Your One-Stop Guide to a Family-Friendly Halloween In Lansing
Fall is finally in the air in mid-Michigan and that means – time to think about pumpkin spice, apple cider, and Halloween.
I love to celebrate the holidays with my kids and have to confess that Halloween probably gets the most attention. It’s still warm enough to take even my youngest child outside, yet cool enough that we don’t work up a sweat having fun.
There is no shortage of fun-filled Halloween events in Lansing, no matter which area you call home. You can go boo at the zoo or make fun crafts. My favorite, though, is collecting my Mom Tax from visiting several trunk-or-treat events and trick-or-treating in our neighborhood.
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Put Your Costumes on and Gather Treats at the Zoo, Trunk or Treats, and Events
You wouldn’t know it now, but I wasn’t really into Halloween until I had kids. Then I suddenly loved dressing up and picking out family costumes every year.
Now that we have such awesome costumes, we need to show them off as much as possible.
My family’s favorite Halloween tradition is going to Boo at the Zoo at Potter Park Zoo. Nowadays, this is the only time other than Halloween Night that my entire family dresses up.
We love walking around the zoo to see the spooky decorations in the animal enclosures while gathering up great treats. They have so many other fun activities to do there that we can easily spend all day.
In addition to dressing up for going to the zoo, there are so many other options for Halloween fun in mid-Michigan. Even someone as ambitious as I am can’t make it to everything, so you’ll definitely need to take your time selecting what sounds best for your family.
We always try to hit at least two trunk or treat events in Lansing. There are so many to choose from that it’s impossible to hit them all. If you get lucky, you can find a couple close to each other at the same time and hit more than one in one outing. That’s how you really cash in on the Mom Tax!
Some trunk or treats are very small. It truly is just walking through the parking lot and collecting candy from some very awesomely decorated cars. For others, that’s just a small part of the fun.
At Trunk or Treat at Okemos Community Church, for example, kids can also enjoy inflatables, hot dogs and other activities. It’s always my mission to find the “best” one every year.
Halloween Night Fun
As October 31 approaches, try something new this year with your family. Similar to Christmastime, drive around town and look for spooky houses. You can make a scavenger hunt list of what you think you’ll see, like tombstones, mummies, cobwebs, and ghosts.
Whoever finds the most things on their list wins! I am definitely putting this on our activity list this year.
If it’s Halloween Night in mid-Michigan, you can almost guarantee that the weather will be less than perfect. Since I’m always determined to show off our stellar costumes, we bundle up and trek around the neighborhood regardless of the weather.
Are you heading out like me and not sure of the time? The official trick-or-treating window for most areas is 6:00 PM until 8:00 PM. There are a few exceptions so be sure to check our big list to verify your area’s time.
If you’re not as crazy as I am and want to stay warm and dry on Halloween, there are always plenty of indoor options. I’ve always considered checking out one of these, like Trunk or Treat at Encounter Church in Jackson. But I just cannot call it Halloween if we are not outside suffering in the cold, rain, sleet or snow.
Think of me and smile when you’re nice and warm!
Who Needs All This Candy?
After your kids are in a sugar coma and you’ve collected your Mom Tax, it’s time to figure out what to do with the rest of their loot.
Last year, I was able to successfully convince my kids to take some of their hauls to one of the candy buy-backs in Grand Rapids. We’ve started to get a few places here in Lansing, like Derksen Dentistry, that is doing this. I can’t wait to see how many more join the list since it’s so popular.
My kids were thrilled to get cash for their piggy banks and I was happy to get some of that sugar out of our house without tears. Plus we got to feel good about donating our candy to the troops overseas. Everyone wins!
No matter how many or few festivities you attend, enjoy making Halloween memories with your kids!