Halloween activities are sprouting up

Published 12:00 am Tuesday, October 21, 2003

Suffolk News-Herald

Autumn and the spirit of Halloween are in the air, and Suffolk’s Division of Tourism and the Seaboard Train Station and Railroad Museum are ready to welcome the public for a variety of festive events to celebrate the season.

Kicking off the fun, the tourism department will host its first Pumpkin Patch and Open House from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Oct. 25. The event will include a costume contest for children under 12, and pumpkin-carving contest open to all; participants are encouraged to bring accessories such as wigs and jewelry to decorate pumpkins. A $4 per person entry fee includes a pumpkin of your choice, refreshments and pony rides. Pumpkins also will be available for purchase for your holiday decorating at home. All proceeds benefit the United Way.


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The Whidbee Lane Corn Maze is expected to be a lot of fun as well as a learning experience for children. At the farm, they will learn about a real working farm with baby animals they can hold and feed.

Children can also take a hayride through fields of corn, peanuts, cotton, pumpkins, and soybeans and they will enjoy winding their way through the pumpkin shaped corn maze. The cost is $6 to $8 per person for the Whidbee Lane Corn Maze events and it is open Tuesday through Sunday. The farm is located at 8499 Southwestern Boulevard. Call 657-6953.

At the Train Station, there will be an old-time Pumpkin Market with bright orange pumpkins available for purchase. The market will be open 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Wednesday through Saturday, and from 1 to 4 p.m. Sunday. For more information on this event, call 923-4750.

The renovated Prentis House will give up its serene setting for one evening, Oct. 31, as it takes on a ghostly appearance for trick-or-treaters. Children under 12 are invited to the scene of the haunting at the Prentis House, which is now the Suffolk Visitor Center. Hours are from 6 to 8 p.m., and the house is located at 321 N. Main St., just across from the train station. For more information, call 923-3880.

Directly across the street, it’s going to be a Spooky Halloween at the Train Station. It will be a prelude to trick or treating, featuring &uot;Whiskers,&uot; the train station mouse and his friend, Miss Karen, as he tells about his spooky Halloween adventures. The event also includes goblin treats and crazy crafts.

There will be a costume contest at 5:30 p.m., and children must be accompanied by an adult. Space is limited, so tickets are required. This event runs from 4:30 to 6 p.m. The Railroad Museum is located at 326 N. Main St., and for more information, call 923-4750.

There are Halloween events taking place across the city, offering safe alternatives for trick or treating. From 6 to 8 p.m., there will be a Harvest Celebration at Mack Benn Jr. Recreation Center at 1253 Nansemond Parkway. The school’s PTA and Suffolk Parks & Recreation are co-sponsoring this free event where children, ages 2 to 12, are invited for an evening of celebration and fun, including games, prizes and a cakewalk. A canned food donation is requested. For more information, call 923-2360.

Birdsong Recreation Center, 301 N. Main St., gets into the festivities with a safe and entertaining Halloween event for teenagers aged 14 to 17; their Teen Scream promises to include haunted hallways, palm reading, costume contests, refreshments and a dance. The cost for all this fun is a bargain at only $3 per teen. Hours are from 6:30 to 10 p.m. For more information, call Suffolk Parks & Recreation at 923-2360.

For the safest trick or treating in town, bring children ages 12 and under to the Suffolk Police Department at 230 E. Washington St. and the Precinct at 3901 Bridge Road. Police officers have promised a ghoulishly good time to all the children who will receive treats and parents will receive some excellent information on crime prevention.

Ident-A-Kid services will also be available. The hours for this event are 5:30 to 8 p.m., and for more information, call 923-2175.

Suffolk’s Director of Tourism, Lynnette Brugeman, said the Tourism Division’s mission is to improve the level and quality of tourism activity in the City of Suffolk and to increase the awareness of the natural, historic, cultural, and architectural heritage of the City. The Suffolk Visitor Center is located in the heart of historic Suffolk in the Prentiss House (c. 1800) located at 321 N. Main St. Open 9 a.m. – 5 pm. Sunday through Saturday. Call 923-3880 for details.