By Jan Boston Sellers
It is the last weekend before Halloween, and there are lots of fun, safe activities locals can participate in this weekend and up until the big dress-up day itself. I have listed 10 events that readers may want to participate in, beginning this weekend and lasting through Halloween evening. At least two attractions are within a day’s drive. The other eight are occurring right here in our county.
1. Zoo Ghouls at Grassmere is a “ghostly gala of giving and spooktacular family fun,” according to organizers who say it features a monster lab, gypsy mystery maze, haunted hayride, trick or treat trail and a “scary go round.” This event is held at the Nashville Zoo. More information about this Halloween event is available by visiting their website at www.nashvillezoo.org.
2. Ruby Falls, less than 100 miles away, is featuring its annual Haunted Caverns again this Halloween. There is a 26 floor “Helevator” which opens up into a ghostly, bottom, cavern with “paranormal cave dwellers” who don’t appreciate visitors in their domain…260 feet below the earth’s surface. Check out their website at www.rubyfalls.com for ticket prices and hours.
3. Autumn Acres, just off I-40 on Baier Rd. in Cumberland County, is one of the area’s must see places for families. Featuring corn mazes, pirate’s playgrounds, chicken coops, a straw crawl and a host of other activities as well as concessions and souvenirs, this is a great place for the entire family to have some fall fun. The website address is www.autumnacres.org if you need more information.
4. Also, this weekend, the Stone Memorial High School’s Panther Players will perform “GhostCashers,” a spoof of the film Ghostbusters. Panther Players will present their 2012 show at 7 p.m. this Friday and Saturday nights in the SMHS auditorium. Ticket costs are $5 per person.
6. The Art Circle Public Library will be showing Murder by Death, a vintage 1976 movie featuring Peter Sellers and Peter Falk. The comedic mystery is centered on an isolated mansion and a $1 million dollar payoff. The movie will be shown Tuesday, Oct. 30, at 10 am.
7. The TAD Center’s annual Say Boo to Drugs party is slated for Tuesday, Oct. 30, from 3:30 to 5:30 p.m. at the center. This free event features a 4:30 p.m. costume contest with a $100 cash prize to the first place winner, $75 to second, $50 to third place and $25 to the fourth place winner. Say Boo to Drugs will also include bobbing for apples, free treat bags for all participants and other games and contests. There is no admission fee, and costumes are not required to participate. Call the TAD Center at 456-2859 for more information. Say Boo to Drugs is held each year in conjunction with the annual Red Ribbon Week Celebration, which began on Sunday. Red Ribbon Week is designed to encourage communities to show their support for drug-free neighborhoods.
Halloween Night, which falls on a Wednesday this year, will find several church sponsored events:
8. Central Baptist Church, off 127 South, will host its annual trunk or treat. Kids may walk through the parking lot of the church and show off their costumes as they “trick or treat” at vehicles. Trunk or treat begins at 5:15 and lasts until 7:30 p.m. at Central Baptist.
9. Cumberland Fellowship’s annual Family Fall Festival, which attracted thousands upon thousands of people from the area, will begin at 6 p.m. Halloween night at the Cumberland County Community Complex. It will last until 9 and will feature games, food, music and fun. This is a free event also.
10. First United Methodist Church will host SpiritFest 2012 from 5 to 8 p.m. Wednesday night. This event will be held at the church on Braun St. and will include trunk or treat, costume contest, food and games.
Reminder: If you are going door to door this Halloween, please follow these safety tips:
• Make sure costumes are illuminated with something so children are easily seen.
• Check all candy before eating it.
• Knock only at lighted houses.
• Watch for trick or treaters on the roads and report any suspicious activities to law enforcement.
Cumberland County High School and Stone Memorial High School will play their last games of the 2012 season Friday night. The CCHS Jets are home for Senior Night 2012. They will host White County. Kickoff will be at 7 p.m. The Panthers will travel to Scott County. That game is scheduled to kick off at 6:30 p.m.