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. Former Sen. Greg Evers, advocate for law enforcement, dead at 62.

    State Roundup

    TALLAHASSEE — Former State Sen. Greg Evers, the Baker Florida strawberry farmer and veteran politician, was killed in a single car crash hear his home in Okaloosa County. The Florida Highway Patrol confirmed the death late Tuesday, but deferred any further information pending an investigation. He was 62.

    Former Florida Senator Greg Evers, R- Milton, was a passionate advocate for law enforcement and corrections officers. He was found dead Tuesday afternoon in a car crash. He was 62. [SCOTT KEELER | Tampa Bay Times]
  2. Polk sheriff: Gibsonton man sent child porn to Bay News 9 anchor


    A 20-year-old Gibsonton man was indicted on federal charges after authorities said he repeatedly sent child pornography to a news anchor for Bay News 9.

    Marchaun Browning, 20 of Gibsonton, was indicted on federal charges, accused of sending child pornography to a news anchor for Bay News 9 using Twitter. [Courtesy of Polk County Sheriff's Office]
  3. 5 things to do under $5: Type artists, shuffleboard, toy train show, Wildflower Walk


    1 Letterheads Typefest: The muralists who run Illsol Space, a gallery in Tampa Heights, said their respect for handmade fonts and sign painting techniques moved them to curate this exhibit featuring type-based muralists, hand-style lettering designers, sign painters, letterpress studios and type designers. …

    Colm O’Connor, a Dublin sign writer, is among the 22 artists featured in the Letterheads Typefest exhibit at the Illsol Space gallery.
  4. Foundation Partners buys Anderson-McQueen Funeral Home


    ST. PETERSBURG — Anderson-McQueen Funeral Home, the Tampa Bay area's largest family-owned funeral company, has been sold.

    Anderson-McQueen Funeral Home, the Tampa Bay area's largest family-owned funeral company, has been sold.
[CHRIS URSO   |   Times]
  5. Apollo Beach woman dies while scalloping in Crystal River


    An Apollo Beach woman died on Monday while scalloping with her husband in the Gulf of Mexico off the coast of Crystal River, according to the Citrus County Sheriff's Office.