Welcoming Fall Without the Scary Feel: 7 Alternatives to Halloween in Honolulu



PumpkinsIf you choose not to observe Halloween as a matter of religious belief or personal preference, the county offers various fun and family-friendly alternatives to enjoy. Below are seven events that opt-out from Halloween's scary feel, which can be a bridge to build a positive, relationship-building experience.

1.) Fall Harvest 2014. Every Saturday and Sunday in October starting Oct. 4, from 9 a.m.- 5 p.m., the Waimānalo Country Farms is open to public free of charge. Activities like hayride, cow train and pumpkin catapult are available for $3 to $6. The farm also offers fresh roasted corn and cornbread. You can reach them at (808) 306-4381.

2.) Aloun Farms Pumpkin Festival. Every Saturday and Sunday in October starting Oct. 11, from 8:30 a.m. to 5 p.m., the Aloun Farms in Kapolei is open to public for $3 admission. Admission is free for kids 2 years and younger. The farm offers hayride, games, pumpkins, Ewa corn, kabocha and sunflowers among others. Aloun Farms is a great alternative for those in the leeward side of the island. You can reach them at (808) 677-9516 for more information.

3.) The River of Dreams at Ewa Beach Public and School Library. Does your family enjoy puppetry and storytelling? If you do, The River of Dreams might excite you. On October 22, Wednesday, Ben Moffat, together with the University of Hawaii at Manoa's Fine Arts graduate students, will render a 35-minute presentation of stilts, music and movements. Moffat, a theatre professor at Windward Community College, has performed across the United States and around the world as a solo storyteller and with the dance-theatre troupe, Monkey Waterfall. The River of Dreams is tailored for ages 3 and older. You may call the Ewa Beach Public & School Library at (808) 689-1204 for details. The presentation will start at 10:30 a.m.

4.) Pumpkin Carving Festival Family Day. On October 25,  Saturday, from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m., The Windward Mall in Kaneohe will have a pumpkin carving event featuring a local artist who will carve a 600-pound Big Island pumpkin. For those who want to carve their own pumpkins during or after the presentation, the management offers a kit complete with pumpkin, carving kit and stencils for an affordable price. The audience may also avail a pumpkin family package that starts at $35. Those interested should make a reservation before the event at (808) 945-1005.

5.) Not-So-Scary Halloween Stories. Also on October 25, the McCully-Moiliili Public Library along South King Street will have Susie Roth, known as "The Fairy Godmother", to tell not-so-scary stories for kids in preschool through 2nd grade. This free event will run from 10:30 a.m. to 11:15 a.m. Kids must be accompanied by a parent or caregiver to be admitted. Call (808) 973-1099 for details.

6.) Hallelujah Night at Moanalua. On October 31, the First Assembly of God in Red Hill is giving life to its yearly Hallelujah night raining with games and candies without any grotesque costumes. Families with 6th graders and younger are encouraged to come for family photo and other activities. You may contact the organizer at (808) 836-2300 for inquiries.

7.) YMCA Family Camp at Camp Erdman. For an uninterrupted family time and valuable memories, the YMCA of Honolulu is offering a weekend stay at Camp Erdman in Waialua. The event runs from October 31, Friday, at 3:30 p.m. to November 2, Sunday, at 2:30 p.m. Activities include kayaking, arts and crafts, archery, tower climbing and more. Rates start at $140 per person. Contact YMCA at (808) 637-8874 for registration and other inquiries.

While you may find some downsides to celebrating Halloween, you can choose to turn the holiday into a positive, family-relationship-building tradition. With some touches of creativity, the aforementioned alternatives can pave to meaningful connections, enjoyment and relaxation.



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