Make us your home page

Today’s top headlines delivered to you daily.

(View our Privacy Policy)

Honeymoon Island ushers in spooky fun


Welcome to the Hotel Caladesi. It's such a lovely place — especially this time of year.

The hotel is actually a picnic shelter turned into a haunted house with spooky scenes inside.

It's just one shining slice of "Halloween in the Park XII: Shipwreck Island," a fundraiser to benefit Friends of the Island Parks, the citizen support organization for Honeymoon and Caladesi Island state parks.

Admission is $10 per carload of participants. In return for their bravery, they get 10 game tickets for amusements like a bean bag toss.

Check in from 6 to 10 p.m. today and Saturday. Check out, well ... we'll get to that later.

Organizers promise food, pirate stories, face painting, fortune-telling and a shipwreck-theme trail on Honeymoon Island State Park.

Food choices include gumbo, hot dogs, burgers, popcorn and pretzels at a food wagon provided by Cafe Honeymoon.

The event should make for some rare, after-dark fun in the park, which normally closes at sunset.

Park manager Peter Krulder answered some questions about the event. Here's what you need to know:

This is the island's 12th annual Halloween in the Park. How did it begin?

The event began as a safe, family-friendly alternative to trick-or-treating. It's grown every year, and the themes change to make it new and different.

What are the scary trails like?

Guests will enter the "Port of Honeymoon" and see signs of shipwrecks past, including that of an old ocean liner. They'll walk through a jungle, where they may be enticed by the likes of Medusa. Warn them to beware of the Venus Flytrap and cannibals that hang around the sacred volcano.

After guests have made it through the quicksand, they can stop and dine with all of their ghostly friends at the Shipwreck Cafe. Featured menu items are heart of Pam salad, Pete roast with carrots and toes, Rat-tatouille and sweet bug sorbet. Hopefully, they'll be able to make it across Bloody Beach. If so, a wonderful night's stay awaits them at Hotel Caladesi, where guests can check in but may not check out.

Are there any age limits?

No. Parental discretion is advised. We also offer a Smokey Bear-themed area for small children.

Have a Diversions idea? Reach Terri Reeves at

If you go

Halloween in the Park XII: Shipwreck Island

What: An event to benefit Friends of the Island Parks, the citizen support organization for Honeymoon and Caladesi Island state parks.

Where: Picnic area at Honeymoon Island State Park, 1 Causeway Blvd., Dunedin.

When: 6 to 10 p.m. today and Saturday.

Admission: $10 per carload; receive 10 free game tickets.

Wear: Costumes (optional) and walking shoes.

Take: Insect repellent and a small flashlight.

Information: Call (727) 469-5942 or visit

Honeymoon Island ushers in spooky fun 10/22/09 [Last modified: Thursday, October 22, 2009 5:20pm]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times


Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

  1. Jones: Bucs need success to get national respect


    Tampa Bay Times columnist Tom Jones offers up his Two Cents on the world of sports.

    No respect

    Tampa Bay Buccaneers head coach Dirk Koetter walks the field during the second day of mandatory minicamp at One Buccaneer Place in Tampa, Fla., on Wednesday, June 14, 2017. LOREN ELLIOTT   |   Times
  2. Hopes fade after landslide destroys Chinese village (w/video)


    Crews searching through the night in the rubble left by a landslide that buried a mountain village under tons of soil and rocks in southwestern China found 15 bodies, but more than 110 more people remained missing.

    Vehicles and people line a road leading to the site of a landslide in Xinmo village in Mao County on Saturday in southwestern China’s Sichuan Province. More than 100 people remained missing after the village was buried under tons of rocks and soil.
  3. Rookie Jake Faria dissatisfied with performance in Rays' loss to Orioles

    The Heater

    ST. PETERSBURG — The rookie pitcher walked to his locker Saturday after tossing the fourth quality start in as many tries to begin his career. He held the potent Orioles bats to three runs and for six innings gave his team a chance to win.

    Orioles third baseman Manny Machado tags out the Rays’ Mallex Smith at third after a rundown in the first inning.
  4. Thousands converge in two St. Pete locations celebrating LGBT rights

    Human Interest

    ST. PETERSBURG — Tom Rockhill didn't know what to expect Saturday, but by noon people were knocking on the door of his bar Right Around the Corner in Grand Central.

    (From left to right) Emma Chalut 18, gets a rainbow sticker on her cheek from her sister Ellie, 15 both of Jacksonville before the annual St. Pete Pride parade in downtown St. Petersburg on Saturday. This year the route was changed from the Grand Central and Kenwood area to Bayshore Drive.
[EVE EDELHEIT   |   Times]
  5. Retired Florida Supreme Court Justice Parker Lee McDonald dies

    TALLAHASSEE — A former Florida Supreme Court justice, who wrote a decision that prevented lawyers from excluding jurors because of their race, has died.

    Former Florida Supreme Court Justice Parker Lee McDonald died Saturday, the court said in a statement. He was 93.