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Halloween is almost upon us, here are some freakishly fun ways to celebrate this October in the Colorado Springs region:
Haunted Mines - (Weekends, October 7- 31, 2011) & Halloween Scanvenger Hunt (October 1- 31,2011) - By day, kiddos aged 12 & under visiting the Westerm Museum of Mining & Indsutry can participate in a Halloween-themed scavenger hunt. Clues are hidden throughut the hands-on exhibits to understand life in mining communities. By night, the grounds transform into the area's most thrilling and terrifying haunted attraction. “Victims” will experience Total Terror as they drop into the Haunted Mines on the Rapid Descenders, travel through spooky tunnels, ride the Hellevator, crawl to escape the vent shaft, slide down flumes, race through cemeteries and get terrorized in a western town. www.hauntedmines.org.
See the Original Creatures of the Night - Weekends, Ooctober 21-30, 2011 - It’ll be all treats and no tricks (well, maybe just a few!) for little ghosts and goblins at this year’s Boo at the Zoo, the region’s largest Halloween party. Boo at the Zoo is for families wanting a safe, not-too-scary adventure. The popular haunted house and ghostly graveyard both return this year. Be sure to check out the “Things That Go Bump in the Night” animal show at the Lodge at Moose Lake nightly. Littler spooks will enjoy the creepy bat cave, pumpkin path and Boo Carousel. Select animal exhibits will also be open. www.cmzoo.org.
A Moonlit "Howl-Oween" - October 29, 2011 - Wolves are elusive in the wild, but the Colorado Wolf and Wildlife Center is home to wolves, wolf dogs, foxes and coyotes. The center offers full moon tours that include feeding the wolves meat-filled pumpkins, hearing wolf trivia by the light of a bonfire under the rising moon. Reservations required 719.687.9742 or www.wolfeducation.org.
Emma Crawford Coffin Races & Parade - October 29, 2011 - The legend of Emma Crawford lives on in this wacky race up Manitou Avenue. Costumed impersonators of Emma Crawford, a 19th-century local who was buried on nearby Red Mountain, ride on coffin-like contraptions pulled by teams of four “mourners.” A parade and awards for the best Emma and most creative coffin complete the daylong event. The night before, a Victorian Wake is held at Miramont Castle in Emma’s honor. Emma supposedly still haunts Red Mountain. www.manitousprings.org.
Manitou Springs Ghost Tour - October 29, 2011 - The tours tell the stories of real people who lived or died in remarkable ways in Manitou Springs. The ghosts of these departed come back to visit on this one night and feature at least one new or different ghost each year.The tours, approximately 45 minutes long, depart from the Manitou Springs Heritage Center starting at 6:30 p.m. and leave every 15 minutes until the last tour at 9:00 p.m. www.manitouspringsheritagecenter.org.
Trick-or-Treat Train - October 29-30, 2011 - Jump aboard the Royal Gorge Route’s Halloween "Trick or Treat" Train and take a spooky two-hour excursion complete with special treats and costumed staff and guests. The excursion ends at a pumpkin patch where children are free to pick their favorite. Keep an eye out for a glimpse of the ghost of the Santa Fe Depot, believed to be an old railroader from the 1870’s war of the Royal Gorge. 12:30 PM departure on October 29th and 30th. Reservations required, 888-724-5748 or www.royalgorgeroute.com.