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Tampa Bay Halloween parties, haunted houses and events this week

As we head into Halloween season there’s lots of both scary and kid-friendly choices to get into the Halloween spirit this week.
For Creatures of the Night, the Halloween event being held weekends at ZooTampa at Lowry Park, there are activities for all ages includes scare zones, nighttime animal encounters and a ghoulish dance party. [Courtesy of ZooTampa at Lowry Park]
Published Oct. 9

Haunted Ape Escape: Stroll the haunted trails after dark to watch the primates monkey around. Ages 12 and younger must be accompanied by an adult. $6. 8 p.m. Thursday-Friday. Suncoast Primate Sanctuary, 4600 Alt. U.S. 19, Tarpon Springs. (727) 943-5897. suncoastprimate.org.

Shimmering Lights Halloween: Similar to the annual Christmas display, this Halloween-themed self-guided, quarter-mile walking trail leads through dancing lights with music, an outdoor movie and a game room. $6, 3 and younger free. 7 p.m. Thursday-Sunday. SunKissed Acres, 2302 N Dover Road, Dover. (813) 494-5678. nightsofshimmeringlights.com.

Scarehouse: This haunted house to benefit the SPCA Tampa Bay brings to life classic horror films in a 10,000-square-foot warehouse of fright. $15. 7 p.m. Friday-Saturday. 12461 Creekside Drive, Largo. (757) 677-6382.

A horde of zombie dancers gathered in 2010, as part of Thrill St. Pete, an offshoot of Thrill the World, which aims to have thousands of fans around the world dance in unison to Michael Jackson's "Thriller" just before Halloween. The event returns this year and there are free dance classes if you want to join. [Tampa Bay Times]

Thriller Dance: Learn the iconic Thriller dance and prepare to take part in the worldwide Thriller flash mob. Free. 9:30 a.m. Saturday. Ferg’s Sports Bar and Grill, 1320 Central Ave., St. Petersburg. (727) 434-1383. Also at 2 p.m. Sunday. Bayou Dance Club, 6541 102nd Ave. N, Pinellas Park. (727) 228-1315. thrilltheburg.org.

Ybor Ghost Tour: Stroll the haunted streets of Ybor City with a ghost guide to hear where bodies are hidden and horrors of the Cuban Club. Reservations are required. $25. 8 p.m. daily. King Corona Cafe, 1523 E Seventh Ave., Tampa. (813) 386-3905. yborghosttour.com.

Pint-Sized Pumpkin Party: Children 6 and younger can dress in costume for a party with games, snacks, crafts, a costume parade and contest. $8-$10. 10 a.m. Thursday. Southwest Recreation Complex and Pool, 13120 Vonn Road, Largo. (727) 518-3125.

Halloween Paper Masks: Kids can use library supplies to make their own spooky paper masks. Free. 4 p.m. Thursday. SouthShore Regional Library, 15816 Beth Shields Way, Ruskin. (813) 273-3652.

Scream-A-Geddon: A monster midway and zombie paintball assault with multiple scare zones including Bozo’s Beer Garden, Rage 3D, Demons Revenge, Blackpool Prison, Deadwoods and Infected: Ground Zero. $21.95-$35.95. 7:30 p.m. daily. 27839 Saint Joe Road, Dade City. (813) 452-5412. screamageddon.com.

Howl-O-Scream: Select nights through Nov. 2, ride with zombies and goblins, tour haunted houses and drag your wretched body through scare zones. $39.99 and up. 7:30 p.m. Thursday-Sunday. Busch Gardens, 10165 N McKinley Drive, Tampa. (813) 884-4386.

St. Petersburg Ghost Tour: Costumed guides tell stories of wandering spirits, haunted mansions, phantom lovers and other mysteries of Florida’s “Sunshine City” on this candlelight walking tour. $20, $12 ages 4-12, 3 and younger free. 8 p.m. Thursday-Sunday. Sweet Divas Chocolates, 181 Fourth Ave. NE, St. Petersburg. (727) 894-4678.

Halloween Movie at Caddy’s: Dress like your favorite movie character for a screening of Disney’s Hocus Pocus with witches brew drinks and a “cauldron of soup and hot sandwich” special. Prizes for best costumes. No cover (food/drink additional). 8 p.m. Thursday. Caddy’s Gulfport, 3128 Beach Blvd. S. (727) 592-2842.

Wykoff’s Haunted House: Clowns take over a Hillbilly barn, turning it into an abandoned circus. Bring three canned food items for Bahamas relief and save $5 off admission. $10. 8 p.m. Thursday-Sunday. Oasis Pool Service, 5082 67th Way N, St. Petersburg. (727) 287-8359.

Make and Take: Paper Clay Halloween Decorations: Join an instructor and use paper clay to make “spell book” decorations to take home. $12 (clay additional). 10 a.m. Friday. Life Enrichment Center, 9704 N Boulevard, Tampa. (813) 932-0241. lectampa.org.

Creatures of the Night: The zoo stays open late as eerie characters, fearsome animals and immersive adventure zones take over. This year brings two new scare zones: Twisted Tale Trail and Rising Waters. $26.95-$29.95. 4 p.m. Friday-Saturday. ZooTampa at Lowry Park, 1101 W Sligh Ave., Tampa. (813) 935-8552.

Spook-A-Thon at the Concourse: Includes Spooky Train and Spooky Trail each Friday and Saturday through Oct. 26, as well as Oct. 27. A daylight train suitable for young and sensitive children will be from 5 to 7:15 p.m., with the spooky rides starting at 7:30. $6 train or trail, $10 both. 5 p.m. Friday-Saturday. The Concourse, 11919 Alric Pottberg Road, Shady Hills. (727) 639-7639.

Haunted River Tour: Costumed characters and “batty fiends” join you aboard a boat to share tales of ghosts and haunted facts along the Hillsborough River on this 45- to 50-minute water taxi ride. 10 p.m. sailings available on select days. $25, $20 child. 7, 8 and 9 p.m. Friday-Sunday. Pirate Water Taxi at the Tampa Convention Center, 333 S Franklin St., Tampa. (813) 390-3711.

Mischief Market: Creepy and kooky combine for this market with unique vendors, beer, live art and a movie. No cover (food/drink additional). 7 p.m. Friday. Pair O’ Dice Brewing, 4400 118th Ave. N, Clearwater. (727) 755-3423.

Sir Henry’s Haunted Trail: Choose from trails including the Harvester, Reapers Haunting and Ominous Descent. Optional laser tag and an escape game available. $10-$40. 7:30 p.m. Friday-Sunday. 2837 S Frontage Road, Plant City. (863) 944-0748.

UNDead in the Water: Avoid being eaten by infected zombie stowaways at you traverse multiple decks of a World War II cargo ship, armed only with a blacklight flashlight. $15, $13 veterans/military. 8 p.m. Friday-Saturday. USS American Victory, 705 Channelside Drive, Tampa. (813) 228-8766. undeadinthewater.com.

Day of Discovery: The lights and sounds are turned down low for children with sensory disabilities to trick-or-treat throughout the museum. $5-$8. 8 a.m. Saturday. MOSI, 4801 E Fowler Ave., Tampa. (813) 987-6000.

Pumpkin Festival: The 28th annual festival includes a pioneer trade village, hayrides, craft show, 14 live shows, pony rides, chainsaw sculpting, scarecrow displays, a rock climbing wall, barnyard playground, face painting, butterfly experience and a zip line. $10, 10 and younger free. 9 a.m. Saturday-Sunday. Hunsader Farms, 5500 County Road 675, Bradenton. (941) 322-2168.

Fall Festival Fundraiser: A family style celebration of fall with pony rides, hayrides, a bonfire, games, train rides, farm animals, face painting and live music. Benefits programs at Horse Power for Kids. $12, 1 and younger free. 11 a.m. Saturday-Sunday. 8005 S Race Track Road, Tampa. (813) 855-8992.

Here for the Boos: Dress in costume for this five-stop bar crawl with costume contests, giveaways and drink specials at each stop. $15. Noon Saturday. Soggy Bottom Brewery, 660 Main St., Dunedin. (727) 601-1698.

Pint-Sized Pumpkin Party: Children 6 and younger can dress in costume for a party with games, snacks, crafts, a costume parade and contest. $8-$10. 5:30 p.m. Saturday. Highland Recreation Complex and Family Aquatic Center, 400 Highland Ave. NE, Largo. (727) 518-3125.

Halloween Spooktacular: All ages are invited to enjoy games, candy, music and inflatables. $5 adults, $3 children. 5:30 p.m. Saturday. Land O’ Lakes Recreation Complex, 3032 Collier Parkway. (813) 929-1220.

Wags and Whiskers: The Great Catsby: Dress as a flapper or a gangster for this glamorous 1920s-style party with heavy appetizers, open bar, signature cocktails and emcee Meredyth Censullo of News Channel 8. Benefits Friends of Strays medical fund. $75-$100. 7 p.m. Saturday. St. Petersburg Woman’s Club, 40 Snell Isle Blvd. NE, St. Petersburg. (727) 522-6566. friendsofstrays.herokuapp.com.

Night of the Living Red: A four-course wine pairing dinner featuring Freakshow Cabernet Sauvignon and Sixth Sense Syrah. $40. 6:30 p.m. Tuesday. Carrabba’s Italian Grill, 1951 Fourth St. N, St. Petersburg. (727) 897-9375. Also at Carrabba’s on Tyrone Boulevard in St. Petersburg and Gulf-to-Bay Boulevard in Clearwater.

THEME PARKS

Sesame Street Safari of Fun: Elmo, Abby Cadabby, Cookie Monster, Grover, Rosita and other Sesame Street characters dress in Halloween attire for dance parties with fall-inspired activities, including trick-or-treating, crafts and a hay bale maze. Kids are encouraged to dress in costume. Included with admission. 11:30 a.m. Saturday-Sunday. Busch Gardens, 10165 N McKinley Drive, Tampa. (813) 884-4386.

Busch Gardens offers Halloween fun for Sesame Street Weekends during the day for the little ones every weekend in October. There will be crafts, trick-or-treating and a character parade Saturdays and Sundays through Oct. 28. [Courtesy of Busch Gardens]

Brick or Treat: Costumed families can experience a spooky, kooky Halloween event with exclusive entertainment, scavenger hunt, LEGO photo ops, the popular Brick-or-Treat Trail and fireworks. Park admission required. 10 a.m. Saturday-Sunday. Legoland Florida, 1 Legoland Way, Winter Haven. Toll-free 1-888-690-5346. legoland.com

Halloween Horror Nights: A series of houses drawn from the greatest horror films, along with streets transformed into sinister scare zones. $81.99. 5 p.m. Thursday-Sunday. Universal Studios Florida, 6000 Universal Blvd., Orlando. (407) 224-7840.

Mickey’s Not So Scary Halloween Party: Don your favorite costume to trick-or-treat at this Halloween-themed event at the Magic Kingdom with treats, grinning ghosts, eerie entertainment and costumed Disney characters. This year features a new 180-degree fireworks show. $79-$135, $74-$130 children. 7 p.m. today-Friday and Monday-Tuesday. Magic Kingdom at Walt Disney World, 1515 N Buena Vista Drive, Lake Buena Vista. (407) 934-7639.

Halloween Spooktacular: Kids can dress in costume for this water-themed Halloween “fantasea,” with trick-or-treat zones, whimsical sea creatures and live shows. Included with admission. 9 a.m. Saturday-Sunday. SeaWorld, 7007 SeaWorld Drive, Orlando. Toll-free 1-800-327-2424.



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