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Shelby County has bucketfuls of Halloween treats

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By Beth Herrinton-Hodge

Shelby County friends have no shortage of activities to mark the Halloween season.

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There are family events at local farms and at the library, scary haunts on Main Street and at Red Orchard Park, a costume party fundraiser for local animal-rescue agencies and the usual candy gathering around trick-or-treating and trunk-or-treating sites.

For those who get too much candy (can there ever be too much candy?), you’ll find a candy buy-back event with all goodies donated to U.S. troops serving abroad. Grab your calendars, and your costumes, and check out these local Halloween-themed events.

 

Scary haunts

Are you looking for a good scare this Halloween? Look no farther than Main Street or Kentucky Street for frightful scares and mysteries.

Haunted on Main, at 610 Main St. in Shelbyville is a new haunted site that has been dressed up in scary attire to warn shoppers of its presence. Mystery lies behind its darkly curtained doors and windows, but signs beckon the curious who are brave enough to enter. The MainStreetKy.com web site boasts, “Come join us as we guide you through haunted graves, and ghost-filled mazes. Unlike traditional haunted houses where you must truly expect the unexpected. With over 15 professional actors and actresses, you can expect to be truly entertained [or horrified].”

If your bravery is boosted in numbers, grab a group of friends to form a scavenger hunt team. Teams work together to solve haunted mysteries and can win cash and prizes. On Halloween night, there is a costume party featuring live DJ Dre Vice, recording artist Juelz, and others.

There is an entry fee of $10 for adults and $7 for children. Groups of five are $25.

The traditional scarefest at Red Orchard Park is back. This year, Blood Orchard Darkness Reborn, is being staged from 7 p.m. until 11 p.m. Fridays and Saturdays, for a cost of $10 per person.

This isn’t for children under 10 years old, because it’s scary.

The ghost-filled spectacular moves to the trails of Red Orchard Park, as people brave a haunted hayride in the dark of the night.

Here’s the description: “So out of the barn and into the woods, disturbing ghouls await you. The smell of decay, the blood curdling screams, the disembodied parts of those who didn’t make it will all be waiting to see…. if you can handle the trail!”

 

Family friendly

Where else can you expect to go to find family-friendly events but to the Shelby County Public Library? The library has lined up an array of storytelling events and parties for adults and children alike, starting with a Family Fun Day with Cambo the Clown on Saturday. Children are invited to dress in their Halloween costumes and come out to play under the trees at the library.

There’s also the opportunity to bring a blanket or a chair and gather on the front lawn of the library for an evening of storytelling. The library welcomes Thomas Freese, storyteller, artist, and author, who will share his “Witch Tales” to entertain children and adults. That’s at 6-7:15 p.m. Thursday. In case of bad weather, the event will move indoors to the Hudson Room.

The Halloween Bash and Trick-or-Treating at JCTC, Shelby Campus, at 5-7 p.m. next Friday is all about costumes, trick-or-treating and more.

“This annual event is our gift to the community,” said John Wieland, director of the Shelby Campus. “We invite children and families to come and check us out! We love to let the local community see what we have going on here at the college.”

Instructor Autumn Betts adds, “What makes our Halloween Bash different from other events is that it’s completely free. It’s a gathering for the whole community, children and adults alike.”

 

Farm visits with fall fun

Shelby County boasts not one but two working farms that open their gates to visitors. Both sites offer farm fun and Kentucky Farm Market shopping for local produce and fresh goodies.

Mulberry Orchard, 1330 Mulberry Pike, Shelbyville, 40065, 502-655-2633

Hours: Wednesday-Saturday 9-6, Sunday 1-5.

Mulberry Orchard opened for business just over a year ago, and owners Matt and Amanda Gajdzik have planted 15 varieties of peaches and 15 varieties of apples, so everyone can find their favorites. They also carry local honey, eggs, beef jerky, local produce, and apple cider pressed from their own apples.

Fall activities are available each day that the farm is open and include a 4-acre corn maze, tire tower, hay maze, corn hole, a children’s play area, and hayrides to their pumpkin patch where you can pick your own pumpkin. All activities on the farm are free, though you purchase your pumpkin.

Similarly, Gallrein Farm features wagon rides to a huge pumpkin patch. There’s a petting zoo, and you can find fall produce, including colorful gourds, Indian corn, and mums for fall decorating. Come visit the new bakery with homemade fudge, donuts, caramel and fudge apples, and lots of other goodies. There also is a 4-acre corn maze. Can you find your way out?

 

Fundraiser event

Halloween also is a time when groups gather for fundraising purposes.

The Howl-O-Ween Dance Pawty and “Fun”draiser for 5Rescues.org is at 7 p.m. Oct. 27 at Claudia Sanders for those 21 and older. It supports It supports Shelby County Humane Society, Woodstock Animal Foundation, Shelby County No Kill Mission, Operation Catsnip of Kentucky and Tyson’s Chance Animal Foundation.

Costumes are optional. Proceeds go to help animals. “A costume party for a great cause!!!” said  Ashley Shelburne of Shelburne Pet Center.

 

Candy gathering

Of course Halloween comes with the annual tradition of candy-gathering. Several stores and businesses open their doors and welcome trick-or-treaters at varying times in the days leading up to Oct. 31. The rundown:

  • Neighborhood Trick-or-Treating will take place on from 5 p.m. until 7 p.m. Oct 31 in Shelbyville, Simpsonville and Shelby County.
  • Downtown Shelbyville merchants will host trick-or-treating in Main Street stores at 4-6 p.n. Oct. 27. No costumes required for treats from Tracy's, the Polka-Dotted Pineapple, Computer Hawks, the Ruby Rooster and other locales.
  • Shelbyville Village Plaza Merchants will host afternoon trick-or-treating in plaza shops at 3-5 p.m. Oct. 31.
  • Also, many churches are sponsoring “trunk or treat” events through next weekend and right up to Halloween.

Candy buy-back

New to the Halloween tradition is a Candy Buy-Back event hosted by Dr. Lisa Daugherty Family Dentistry. Who better than a dentist to offer to help you unload your extra sweets? This will be 3-6 p.m. Nov. 1 at the office on Alpine Drive in Shelbyville.

Gathered candy will be donated to Operation Gratitude, an agency that gives care packages of candy to deployed troops so they, too, can enjoy the fun of Halloween. Dr. Daugherty will pay $1 per pound for donated candy.

She also has lined up give-a-ways from area businesses such as gift cards and personal care gift baskets, and there will be other activities for kids  and a letter-writing table to write thank you notes to the troops. “It’s a new event for Shelbyville,” Daugherty said, “and we’ve had great response from community businesses, CUB Bank, the UPS store, Nationwide Imprinting have made donations toward the event and toward shipping the candy to the troops. We hope this becomes an annual event.”