Holidays

The Best Kid-Friendly Halloween Fun in Denver

A wild baby lion roaming free during Boo at the Zoo.
A wild baby lion roaming free during Boo at the Zoo. Linnea Covington
With the parties, costumes, fun in the dark, silly monsters, a sense of fear and excitement, and, of course, so much candy, Halloween is one of the best times of the year for children. Family-friendly activities surrounding this ghoulish holiday abound. No matter how you like to celebrate, there's something for every family. From daytime trick-or-treating to spooky movies to Halloween animals, take the kids out for some holiday fun this month.

Butterfly Pavilion’s Annual Bugtober Festival
6252 West 104th Avenue, Westminster
Through October 31
303-469-5441

Some people find bugs terrifying, but whether you do or don't, check out the Butterfly Pavilion's creepy-crawly Bugtober Festival. From now until October 31, the spine-tingling arachnid pavilion will be erected in the center of the butterflies; it's a space where large orb weaver spiders spin beautiful webs almost big enough to catch a toddler. For those looking for a Halloween bent, participate in Bug-a-Boo trick-or-treating on October 26 and 27 from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. There's also an after-hours flashlight tour through the special exhibits on October 25 and 26 at 5:30, 6 and 6:30 p.m., an up-close-and-personal encounter with cicadas in the Katydid Experience, and a look at the master illusionists of the invertebrate world who naturally blend into their surroundings. Tickets start at $8 for children and go up to $13.

click to enlarge Trick-or-treating during Fright Fest at Elitch Gardens. - ELITCH GARDENS
Trick-or-treating during Fright Fest at Elitch Gardens.
Elitch Gardens
Elitch Gardens' Fright Fest
2000 Elitch Circle
Saturdays and Sundays in October, noon to 5 p.m.
303-595-4386

Wander the haunted theme park by day to give your kids a fun and contained Halloween experience. Of course there will be treats, too, and everyone should come in costume to wander the Trick or Treat Trail in KiddieLand. There's also creepy coloring, a screaming contest and scary-oke. Visit the park from 12 to 5 p.m. on Saturday and Sunday for the rest of October; just keep in mind that KiddieLand closes at 6 p.m., and that's when the park's scarier events begin.

Malloween and Scary Movies at the Orchard Town Center
14697 Delaware Street, Westminster
Fridays in October, 6:30 to 8:30 p.m.

In Westminster, visitors at the Orchard Town Center can get into the spirit of Halloween with a funky parade, dance party and trick-or-treating extravaganza on Saturday, October 19, from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. Bring a non-perishable food donation to get a free goodie bag and enjoy the festivities. And if you head to the center on Fridays in October from 6:30 to 8:30 p.m., your little ones can take in a free spooky movie including Hocus Pocus on October 18 and Halloween Town on October 25.

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Linnea Covington moved back to Denver after spending thirteen years in New York City and couldn't be happier to be home, exploring the Mile High and eating as much as possible, especially when it involves pizza or ice cream.
Contact: Linnea Covington