Free and cheap things to do with the kids this week
With Halloween falling on a Sunday, it seems this weekend is packed Friday, Saturday AND Sunday (actually the Sunday haunts are causing a bit of a controversy in the Bible Belt) with haunts, spooks and parties. We have some non-Halloween fun for you also, but brace yourselfs for a frightful weekend. But at least it all free and cheap.
Conscientious moms can find some guidance out of all the disposable junk at the Green Halloween party Friday at Whole Foods. There's even eco-friendly trick or treating for the kids and a costume contest. Here's a quick link to find a pumpkin patch or a haunted house or other Halloween events.
Kick off the Halloween weekend with free Scary Face Pancakes on Friday at your nearest IHOP. The creature’s name is “Count Spatula,” and he’s an oversized buttermilk pancake with a whipped topping mouth and strawberry nose, with two mini Oreo cookies and candy corn on the side to allow kids to create their own Halloween hotcake. They are free to kids 12 and under pretty much all day, from 7 a.m. to 10 p.m.
Circus McGurkis is back! The annual peace festival and people’s fair sponsored by the Religious Society of Friends (Quakers) returns in its traditional form with art, crafts, musicians, dancers, storytellers, community action groups, kids activities and food. New this year is a Modern Day Slavery exhibit and hourly yoga sessions. It's free admission Saturday from 9 a.m.-4 p.m. at Lake Vista Park & Center, 1401 62nd Ave. S, St. Petersburg. (727) 239-5131.
Protect those noggins! For the third year, Amscot Financial and the Pinellas County Sheriff's Office will host a free bicycle helmet giveaway to promote child bike safety from 9 a.m. to noon Saturday. Amscot has donated more than 600 helmets that will be distributed on a first-come, first-serve basis at:
• 6800 Central Ave., South Pasadena.
• 2551 34th St. S, St. Petersburg.
• 6596 Park Blvd., Pinellas Park
We know you don't want to hear about holiday shopping already, but the Hyde Park Village Art Fair is a nice way to jump start your hunt for holiday gifts. You can also meet the artists and enjoy the outdoors during this two-day festival celebrating its 21st year. The festival features 150 exhibitors displaying original work, from life-size sculptures to handmade jewelry. It's Saturday-Sunday 10 a.m.-5 p.m. Free. Old Hyde Park Village, 1622 W Snow Ave., Tampa. (813) 251-3500.
We can’t help but picture the iconic video of the Go-Go’s water skiing as we watch the Southern regional champion water ski team performs free water ski shows each Saturday. But they are really much better, and they are actually in the water. This week is a night show, “Under the Haunted Big Top.” Free. Saturday 7:30 p.m. Tampa Bay Water Ski Show Team, 130 Burbank Road, Oldsmar. (813) 917-8354.
--Sharon Kennedy Wynne
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