Although it’s not October yet, Halloween is on my mind. My kids have already picked out their costumes, and we’ve been visiting our local “Spirit Halloween” store all the time. Last year, we attended Oaks Park’s haunted drive-through. This year, we hope to do some traditional trick-or-treating but aren’t sure yet. We are still exploring our local options. With that said, here are some fun things happening around Portland for the Halloween season.
For a few days in late October (23rd, 24th, and the 28th-31st), the Oregon Zoo is having an event called “Howloween.” There will be a scavenger hunt and treat bags available for purchase at the end of the hunt. Kiddos ages 2-12 are welcome to attend and wear costumes. Tickets will go on sale beginning on Oct. 14th. Here is the link for more info: https://www.oregonzoo.org/events/howloween-0.
Happy Valley Farmer’s Market-
On Oct. 30th, there will be a trick-or-treat event at Happy Valley Farmer’s Market. There will be over 100 vendors, live music, shopping, and food available. A pumpkin carving station and special surprises will take place as well. The event takes place between 9 a.m.- 2 p.m. For more info, head to this link: https://m-partners.facebook.com/events/549657656250310.
Museum of Mystery Family Halloween Event-
This event is free and is available every day between September 20th through Nov. 5th. A local artist named Mike Bennett has created 26 life-size monsters, cryptids, and mythical beasts and has them on display in St. John’s old Bank of America building in North Portland. Games, prizes, and educational videos about the monsters are all available in this interactive exhibit. For more info like the address and hours, head to this link: https://www.koin.com/community/calendar/?_escaped_fragment_=/show/?start=2018-07-02#!/details/Museum-of-Mystery-Family-Halloween-Event/9433795/2021-10-24T10.
Kids Monster Fest-
The Memorial Coliseum is holding an event called “Kids Monster Fest.” This is a haunted house experience aimed toward kids under twelve years old. Guests receive a “magic device” that will frighten any ghouls or monsters away. The event is available on Oct. 23rd and 24th. Tickets are $8 apiece or $40 for a family pack of up to 8 people. Proof of vaccination or a negative covid test is required for guests over twelve years old. It sounds like a lot of fun! Here is the link: https://www.kidsmonsterfest.com/.
A classic movie called “Halloweentown” was filmed right here in Oregon. Between September 18th and Oct. 31st, the town of St. Helens is busy with locals and non-local visitors who come to visit to explore the nostalgia and memorabilia of “Halloweentown.” There are scavenger hunts, photo ops, the “big pumpkin” from the movie, and the haunted house/hotel to explore. This long-standing tradition is supposed to be a ton of fun (sad to say, I’ve never been there!) Here is the link to the attractions and schedule: https://spiritofhalloweentown.com/.
Halloween in Willamette-
On Halloween, several businesses will be handing out treats in a “safe trick-or-treating environment.” There will also be an opportunity to judge the carved pumpkins that the businesses have done. It takes place from 4-8 p.m. No RSVP or tickets are required. Here is the link for more information: http://www.historicwillamette.com/2021/10/31/58570/halloween-in-willamette.
There is a large variety of pumpkin patches in Portland, and any one of them would be a great place to spend a day during the Halloween season. Among the pumpkin patches are 1) Plumper pumpkin patch and tree farm 2) Topaz farm 3) Bella Organic 4) Fazio Farm 5) Sauvie Island pumpkin patch 6) Roloff farm 7) Fir Point farm 8) The Flower Farmer 8) Mr. Tree’s pumpkin patch. For more info, head to this link: https://www.travelportland.com/region/pumpkin-patches/.
As we get closer and closer to Halloween, more events are likely to pop up. If you are looking for something to do, I would recommend scouring your favorite businesses on social media and seeing if they have plans to celebrate Halloween, asking families within your school and neighborhood for suggestions, and watching the news as it gets closer to the holiday. Some families will choose to trick-or-treat, some will attend formal events, and some may decide to celebrate at home. Our little family is excited to get out and about this year while still mindful of covid safety. My 6-year-old son said, “Mom…do I have to wear a mask under my costume mask??” What an abnormal world we are living in right now. Best of luck to you all in finding a fun Halloween celebration for your family!
Stephanie McCoy was born and raised in Portland, Oregon-where she still lives. She recently graduated with a Master’s in Education degree from Concordia University. In her free time: she likes to read and write, get outdoors, embrace her kiddos and husband, and watch travel documentaries.