MADERA COUNTY – Yosemite and Central Valley area communities are gearing up for Halloween with a whole host of events, from the fun and spooky to the truly terrifying.
Saturday, Oct. 25 fairly bursts with Halloween activities. Perhaps the longest-running Halloween-themed event is the Coarsegold Tarantula Festival, now in its 17th year.
Visitors to the Festival can look forward to tarantula education, tarantula races, hairy leg contests, baking competitions and more. Call the Coarsegold Historic Village at 559-683-3900 for more information on this event.
Service Organization of the Sierras hosts a Spooky Bingo Night on Saturday, Oct. 25, at the Oakhurst Community Center. Doors open at 5 p.m., with bingo beginning at 6:30. A $20 donation buys you dinner and bingo cards. Drinks/cocktails, raffle prizes and door prizes will be available, along with lots of fun! Call Laura Gonzalez at (559)7380 for further information.
Cemeteries and Halloween seem to go together. Take advantage of the opportunity to explore the Yosemite Village Cemetery with a DNC Interpretive Naturalist and discover the graves and historical stories of Galen Clark, George Anderson, Gabriel Sovulewski, Native Americans, and others. Meet in front of the Yosemite Valley Visitor Center with a flashlight for a 90-minute tour offered on Oct. 30 and 31. Free family fun for all ages!
North Fork is the location for a Trunk or Treat and Free Coat Giveaway with free hot dogs and bounce house, on Friday, Oct. 31, from 5 – 7 p.m. at the North Fork Christian Center across from the North Fork Market.
Oakhurst Mountain Lions Club invites you to prepare to be scared during its 7th Annual SCREAMFEST Haunted House, held on Friday, Oct. 31, and Saturday, Nov. 1. This event is not for the squeamish, easily-frightened or for children under 12. The location is at the former Blockbuster building at 40050 Highway 49 (Vons shopping center). Tickets are $10 per person in advance or $12 at the door. Purchase tickets at Oakhurst Feed and Pet Supply or Steve’s Tropical Fish and Pet Supply. Call (559) 683-4475 or (559) 877-2442 for information.
Oakhurst Area Chamber of Commerce holds its annual Halloween Trunk-n-Treat on Friday, Oct. 31, from 5 to 7 p.m. at the Oakhurst College Center. For information or to volunteer as a “trunker,” contact the Chamber at (559)683-7766, www.oakhurstchamber.com.
Also on Halloween night, the Oakhurst Elks Lodge says, “Come in costume for a free drink,” at its Halloween party. The bar opens at 4:30 p.m., with dinner at 6, featuring gruesome burgers and French-fried potato fingers. Cost is $10 per body, and reservations are required by Oct. 29. For reservations or information, call (559)683-2717.
The Chowchilla Fairgrounds invites you to “trick your trunk” during its annual Trunk ‘n’ Treat that day, from 5 to 7 p.m. Prizes of $125 for first, $75 for second and $50 for third go to the most tricked-out trunks. Contact the Chowchilla District Chamber at www.chowchillachamber.org or call (559)665-3728.
The Madera Rotary Club holds a Halloween Fundraiser Ball beginning at 6 p.m. at Hatfield Hall. In addition to a costume ball with prizes for the best in several categories, there will also be outstanding silent and live auction items. Tickets are $55. per person. Attendees must be at least 21 years old. www.maderarotary.org.
For more events around Halloween and any other time, visit www.YosemiteThisYear.com.