The stores may have had plastic pumpkins and princess costumes on sale since the Fourth of July, but for me the cooler weather and the official start of fall this week signal time to start thinking about Halloween. I haven’t decided on a costume for my son yet, and I’m not sure whether he is old enough for trick or treating (he’s only two), but one thing I know we will do is check out the “World’s Largest Halloween Party”  at the Louisville Zoo.
Having just moved to town, I have never been to the Louisville Zoo’s party before, but last year my family and I attended the “Boo at the Zoo,” a similar event at New Orleans’ Audobon Zoo . The set-up is perfect for very young kids to experience Halloween in a “not-so-scary” environment, while older kids can participate in games and activities beyond simply accumulating candy (although there is candy too, of course!).
The “World’s Biggest Halloween Party” will be held October 5-7, 11-14, 18-21 and 25-28. The zoo will close to regular visitors at 3 pm and re-open for the party from 5 to 8:30 pm. Tickets are $8 at the zoo or online  starting October 1. Discounted advance tickets can be purchased for $6.50 at area Meijer stores starting September 28. Louisville Zoo members can attend for free the first two weekends or for half-price ($4) the last two weekends. Member tickets are available at the zoo or online.
Attractions will include:
- Trick or treating for kids 11 and under
- Costumed characters
- Meijer’s Pirate’s Cove
- Monster Color’s Mumpkin the Giant Talking Pumpkin
- KESPT’s Super Hero City
- PNC’s Grow Up Great Storybook Land
- Subway’s Land of Oz
- Ford’s Ogre Swamp
For an additional fee, you can try:
- Not-So-Haunted Carousel ($2 per person)
- 4-D theater experience with Dora and Diego’s 4-D adventure ($5 per person/$4 Zoo members)
- The Headless Horseman of Sleepy Hollow Tour ($2 per person)
Kids are encouraged to wear costumes. Adults may also wear costumes, but may not wear masks. All costumes should be family friendly (i.e., not too scary). In an effort to be green, the zoo will not hand out plastic bags for trick or treating, so trick or treaters should bring their own bags.
Photo: Courtesy of Louisville Zoo