Published October 14th, 2021 at 11:00 AM
Family-friendly, fun and fancy and much freakier options are out there for anyone looking to get in on fall festivities before haunted house lines are long and the pumpkin patches are picked over.
Here’s what’s happening at October’s halfway mark.
5 – 9 p.m. Bring the entire family to Cornucopia: KC’s Ultimate Fall Festival for a full weekend of food, fun and all things fall. The three-day party across the Power & Light District, surrounding KC Live!, 50 E.13th St., starts with carnival rides Friday night on Grand Boulevard and continues with live music and art, local vendors, pony rides and more through Sunday. Be sure to check online for a full schedule of events and maps. Cornucopia is free to attend and open to all ages.
7 – 10 p.m. Start looking for Day of the Dead makeup tutorials, Día de los Muertos: La Fiesta is Friday night at Crossroads Hotel’s XR Cafe, 2101 Central St. The free party will explore cultural traditions of the Mexican holiday dedicated to celebrating the lives of loved ones who have died. The colorful evening will have Mariachi tunes, plus music from Trio Aztlan and puppetry from StoneLion Puppet Theatre. If you’re in need of a steady hand, complimentary face paintings are available on site. The cafe has plans for specialty drinks and bites. Attire is “creative Día de los Muertos”.
8 p.m. How do you know it’s officially Halloween season? Rocky Horror Show Live returns to Kansas City this week and will make its premiere at The Black Box in the West Bottoms, 1060 Union Ave. This year’s show is more of an experience. In addition to the musical, get in on photo ops, fire pits, art installations and, most fun of all, audience participation. If you want to check out Friday’s rendition of the Richard O’Brien classic, grab tickets fast, as space is limited. Consider dressing up as your favorite Rocky Horror character, audience members are also encouraged to bring their own chair for the outdoor performance. Tickets are $30.
9 a.m. If you’re a fan of basketball and can’t wait for NCAA and NBA action to get started, there should be some quality hoops straight out of the community this weekend at Hy-Vee Arena, 1800 Genessee St. That’s where Kevin Garnett’s Hoop It Up City of Ballers 3 on 3 Tournament will take place, plus more. The public is invited to watch local teams across multiple age and skill levels compete for the chance to move on to the Hoop It Up National Championship Dec. 4 in Arizona. There will also be a dunk contest, skills challenges and live music. The tournament is free to attend.
1 – 5 p.m. Craft beer, live music and an afternoon along the Missouri River make Parkville’s Microbrew Fest a must for beer lovers. The setup at English Landing Park, 8701 McAfee St., will offer pours from more than 70 breweries, plus beer-related merch and plenty to eat. Get in on the good stuff for $40 before Saturday at 11 a.m. or for $50 at the gate. All guests will receive a commemorative tasting class.
6:30 – 11 p.m. Carved is coming to Riverside, Missouri, for a one-night-only haunted experience in Renner Brenner Park, 2901 N.W. Vivion Road. Those brave enough to step into the trees can explore a haunted trail or spooky kids trail, sit down with fortune tellers, watch fire performers and magicians and more. The haunted trail is $15 and a sit down with the fortune teller is $20. Everything else is free.
8 p.m. Want to feel the terror of coming face to face with messed-up movie characters like Michael Myers or Freddy Krueger? Set aside a night to walk through the Macabre Cinema haunted house in the West Bottoms, 1222 W. 12th St. The four-story abandoned movie theater that’s been converted into a nightmare-scenario space for anyone afraid of scary movies, puts its customers in the thick of horror film classics from “The Mummy” to “Hellraiser” and a lot in between. Tickets start at $27.
10 a.m. – 4 p.m. The Deanna Rose Farmstead, 13800 Switzer Road, is hooking up local little ones with a full day of Halloween fun at Pumpkin Hollow. Activities include a hayride to the hollow, a little old-fashioned playtime on the hay pile, a spider web maze and, of course, picking out the perfect pumpkin to take home. Checking out Pumpkin Hollow is $10 for non-members and $9 for Friends of the Farmstead, plus the cost of Deanna Rose entry ($3).
10 a.m. – 4 p.m. Get the good boy or girl in the car and take a ride to the 27th Annual Dogtober Fest by Jackson County Parks and Rec. The Kemper Outdoor Education Center, 8201 S. Jasper Bell Road, is expecting hundreds of four-legged friends to participate in activities like the best trick, best kisses and best Halloween costume contests. More than 75 booths will be in the park offering pet photos, pet sitter, rescue resources and much more. The event is free to attend, but a dog food donation is appreciated.
2 – 4 p.m. Mid America Freedom Band, a group “dedicated to providing a safe space for instrumental performance opportunities, outreach, and social advocacy when it comes to music and the LGBTQ+ community,” will open its 19th season with These Tryin’ Times Sunday afternoon at The Gem Theater, 1615 E. 18th St. The concert is $10 to attend.