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How scared dare you be? Halloween events to suit all ages and fright levels

From the Wild Zoo Halloween to the long-running Haunted Castle and Black Forest, these are the last few days to enjoy area Halloween attractions and events

Thursday, October 25, 2012 - 12:01 am

Fright Night and its zombie invasion have come and gone.

If you have recovered, here are a few more Halloween events and attractions you may want to check out, along with details on trick-or-treat hours:

Trick-or-treat hours

Official hours are 6-8 p.m. Wednesday for residents of Fort Wayne, New Haven, Huntertown and Leo-Cedarville.

In Fort Wayne, city police advise people to turn on a porch or exterior light if they are willing to be visited by trick-or-treaters.

Police also recommend the following safety rules:

•Don't wear costumes that obscure your vision.

•Wear reflective or light-colored clothing so you are visible to motorists.

•Travel in groups including at least one adult.

•Follow a preplanned route.

•Cross streets only at crosswalks.

•Visit homes of people familiar to you, and don't go into a stranger's house.

•Be prepared for bad weather.

•Don't eat any treats until they have been inspected by an adult.

Haunted attractions

Looking to scare up some thrills? Here are a few options:

Haunted Castle and Black Forest, 8965 Auburn Road, just north of Wallen Road.

Organized by the Boy Scouts at St. Vincent Catholic Church, this has been one of the area's top Halloween destinations for years. Costumed youth and adult actors lurk within the Haunted Castle and along the Black Forest trail, just waiting to jump out and scare you.

The attraction's website promises “New scares, new terrors, new paths.” The scary factor usually is too intense for young children.

The attraction is open 7-9 p.m. Thursday, 7-11 p.m. Friday and Saturday, and 7-9 p.m. Sunday through Halloween night.

Tickets are required. Cost is Haunted Castle, $10; Black Forest, $10; and combo ticket for both, $16. You can get $2 off regular price on Thursdays and Sundays by donating a canned food item.

For more information, go to http://hauntedcastle.com.

The Haunted Cave, 4410 Arden Drive, south of Engle Road and west of Ardmore Avenue in southwest Fort Wayne.

Here's how the Cave's website describes what awaits: “Your adventure will begin with a 60-second ride down our Mind Shaft. You will be transported from our toxic storage facility into the bowels of the Haunted Cave. Once you've hit bottom, the real journey begins, as you enter a 2,000-gallon underground cesspool where Eddie resides, and he hasn't eaten in nearly a year.

“From there you will traverse nearly 1/4 -mile of pathways in and out of 16 more rooms, covering 10,000 square feet and ending in our Vortex, which will spin you back up to the surface. From spiders and clowns, morgues and the old West, dot rooms and door rooms, to fog rooms and more, we have a little something for everyone.”

However, the Fort Wayne Jewish Federation has voiced concern about one room being perceived as a Holocaust-style “gas chamber.”

Obviously, this attraction wouldn't be suitable for young children.

Hours are 7-9:30 p.m. today, Sunday, Halloween night and Nov. 1, and 7 p.m.-midnight Friday, Saturday and Nov. 2-3.

Admission is $10, with Fast Pass access $13. Receive $1 off admission by donating one canned food item to Community Harvest Food Bank of Northeast Indiana.

Middle school, high school and college students receive $2 off admission by showing their school ID card on Thursdays and Sundays, and they can receive a free Fast Pass upgrade on Fridays and Saturdays by showing school ID.

For more information, go to www.hauntedcave.com or call 436-0213.

Haunted Hotel: 13th Floor, 511 N. Jefferson St., in downtown Huntington.

Originally a project of the Huntington Jaycees, this attraction now is operated by a group of area haunt enthusiasts.

The haunted features are based on the story of the Warwick Hotel, which reportedly was operated by an eccentric owner, was involved in several people's unsolved disappearances and burned to the ground in October 1904, killing more than 300 people, it says on the attraction's website, www.hauntedhuntington.com.

Visitors today encounter monsters and other characters, but “very low gore and no blood or nudity,” the website says. It also is designed in 3-D and requires wearing 3-D glasses supplied there.

Organizers limit admission to ages 10 and older.

Hours are 7-10 p.m. today and Halloween night, and 7-11 p.m. Friday and Saturday. Admission is $12, with a fast-pass VIP ticket $20.

For information or to buy tickets, go to www.hauntedhuntington.com.

Other attractions

Wild Zoo Halloween, at the Fort Wayne Children's Zoo, 3411 Sherman Blvd., in Franke Park.

This is a hit with young children. Daily activities include collecting treats, exploring mazes, live animal shows, a Pumpkin Patch and more, a news release said.

Special events include a pumpkin-decorating workshop today, free train rides Friday, Princess Day on Saturday, Magic Day on Sunday and seeing zoo animals get pumpkins as treats on Halloween day. Hours are noon-5 p.m. each of those days.

Admission is $8 for children and $4 for adults. Zoo members receive $2 off per person every day. Additional fees are charged for the train ride, pony ride, carnival-style games, bracelet-making and face-painting. Food is available for purchase.

For more information, go to http://kidszoo.org/events/wild-zoo-halloween or call 427-6800.

Steele Farms, 5525 W. Road 300N, about five miles southwest of Decatur.

The highlight is the corn maze. This year, farm owners used GPS technology for the first time to plan and cut the maze, which allowed them to make it “more challenging and entertaining,” it says on their website, www.visitsteelefarms.com.

The maze design features a giant scarecrow. People who find all of the checkpoints hidden in the maze are eligible to put their name in a weekly drawing for gift certificates, the website says.

Other activities on site include pumpkin picking, hayrides, barrel train rides, climbing a straw-bale mountain, seeing farm animals and visiting the farm's market.

Hours are 4-9 p.m. Friday, 11 a.m.-9 p.m. Saturday and 2-7 p.m. Sunday. Maze admission, rides and other purchases are on a cash-only basis. Cost for the corn maze is $6, adults; $5, ages 5-12; and free, ages 4 and younger. Hayrides are free with maze admission. Barrel train rides are $1 per person. Pumpkin prices vary.

For more information and directions, go to www.visitsteelefarms.com or call 1-260-565-3355.

Amazing Maze and Pumpkin Patch, 5398 N. Road 500E, south of Road 600N about three miles west of Kendallville in Noble County.

This attraction features a family maze, smaller haunted maze (open after dark), a greenhouse maze for families with young children, wagon rides, climbing a straw mountain, a pumpkin patch and more, it says on its Facebook page, www.facebook.com/trow bridgefarms.

Hours are 6-11 p.m. Friday and Saturday, and 6-9 p.m. Sunday and Halloween night. Admission for all mazes and the straw mountain is a single price of $5 per person and free, ages 3 and younger. Wagon rides are $2 per person.

For more information, go to www.facebook.com/trowbridge farms or call 1-260-347-4317.

Amazing Fall Fun Corn Maze and Pumpkin Patch, 3150 County Road 43, south of County Road 28 east of Waterloo in DeKalb County.

The 12-acre corn maze features a very intricate design including a full-length Johnny Appleseed picking apples from a tree. Bring a flashlight if you are going after dark.

A new family-friendly Halloween maze featuring special effects also is open after dark on Fridays and Saturdays.

Other activities include picking pumpkins, hayrides, corn hole, climbing a straw mountain and more.

Hours are 6-10 Friday, noon-10 p.m. Saturday and 2-6 p.m. Sunday. The attraction's website, www.amazingfallfun.com, says it closes Oct. 31, but no hours are listed for Halloween day or night.

Admission is on a cash-only basis. Cost for the main maze is $8, ages 13 and older; $6, ages 4-12; and free, ages 3 and younger. Admission for the Halloween maze starts at $6 for adults and $4 for children.

For more information, go to www.amazingfallfun.com or call 1-260-333-2302.

Special events

Frankenstein, Department of Physics, north wing of first floor in Kettler Hall, IPFW, 2101 Coliseum Blvd. E.

See the story of Frankenstein come to life during open houses 5-7 p.m. Friday and 2-4 p.m. Saturday in IPFW's physics department.

During the first hour, faculty, staff and students will offer tours of the department, answer questions and lead interactive physics experiments, a university news release said.

At 6 p.m. Friday and 3 p.m. Saturday, Society of Physics Students will perform “Frankenstein: A Demonstrative Performance.” Seating opens 30 minutes before each performance and is on a first-come, first-seated basis.

Admission is open to the public and is free for both the open house and performance.

Howl O'Ween, Black Pine Animal Sanctuary, 1426 W. Road 300N, about a mile west of Albion in Noble County.

This family-friendly event offers trick-or-treating 4-8 p.m. Saturday among the leopards, lions, tigers and other rescued exotic animals at Black Pine.

Other activities include a bonfire, s'mores, popcorn, and lighted animal exhibits and pathways.

Costumes are welcome, but people wearing very large, brightly colored or unusual costumes that could frighten animals may be restricted from some activities or areas of the sanctuary, a news release said.

Admission is $5 per person for ages 3 and older, and free for ages 2 and younger. Parking is free, and complimentary horse-drawn wagon rides will be offered from the parking area at the nearby 4-H Park.

For information, go to www.blackpine.org or call 1-260- 636-7383.

“Spooktacular” concert, Auer Performance Hall in Rhinehart Music Center at IPFW, 2101 Coliseum Blvd. E.

During the Fort Wayne Philharmonic's Family Series concert at 2 p.m. Sunday, audience members young and old can hear the orchestra perform a variety of spooky music, ranging from Grieg's “In the Hall of the Mountain King” to Andrew Lloyd Webber's “Phantom of the Opera” and Michael Jackson's “Thriller.”

Beginning at 1 p.m., youngsters also can enjoy an instrument playground, face-painting and experiments by Science Central.

Cost is $12 for adults and $6 for children.

Tickets are available by calling 481-0777, at www.fwphil.org, or at the box office at the Arts United Center, 303 E. Main St.