As parents of tweens and teens know, it’s hard to find fall activities that your child will enjoy with the rest of the family, and Halloween can be especially tricky to navigate these days. With costumes that regularly begin with the words “bad” or “sexy,” it may feel like this holiday is just a lost cause once your kid creeps into the double digits and the arguments over appropriate costumes begin. However, there are many ways you can still have fun with your tween, teenager, young adult or whatever it is your child wants to be called for Halloween 2013. There are many Halloween events near Chicago that even this difficult age range will enjoy and want to attend again and I have rounded up the most fun and unique family-friendly Chicago Halloween events.
Here are the top five Halloween activities near Chicago that you can enjoy with your tween or teen:
1. Haunted Harbor Haunted House. The Bolingbrook Park District has turned Pelican Harbor over to the ghouls for Halloween and will be hosting its first ever Haunted Harbor. The bathhouse has been transformed into a funeral home that guests will be guided through, and those who make it back outside will be treated to an interactive cemetery and an assortment of hearses to view, but hopefully not ride in. This is a great event for all kids ages 9+ and is perfect for family fun with your tween or teen. Tickets can be bought at the door for $10 each and includes admission to the indoor waterpark. You can bring your bathing suits and spend the evening swimming while watching Hocus Pocus, or you can save the waterpark passes for more family fun another day. Haunted Harbor will run on October 25th-26th from 5-10 pm. Pelican Harbor is located at 200 Lindsey Lane in Bolingbrook. For more information about the Bolingbrook Park District visit www.bolingbrookparks.org
2. Six Flags Great America Fright Fest 2013. Running weekends now through Halloween, Fright Fest delivers Halloween fun for the whole family, even the sulkiest of teens. Many rides have been re-themed for the event, and the park is amazingly themed. They also feature a parade, a ride graveyard for past attractions, walkthrough scare zones and hard-ticketed haunted houses. For those who love nostalgia, stop by the Demon and enjoy the original themed music that played on the ride in its early days and the original theming that was removed from the front of the ride after it was deemed “too scary” in the 80’s. Coupons are currently available on coke cans and at Saver’s Thrift Stores. For more information about Fright Fest 2013 check outhttp://frightfest.sixflags.com
3. The Running Dead: A Zombie 5k. On October 26th you can either play a zombie and chase runners or choose to run a 5k away from zombies. It’s a fun way to get the family out and active, and there are prizes for four different age ranges, including the 14-25 range. There are several different races available to run in, and the race is open to anyone age 11 and up. There is also a zombie after party and prom the night of the race. Nothing says family time more than yelling “Braaaaaains” and chasing down dinner together! For more information, check out Http://therunningdeadchicago.com
4. Chicago Weird & Haunted Tours. The Weird Chicago tours are an excellent way to sneak some historical education into your Halloween fun. You board a bus and are chauffeured around Chicago and parts of Chicagoland to visit sites that are supposedly haunted, and these sites are typically of historical significance. Along the way, you learn interesting trivia and information about many of the historic sites you will be visiting. While the actual sites visited may vary on the night of your tour, the tour typically includes the site of the Eastland Disaster, the Valentine’s Day Massacre and Resurrection Cemetery amongst many others. It’s a fun, spooky time and a great way to spark interest in Chicago history for your teen or tween. Tickets are $20 a person for 12 and under and $30 a person for ages 13 and up. For more information, check outwww.wierdchicago.com
5. Zombie Safari Hayrides. The Odyssey Fun Farm in Tinley Park is offering Zombie Safari Hayrides from 7pm-Midnight on weekends in October. For $20 a person, you get a gun rental, 100 paintballs and a hayride through a field full of real zombies that need to be put out of their misery. There is no better way to bond with your child than shooting blood thirsty zombies together. Don’t worry, the zombies won’t shoot back, so there is very little chance that your tween daughter’s hair will get messed up or “ruined.” Lines get long later in the night, so try to arrive early and the earlier in the month you visit, the smaller the crowds will be. For more information check outwww.odysseyfunfarm.com
Looking for more Fall Halloween events? Do you know what the top five pumpkin farms in Chicago are? Click HERE for the answer!