This is Halloween in Madison

Happy Halloween! We’ve done our best to compile a list of all the great, family-friendly Halloween activities happening over the next few weeks. If you know of any additional events, share it in the comments or e-mail us at: raisingmadison [!at]hotmail.com and we’ll add it to the post.

And in case you missed it, here’s the post we did early last month about fall festivities happening at nearby farms!

Saturday, October 16

SwimWest Pumpkin-Palooza and Olympics

Join SwimWest for their first ever Pumpkin-Palooza from 1 – 5 pm! They’ll have a huge selection of pumpkins for the kids to pick, carve, and paint. (Pumpkins $10 each or 2/$17) There will also be various kids activities, open swim, caramel apples, fun Halloween cut-outs for the kids to take pictures in, and a bounce house!

The SwimWest Olympics is open to any swimmer registered in their fall session of swim lessons, and will offer the kids a great opportunity to show off all the skills they have learned in their swim lessons!

– Olympics begin at 1:00 pm
– Pre-registration is required at the front desk
– There will be a small fee of $3/swimmer to enter the event
– All swimmers will receive a ribbon for their participation
– They invite levels Angelfish through Shark to join us

SwimWest will also be accepting donations of non-perishable food items to benefit the Middleton Outreach Ministry’s food pantry.

Enjoy Ghostly Giggles and Silly Spooky Stories at Hawthorne Library from 1:30 pm – 2:30 pm. Enjoy the frightfully fun and completely child-friendly story-telling of Reid Miller, who has been sharing stories for over thirty years. He will put us in the Halloween spirit with some seasonally spooky stories. Chills and thrills for all ages.

Preschool Costume Party at Meadowridge Library (5740 Raymond Rd) from 2 – 3 pm. Stories, songs and games galore! Come dressed up or try on costumes at the library. Call 288-6160 or register online. Attendee must be between the ages of 3 years and 5 years old.

Saturday, October 23

Oak Bank will hold its annual Great Pumpkin Give Away from 10 am to 1 pm at Oak Bank in Fitchburg to benefit Easter Seals of Wisconsin! Easter Seals offers a variety of unique and vital services designed to address the needs of people with disabilities across our state. When you make a cash donation to Easter Seals Wisconsin, you will get a pumpkin just in time for Halloween! Families are welcome to come to Oak Bank’s green space at 5951 McKee Road in Fitchburg to enjoy kids’ activities, refreshments and prizes. Guest appearances by: Bucky Badger, Maynard the Mallard & Crash Helmet. Thanks to a generous donation from Fun Play Inflatables, there will also be a bouncer for the kids to enjoy.

Halloween Magic at Lakeview Library (2845 N. Sherman Ave.). Get ready for Halloween with awesome magician Morris Taylor! 11:30 am – 12:30 pm in the Community Room.

Fitchburg Public Library’s Great Halloween Hunt will be held in the Fitchburg Community Center, 5510 Lacy Road on Saturday Oct. 23 from 6 -10 p.m. Children will create their own trick or treat bags then collect goodies from a variety of costumed characters scattered throughout the Oak Hall room. There will be crafts, games, clowns, a magician and a movie (“Monsters Inc.”) at 8:00 p.m. Contact the library at 270-4205 or email library@city.fitchburg.wi.us with any questions.

Sunday, October 24

Halloween at the Zoo is a celebration for the entire community that includes free Trick-or-Treating, a Fun House, and music from 10 am – 4 pm.

Halloween at the Zoo has proven itself to be a steadfast, supported and celebrated tradition that is endorsed by local Police & Fire agencies as “A neat place to meet for a safe trick-or-treat”. Since it’s inception in 1987, the event has raised hundreds of thousands of dollars to support the Henry Vilas Zoo. This year, net proceeds will benefit the Zoo Century campaign, a ten-year $27 million fundraising initiative to complete major Zoo renovations. Halloween at the Zoo is supported by businesses, organizations and families from across Dane County and is presented by Associated Bank.

**New this year: Free parking and shuttle buses (wheelchair assessable) will be provided from the corner of Wingra Street and Park Street running every 10-15 minutes from 9:30 am to 4:30 pm. Free parking is available in the Labor Temple and Post Office lot (1602 S Park St). This is made possible by Kobussen Buses and Meriter Hospital.

Dave Landau’s Pre-Halloween Party in the Front Lecture Room – 202 at Central Library from 2:00 pm – 2:45 pm. Wear your costume, enjoy a treat and listen to Dave Landau! No registration required.

Thursday, October 28

Celebrate your Baby’s First Halloween at Madison Children’s Museum from 10 am – 12 pm, presented by Madison Children’s Museum and Happy Bambino! You and your baby will enjoy live music, special treats, and an outdoor costume parade. Be creative with that costume! We’ll award prizes for the Best Baby Costume, Best Pair/Family Costume, and Best Older Sibling Costume.

Children under age 1 always get in free at MCM. Regular admission prices apply for older siblings and adults. Happy Bambino members will receive buy-one, get-one-free admission. Reservations are not needed. For questions, please contact Adam at 608.354.0536.

Positively Pumpkins at Olbrich Gardens.

Have you ever seen a pumpkin with a flower nose and fuzzy grass eyebrows? How about a crown made of cornhusks? Enjoy your day off from school with this fun class and decorate your own pumpkin with dried plant materials from the Gardens. Pumpkins are NOT provided, please bring one pumpkin for each paying participant. Ages 5 and up (children 8 and under must be accompanied by an adult). Call 246-4550 to register.

Thursday, October 28, 10-11 a.m.
Registration Deadline: October 21
Cost: $9/$7 member | Course Number: 61-03

OR

Thursday, October 28, 1-2 p.m.
Registration Deadline: October 21
Cost: $9/$7 member | Course Number: 61-04

Friday, October 29


Downtown Madison Family Trick or Treat
2:00 to 6:00 pm
State Street & the Capitol Square
Ages 12 & under

Enjoy Halloween fun for the whole family in Downtown Madison!

Families and children 12 & under can trick or treat at Participating Businesses on State Street and the Capitol Square, Fri., Oct. 29, from 2 to 6 pm. Free!

Look for the “Family Trick or Treat – Stop In Here” flyers in participating business windows, download the list of participating businesses (coming soon), or pick up the list (once available) at the Madison Children’s Museum (100 N. Hamilton St.) or at the Downtown Visitor Center (452 State St.).

Madison Parks Hay Rides on the Capitol Square

Hay rides around the Capitol Square, pulled by tractor, leaving approx. every 20 minutes from 2 – 6 pm. Pickup point on N. Carroll St. near State St. $2.00/person, no reservations required.
Call (608) 266-4711 or see here for more information.


Visit Madison Children’s Museum for its second annual Beakers & Broomsticks fundraising event October 29, 6 – 8:30 pm. For just one night, the museum comes bubbling to life with spooky science and zany Halloween antics. Costumed little creatures and parents will also enjoy arts and crafts, and light refreshments. Kids will rock the night away with Ken Lonnquist, who will release his new Halloween CD, “Pumpkenland.”

Tickets are now available for online purchasing. Prices are $12 per person or $40 for a family four-pack. Children under 1 get in for free. All proceeds from Beakers & Broomsticks benefit Madison Children’s Museum. For more information, contact Adam at 608.354.0536.

Saturday, October 30

Overture’s Kids in the Rotunda presents Wayne the Wizard at 9:30 am, 11 am and 1 pm. Wayne caught the magic bug at age 11 and he’s still contagious! Wayne will wow you and your family with astonishing illusions, impressive tricks, colorful balloon animals and a ventriloquist act that will leave you wondering if puppets really can come to life. So pack up your magic wand, unmarked card deck and black top hat, and head to the Rotunda Stage because this show promises to get the whole audience involved in making the magic happen!

Sunday, October 31

Trick-or-Treat in the safe, warm environment of East Towne Mall or West Towne Mall. This year, the event will be held from 4 pm to 5 pm at both locations.

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