10/23-10/26 Weekend Happenings

Things to do in and around Hartford County, CT.
Things to do in and around Hartford County, CT.

Friday-Saturday, October 24-25; 7-9:30 pm Rails to the Darkside A bone-chilling ride aboard a trolley cart the “Darkside” where anything can happen. Also, a terrifying tour of the spirit inhabited cemetery and car barn.

Thursday-Sunday, October 23-26 The 7th Annual Haunted Miniature Golf Benefit Vicious vampires, wicked witches and spooky skeletons rule the nights and the days during the FVVA’s 7th Annual Haunted Miniature Golf benefit event. 18 holes of Halloween fun await participants upon entering the course under the 12-foot-high Jack-O-Lantern. Wander through a Haunted Graveyard, visit Dracula’s Fountain and the Haunted Pirate’s Tavern, and try to catch a mysterious moving doughnut at the 18th hole. Halloween treats and a special door prize will be available at the Ice Cream Parlor. Face painting and photos with “Garish the Ghoul” are available for those who dare.

Thursday-Friday, October 23-24 7pm, Saturday, Oct 25 11am, 3pm, 7pm, Sunday, October 26 1pm, 5pm Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey®  Presents Built To Amaze!℠ the 143rd edition of the Greatest Show On Earth. Surprise and wonder delights audiences with over the top feats of strength, agility and courage. As the momentum builds so does the anticipation, anything can happen when Ringling Bros. Presents Built To Amaze! Circus performers from across the globe create the perfect blend of athleticism and bravery, where power meets fearlessness and amazement has no bounds. Magnificent elephants, ferocious tigers, astonishing acrobats and awe-inspiring aerialists are engineered into one spectacular performance. Celebrate the tradition today and experience it’s modern flare of twists and turns where excitement and suspense are so intense you’ll be tempted to cover your eyes. From the blueprints to the band, the crates to the clowns, the hammer to the high wire, witness the spectacle as we measure out the perfect mix of marvel and majesty in an imagination equation where the impossible comes to life. Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey® Presents Built To Amaze! Where you can score a free ticket if it’s your baby’s first circus.

Thursday-Saturday, October 23-25, 30; hourly from 6 to 9 pm Graveyard Shift Tours Mark Twain House Museum, Hartford 860.280.3130 Admission: $22 (reservations required) marktwainhouse.org More info: Reported ghostly apparitions, mysterious bangs, and other unexplained phenomena, along with visits from Syfy’s Ghost Hunters and Ghost Hunters Academy, have led to reprise the popular Graveyard Shift Ghost Tours this year. Hear spooky tales and learn about Mark Twain’s own interest in the supernatural.

Friday-Saturday, October 24-25 (Raindate: Sundays, October 26) West Hartford Hauntings This October, a local tradition will mark it’s tenth year. The lantern-lit tours will leave from 6-8:45 p.m. (Sundays 5-7:45). Guests will be led through the stones by a dearly-departed guide, who will tell their own tale on the journey. The stories this year will include the Town’s first residents, a scandalous train accident, and a burglary gone wrong. The event takes place at the North Cemetery at 80 North Main Street in West Hartford. Tickets are on sale now. Ticket prices are $9 for children 17 and under and $13 for adults. Due to some frightening content, it is suggested that participants be age 10 or over.

Friday-Saturday, October 24-25 Spirits at Stowe: An Otherworldly Tour Did you know that Harriet Beecher Stowe attended séances and visited mediums to communicate with departed family members? Like many 19th-century Americans, she had an open mind about connecting with those who were no longer living. Explore Stowe’s involvement with the paranormal and learn about investigations by the SyFy Channel’s Ghost Hunters at Spirits at Stowe: An Otherworldly Tour every Friday and Saturday in October and October 31, 2014 at 6:30 p.m., 7:30 pm. and 8:30 p.m. Stowe’s interest in spiritualism helped to ease the pain of losing four of seven children during her lifetime. The paranormal occasionally showed up in her writing as well; she included a ghost story in Uncle Tom’s Cabin, her most famous work written in 1852.During the Spirits at Stowe tour, an interpreter will share stories about the famous author and describe unexplained events from past and present, all conducted in the dark by flashlight. Visitors will learn about the five reported deaths in the 1871 Gothic Revival home where she lived for 23 years. Stowe herself died in an upstairs bedroom in 1897 at age 86. $15/person. Appropriate for ages 12+.

Friday, October 24 Haunted Trails Calling all goblins, ghosts, and witches! Come join Winding Trails for the third annual Haunted Trails! Enjoy a 15 minute haunted hay ride in the trails. There will also be Halloween crafts, games, pumpkins to carve, a movie and some light refreshments in Garmany Hall. Please make sure you sign up for one session, and arrive a little before the start time. Sessions 1-4 will be less scary, for those that would like a less frightening experience. Space is limited! Registration is required.

Friday, October 24 Cedar Hill’s Haunted History Lantern Tour The Friday before Halloween brings Cedar Hill’s Haunted History Lantern Tour! Join us for the only night the Cemetery is open to the public after dark. Led by lantern light, attendees will visit the final resting places of some of Cedar Hill’s notable and not-so-notable residents. Character actors will share their true-yet-darker-tales. To ensure your participation in this tour, reservations are required for specific time slots. Book your reservations early by calling 860-956-3311. Please note: This tour may NOT be suitable for children under 13. Wear appropriate walking shoes and bring a flashlight. Refreshments will be available for purchase.

Friday, October 24 6-10pm Liquid Lounge: Trick or Treat Hartford’s hottest night out is going Spooky this Halloween! Join 1000 of your closest friends for creepy décor, live music, dancing, Halloween crafts, liquid delights and more. See our newest traveling exhibit, Grossology, while you’re here. Show us your eeriest costume for a chance to win awesome prizes! Activities: DJ Jon Rzasa and Powerstation DJ, Live Music with Jimmy and the Hat Tricks, Rat Circus, Glow-in-the-Dark Hula Hooping and Hula lessons, Human statue, Illusionist Bryon Lizotte, Roving zombies, Black Light Room with Glow-in-the-Dark Live Science demonstrations, Zombie Photobooth. Halloween Crafts: Decorate a mask and create a sand art necklace and Zombie face art.

Friday, October 24 (Raindate: Saturday, October 25) Flashlight Maze Night Head down to the farm with your friends and family to explore our 6-acre corn maze in the dark between 6:30-8:30pm. Navigate your way through our butterfly maze under the moon and stars using your flashlight! This maze is not haunted, but it sure will be dark, so don’t forget to bring your own flashlights, dress warmly and wear proper footwear in case it rains! Once you have completed the maze, pull up a hay bale and continue to enjoy the company of your friends warming up at the fire and sipping on some hot mulled cider while making s’mores! On Friday, October 24th a hayride will be included in the maze admission. Come early to catch a ride on one of our two hayrides at 5:30 or 6pm before heading over to the maze. We will be donating $1 from every maze pass to the Shriners Hospitals for Children. Price for Hayride & Maze: $10 ages 10 and older, $7 ages under 9 (2 and under free) 2 Hayride Times – 5:30 & 6 pm. Last ticket sold at 8 pm.

Friday. October 24; 6-9:30 Cedar Hill’s Haunted History Lantern Tour The only night during the year that the cemetery is open to the public after dark. Led by lantern light, attendees will visit the final resting places of some of Cedar Hill’s notable and not-so-notable residents. Character actors will share their true-yet-darker-tales. To ensure your participation in this tour, reservations are required for specific time slots! Please note: This tour may NOT be suitable for children under 13. Wear appropriate walking shoes and bring a flashlight.

October 24; 7pm Pipescreams is back! A fun, free, family-friendly concert. Costumed organists play wild and spooky music. Video projection of the organists’ hands and feet, stage lighting, fog. Audience members are welcome to wear costumes. No applause allowed—just boos and hisses! Free-will donation goes to Hartford AGO young organist scholarship. Reception follows.

Friday-Sunday, October 24-26, October 31-November 1 The Haunted Graveyard at Lake Compounce

Friday-Sunday, October 24-26, October 31-November 2 Witch’s Dungeon Classic Movie Museum

Saturday, October 25; 9:30-11:30am West Hartford Pumpkin Carnival & Halloween Stroll Costumed children of all ages are invited to West Hartford for a fantastic and fun holiday morning. Live music, inflatable slide and bounce houses, games and petting zoo by the Greater Hartford YMCA, gymnastics activities by My Gym of West Hartford, and much, much more! The Halloween Stroll will step off at 10:30 AM through Blue Back Square and West Hartford Center where treat-or-treaters are encouraged to visit participating merchants who have more exciting fun planned, the West Hartford Center Farmer’s Market, and don’t forget to climb aboard the fire truck! Town of West Hartford Parking Lot, 50 S. Main St., West Hartford

Saturday, October 25 Sensory Friendly Film featuring Book of Life.

Saturday, October 25 10am-5pm Let’s Play Expo For one day only, Let’s Play Expo will be the hub for all things fun. This event is jam-packed with entertainment, exhibitors, games, great deals, giveaways and more for kids and their families! Let’s Play Expo features: Zone including a bouncy house, trampoline, Family Adventure Obstacle Course that challenge the five senses, Glow Zone with music and glow in the dark dance party, Form a team or go solo in the Lazer Tag zone, Design your own games and play games from around the world, Magic show, face painting, yoga, dress up. Come in your Halloween costume or make your own costumes. Earn activity tickets and prizes during scavenger hunt. Exhibitors offering family friendly products and services. Get a Play Pass for unlimited play for $25 or activity tickets. FREE admission for children under 12 months. Tickets*: $5 Adults; $5 children 12 and under (includes one free activity). $0.50 facility fee applies to each ticket.

Saturday, October 25 10am-3:30pm Halloween Gala at Bristol Library Come dressed in your costume for pictures, spooky tunnels, crafts and more!

Saturday, October 25 10am to Noon or 1pm to 3pm Hobgoblin Fair What “critters” will appear on our trails this Halloween? Join us for our annual Hobgoblin Fair held the Saturday before Halloween (or on Halloween if it falls on a Saturday). The Fair features the “Track-and-Treat” walk, children’s crafts, cupcake decorating, face painting, a Country Kitchen of yummy homemade items, and a delicious lunch of homemade soup, bread and apple cider.

Saturday, October 25 Cheney Railroad History Walk Join WalkCT Family Guide Susan Barlow for an easy, but bumpy, walk along this former railroad, built in 1869 to connect the Cheney silk mills to the main rail line in the North End. At 2.5 miles, this was the shortest private freight-and-passenger railroad in the United States. We will hike along the 1-mile portion owned by the Manchester Land Conservation Trust and, depending on the weather, on to Center Springs Park, which will take about 1.75 hours round trip. Come discover the history of the railroad, including a chance to see maps and historic pictures. A railroad favor will be given to children participating in the walk. Susan is an American Red Cross First Aid/CPR-trained WalkCT Family Guide and Manchester Historical Society volunteer. This free outing is sponsored by the WalkCT program (of the Connecticut Forest & Park Association). All are welcome to join in the fun, including singles. There are no restrooms along the route. Extreme weather cancels. No dogs, please.

Saturday, October 25, 2-3:30pm Bring the family for an afternoon of Halloween fun as we host the inaugural Tom Sawyer’s Tricks & Treats. Be amazed by magic tricks! Have a laugh with author Artie Bennett, author of Belches & Burps & Farts, Oh My! Poopendous and The Butt Book! Enjoy a spooky performance by the Mark Twain Players! Join us for this exciting family event. Costumes encouraged for trick or treating at Mark Twain’s house, too! Tickets are $10 for adults and $5 for children 16 and under.

Saturday, October 25 Collinsville Halloween Parade Beginning at 6:30 pm, the main streets in Collinsville will close to traffic and open to all who are brave and daring enough to join in the 20th annual Collinsville Halloween Parade. The idea of a Halloween Parade along the streets of Collinsville was the brainchild of Jon Squier and a few fellow C-villens in 1994. At 6:30 pm, as the dusk takes over the village of Collinsville, all ghosts, ghouls and goblins and anyone else who venture in meet at the foot of the balcony at the Canton Historical Museum. Boosolini greets the crowd, the candy flows and the Halloween magic takes over. Each year, the pre-parade antics of Boosolini on the balcony along with various forms of ghoulish and ghastly entertainment are featured such as an annual screaming procession. This year too you will witness a cannon shooting off flying ghosts and treats. At 7:00pm the parade ritual begins on Main Street. Haunting pipe organ sounds can be heard and all those who are Halloween-donned and those who choose to remain un-donned follow the fog and music down Main Street. As you walk the parade path, you will find amongst the many horrifying visuals, the “Collinsville Judges” searching for the scariest, most original and funniest costumes of the night. After the parade of fright and fun; ghosts, goblins and goons congregate again at the balcony for the judging of the costumes, led by C-ville’s Boosolini. Dear fellow Halloween friend or fiend, if you find yourself in the vicinity of Collinsville on Saturday night October 25th and can muster up the courage to partake of the madness and mischievousness that is the Collinsville Halloween Parade…dare to stop and gather at the balcony ~ Boosolini will be watching for you…

Saturday-Sunday, October 25-16 11am-3pm Spooktacular Science Celebrate Halloween at the Science Center! Visitors will be treated to extra special fun for the whole family. All activities are included free with Connecticut Science Center Membership or the purchase of General Admission. Kids’ costumes are encouraged! Eerie entertainment includes: Trick-or-treating, Frozen sing-along with Elsa and Anna, Face painting, Pumpkin decorating, Halloween crafts, Live Science: Make your own slime! Kids’ “Scary”-oke. PLUS, see a special sneak preview of our Dino Encounter show! Journey back in time to meet a walking, roaring Tyrannosaurus rex. Don’t worry—he’s friendly! You can even “feed” him to see what he likes!

Saturday-Sunday, October 25-26, Witches and Tombstones Tour After leaving the Webb-Deane-Stevens Museum, the first stop on the 90-minute Witches and Tombstones tour is the1711 Buttolph-Williams House, with tales from the notorious Wethersfield Witch Trials, including that of Katherine Harrison, who narrowly escaped the noose thanks to a technicality. Instead, she was banished and financially ruined. The second stop on the tour is the Wethersfield Ancient Burying Ground, where, among other grim details, visitors will hear of Connecticut’s first mass murder and learn how gravestones warned the living of their own impending peril. At the Isaac Stevens House, visitors will be seated in the front parlor, which is somberly prepared for a 19th-century wake, including a prepared coffin, shrouded windows and mirrors, and tansy and rosemary to mask any “odors.” A guide will detail 1800s mourning practices and how the living dealt with fears of being buried alive. Admission is $13 per person. Space is limited and reservations are strongly advised.

Sunday, October 26 Town of Berlin Hiking Series For the third hike in the series, please join new hike leader and recently-designated Junior Conservation Ambassador Liam Flanagan-Brown at the Ragged Mountain Preserve (on West Lane). A popular central-Connecticut hiking and climbing location, we will take the challenge (approx. 500-foot elevation gain and 3.5 miles) to hike up the ridge to incredible views of fall foliage to the north, south, and west. We will consider the ecology of the traprock ridge along the way and discuss the geologic history of the rocky cliffs.

Saturday-Sunday, October 25-26; 7 pm Evil Dead: The Musical “The next Rocky Horror Show” – The New York Times. The record-breaking musical comedy sensation takes all the elements of Sam Raimi’s cult classic films—Evil Dead, Evil Dead 2, and Army of Darkness—then combines them to make one of the craziest theatrical experiences of all time. And it’s also the only musical in the world where audiences can sit in a “Splatter Zone!” and get drenched from the onstage mayhem.

Monday, October 27 Reminder to Register for Kids Monthly Workshop at Lowe’s.

Friday, October 31 Trick or Treat at the Lego Store while supplies last.

Through October 31 Spiritualism, Seances and Sam The exhibition examines the Victorian era’s fascination with the afterlife; the views of Mark Twain and his Hartford neighbors on the subject and their involvement in the spiritualism movement; and period mourning practices. It also explores the connections between spiritualism and other progressive social movements of the era, such as women’s suffrage. It will feature historic artifacts from the collections of the museum and other institutions, including photographs; newspaper articles; mourning paraphernalia, such as jewelry and clothing; correspondence; historic spirit communication devices, such as Ouija boards, spirit trumpets and automatic writing planchettes; and ephemera associated with Victorian-era psychics and spiritualists.

Through October 30 Free in store events for ages three and up at the Disney Store October 22 – Showtime at 6:30 pm, October 23 – Art of Animation at 12:00pm, October 24 – Trivia Challenge at 7:00 pm, October 26 – Art of Animation at 11:30 am, October 27 – Storytime at 6:30pm, October 29 – Trivia Challenge at 6:30 pm, October 30 – Storytime at 12:00 pm.

October 30; Noon-1pm Old State House Ghost Tour Celebrate Halloween with a Ghost Tour of Connecticut’s Old State House. Hear spooky tales and discover for yourself if any spirits abound! RSVP required.

Through November 16 Hamlet Following his critically-acclaimed productions of The Tempest, Twelfth Night and Macbeth, Darko Tresnjak takes on Shakespeare’s masterpiece, Hamlet. A Danish prince returns home to find his father killed, and his mother marrying the murderer. When his father’s ghost rises to demand retribution, Hamlet is put in an impossible situation. In this opulent, Elizabethan staging, Hamlet’s tragic tale of revenge gets the full-on, terrifying — and bloody — treatment.

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