Get ready for some 'Halloween Hoopla' at the Becker County Fairgrounds this Saturday, Oct. 31! In conjunction with the final day of the Halloween Haunted House hosted by the Becker County Museum and Midwest Paranormal Files, several local charitable organizations and businesses are joining forces to offer a full slate of "COVID-friendly" activities.
"Everything is being canceled this year," said Holmes Theatre Executive Director Amy Stoller Stearns. "This is our attempt to bring back a little bit of normalcy to the season — but do it as safely as possible."
This means that masks will be required — whether indoors or outdoors — and visitors are asked to respect all pandemic safety precautions, including social distancing and handwashing.
From 1 to 4 p.m., there will be kids' crafts and games set up at the fairgrounds, for family groups of six people or less.
"Most of the activities are free, but some of the crafts will cost between $1 and $5," said Becker County Museum Director Becky Mitchell.
There will also be several local musicians performing throughout the festivities, including Tim Eggebraaten, Jacob Woody and Stephanie Schindler.
Then from 3 to 5 p.m., Minnesota Flyers Gymnastics will be hosting a "Trunk or Treat" event in their parking lot. Local individuals, organizations and businesses are invited to bring their Halloween-bedecked car trunks and hand out treats to kids and families, free of charge.
"Anyone in the community who wants to come out, decorate a (car) trunk and hand out some treats is welcome," says Minnesota Flyers office manager Kari Wendt. "There's no cost to participate."
To reserve your spot for the trunk or treat, call the Minnesota Flyers gym at 218-847-3637 and either speak with someone in the office, or leave a message. The event is open to all local kids and families.
At 6 p.m., the Detroit Lakes Jaycees' beer garden will open, and at 7 p.m., the Holmes Theatre will be hosting a concert featuring the Twin Cities-based Graveyard Club.
"They have a synth-pop, haunted sound — a dance-friendly, spooky vibe that's perfect for Halloween," says Stearns.
Though dancing is allowed, she added, they are asking that social distancing safety guidelines be observed throughout the festivities.
In other words, "no large group dancing, or switching partners," Mitchell said.
"Our being able to host events like this is 100% about how the community behaves," Stearns cautioned. "So please cooperate and remember to abide by all COVID-19 safety guidelines."
Also at 7 p.m., the Haunted House that is being co-hosted by the museum and Midwest Paranormal Files will open for the fourth and final time (additional haunted house tours were set for Oct. 23, 24 and 30 from 7 to 10 p.m.). Tours will be offered for $10 per person, until 10 p.m.
"Tour groups will be restricted to four people or less," Mitchell said, "and there is no touching allowed."
The band will be performing until approximately 9 p.m., and the beer garden will remain open throughout the evening's festivities.
Costumes are encouraged, not required for visitors — but please remember to wear a protective mask as part of your ensemble, Mitchell added.