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Halloween on San Juan Island: Get scared (and have a lot of fun doing it)
Friday Harbor is a relatively small town, but its Halloween night might rank up there with much larger communities.
There are a lot of ways to be creative, have fun and be safe.
The San Juan Community Theatre is opening the doors of its costume shop over Halloween — Friday and Saturday, from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.
The costume shop is located in the theater’s Performing Arts Resource Center, or PARC, 70 Saltspring Drive, in the Beaverton Business Park.
This off-site rehearsal and resource building boasts a large and varied collection of costumes. Costume shop manager Marilynn
Findley said a trip to PARC is an opportunity take your Halloween costume to a whole new level.
"When people think of costumes, they tend to think of things they can get online, but our costume shop reflects the productions that the theater has made throughout the years, augmented by donations, so we have a collection as varied as the productions,” she said. “You kind of have to come in with an open mind and construct a fantasy for yourself ... the variety is kind of staggering."
Costumes rent for $25 for adults with a $25 deposit, and $15 for children with a $15 deposit.
Findley encourages people to come equipped with their imaginations. "Adults don't get to play very often ... This is really permission to play."
The Friday Harbor Athletic Association presents a haunted house at 635 Spring St., Friday through Sunday.
Events Chair Callie McKay said there will be face painting and games, such as fish pond and tiger toss, for children 12 and younger. For older children and adults, there will be, as McKay said, "a very dark, very creepy, walk-through attraction." The walk is about 20 minutes long and winds through the classic, haunted house experience.
The house will be open on Friday and Saturday night from 7-10, and on Halloween night from 7-9. Additionally, there will be a "lights-on tour" on Halloween from 6-7 p.m. for those who want to walk the haunted house in a less scary way.
Entrance is $5 for children and students with an ASB card, and $10 for adults and students without a card. Tickets for the "lights-on tour" cost $5 for everyone. All proceeds go to the Athletic Association.
Wolf Hollow ‘Howl’oween Ball
Wolf Hollow Wildlife Rehabilitation Center presents a Costume Ball on Saturday, The ball runs from 6-10 p.m., at the San Juan County Fairgrounds building.
This is “a little bit more of an adult event,” Board President Michelle Loftus said. Beer and wine will be served and a space cleared for people to dance to the evening’s entertainment: The Fabulous Rhythmatics. The Legion Auxiliary will sell burgers.
There is no particular theme to the ball, and indeed attendees are not required to come in costume. However, there will be prizes awarded for costumes under certain categories: Best Wildlife Costume, Best Friday Harbor Costume, and Scariest Costume. Winners will receive Wolf Hollow merchandise and gifts from local merchants.
The competitions do not stop there. There will be an apple pie contest (you get to taste the pies) and a carved pumpkin contest. In a more novel move, the ball will also host a howling contest, which, as Loftus said, is “just what it sounds like — throw back your head and let it rip.”
There will also be a raffle with high-end prizes like a mini vacation to the West Beach Resort on Orcas. Photographer Alan Niles from Cascade Photographics will be there to capture the fun.
The funds from the ball will go toward Wolf Hollow general maintenance expenses and the new seabird pools, which will accommodate rescued seabirds.
Early bird tickets are $20 at Animal Inn, Friday Harbor Pet Supply and Griffin Bay Books. Tickets purchased at the door are $25.
“I think it will be a lot of fun,” Loftus said.
Trick or treating
The town will be geared up for trick or treating and Halloween partying on Sunday.
Robin DeLaZerda at the Sheriff's Department said certain neighborhoods are known for having more participating households: Rose Street, Spruce Street, and The Oaks have good reputations and are fairly well lit.
As safety is a priority for those at the Sheriff's Department, DeLaZerda has a few recommendations to make sure that trick or treating stays as safe as it is fun.
"I'm a strong believer that a parental pair of eyes can go a long way," DeLaZerda said. And make sure children have reflective material on their clothes.
Glow sticks help make children more visible.
"The San Juan County Sheriff's Office supplies glow sticks at Halloween, usually through the schools. The idea is to keep our children safe in the streets and visible to oncoming traffic," DeLaZerda said.
"Due to Halloween being on a Sunday this year, we will not be giving them away through the schools as in the past. The Sheriff's Office will be supplying glow sticks on Sunday; just come by and pick one up. While supplies last. Each island will have them available for pick up. San Juan Masonic Lodge No. 175 has kindly funded this program for the past two years."
Island Rec hosts its 11th annual Halloween party on Sunday, 7:30-10 p.m., in the San Juan County Fairgrounds main building.
The event is free and open to those age 12 through high school.
Island Rec Director Sally Thomsen said the party is usually crowded and a lot of fun. "There will be a DJ, food, a dance contest, a costume contest and other games," she said.
Highlights include a big graffiti wall, and glow-in-the-dark volley ball. The Kiwanis Club will provide free candy. King’s Market and the high school PTSA will help underwrite the event.
As this is an Island Rec event, it will be supervised and attendees will be asked to sign in. Dressing up is encouraged, but not required.