East Lansing Gears up for Halloween Festivities

Tuesday, October 24, 2017, 4:14 pm
Rosalind Arch

This Halloween, East Lansing will be bustling with ghosts, goblins, and witches as young trick-or-treaters navigate through the city participating in the many activities that will take place this year. The annual Safe Halloween and Great Pumpkin Walk will provide children with Halloween-related fun, while the Michigan State Department of Theater invites older thrill-seekers to brave a walk through their haunted auditorium.

On Thursday, October 26th, the MSU Greek community will welcome children and parents to their annual event, Safe Halloween. This all-ages event has a legacy in the MSU Greek Community of providing children in East Lansing with a safe environment to participate in Halloween activities.

This year, nine student organizations will work together to put on this spooky evening. Participants can expect “activities such as face painting, costume contests, inflatable moonwalk, reading circles, arts and crafts, a DJ playing family-friendly Halloween tunes, food trucks and more,” says Linda Alexander, Assistant Director of Greek Life. Children are encouraged to dress in their favorite kid-friendly costume and enjoy this annual event with local Michigan State students.

Safe Halloween is part of an effort by the Greek Community to raise funds for the East Lansing Public Library, and sales of Safe Halloween shirts have benefitted the Library. “This event is important to the Greek Community because [we] like to continue to establish good relationships with the City of East Lansing,” reports Alexander, “as well as to provide residents of East Lansing and Lansing an opportunity to participate in a family-friendly event….” Safe Halloween will take place at 5:30-7:30 PM on October 26th, on M.A.C. Avenue, between Burcham and Elizabeth.

On Monday, October 30th, from 5:00 to 7:00 PM, the City will host the Great Pumpkin Walk, an event designed to give families the opportunity to bring their children downtown for trick-or-treating festivities at more than fifty East Lansing businesses. Participating businesses will be clearly marked with a flyer in the door or window, indicating that children are free to come in and collect complimentary goodies.

“It’s up to each [merchant] what they choose to provide—in the past they have passed out candy, as well as pens, stickers, and erasers,” explains Claire Peabody, Downtown Management Board Coordinator for the City of East Lansing. Children are encouraged to dress in costume for this event.

Down the street, the Eli and Edythe Broad Art Museum will be hosting “ArachnoBROADia!” from 5:00 to 8:00 PM, a “fantastical evening” filled with Halloween-themed games and crafts. Those interested in creepy critters are invited to stop by MSU’s Bug House, where visitors can learn all about a variety of insects. The Museum is located at 547 E. Circle Drive.

Also on the 30th, families can follow the Yellow Brick Road at the Wild Goose Inn, where the annual “Land of Oz” will take place from 5:00 to 7:00 PM. Participants will be transported into a world of characters from the Wizard of Oz. There will be a dozen active puppets and fifteen costumed characters strolling along the path handing out. According to Paul Martin, Manager of the Wild Goose Inn, attendance at this event has almost tripled in the last nine years. Over 1200 kids walk through the Land of Oz every year, and he expects a line out the door this year. “We like to see the little kids’ faces light up at this big event we put on every year,” says Martin, chuckling.

Parking in downtown East Lansing will be free from 4:30 to 8:30 on Monday, October 30th.

Fearless (and older) souls are invited to the Michigan State Auditorium this weekend to see a hair-raising performance by students in the MSU Theater Department. This is the 9th annual “Haunted Aud,” a chance for more grownup residents to stroll through a living, breathing, haunted house. Tickets can be purchased online or at the door for $15.00. All proceeds go to assisting student organizations and initiatives. Doors are open Friday, October 27th from 8:00 PM to 1:00 AM, Saturday, October 28th from 10:00 PM to 1:00 AM, and Sunday, October 29th from 7:00 PM to 11:00 PM. The MSU Auditorium is located at 542 Auditorium Rd. on the corner of Auditorium Road & Farm Lane.

Trick-or-Treating will be occurring in East Lansing neighborhoods from 6:00 to 8:00 PM on Tuesday, October 31st.