct. 31, behind the Safety Educational Center, 1109 Crystal Lake Road, Lake in the Hills. Free.
HALLOWEEN ON THE SQUARE, WOODSTOCK The event begins with a costume contest at 4 p.m. at the gazebo followed by trick-or-treating throughout Woodstock Square. Prizes will be awarded for the scariest, funniest and most original costumes in four age categories: 3 years and younger, 4 to 8 years, 9 to 13 years and 14 and older. 4 p.m. to 5 p.m. Oct. 31, Woodstock Square. Free.
Get ready for some very scary sugar highs!