Eat, drink, and be scary.
The area offers up a frighteningly delightful array of Halloween events.
Haunted Houses are in the works for Schaller, Marathon, Spirit Lake and Aurelia - along with a new Spooky Pointe event at King's Pointe Resort in Storm Lake.
Families may also want to check out a Halloween Hike, and trick-or-treating at the BVU campus or at downtown Storm Lake retailers.
Here's a rundown on all the fun. Read on, if you dare:
*Spooky Pointe - Storm Lake's King's Pointe will host it's Spooky Pointe from Oct. 26-31. Cost is $8 (for those staying in the resort, special rooms prices are $89/ $109 for suites with Spooky Pointe passes included.)
There will be crafts on the birthday deck and a haunted trail. For more information about Spooky Point, call 1-866-552-5960.
* The Schaller Jaycees will be hosting their annual haunted house in Schaller. It will begin Oct. 12 -13, starting at 7 p.m. and running until the crowd "dies" down, and continues Oct. 19- 20 and Oct. 26- 31 starting at 7 p.m. each night. A Sunday afternoon lights on matinee will be held Oct. 28 from 2- 5 p.m. The cost is $5 per person.
The haunted house is located across from the elevator at an abandoned popcorn plant. You can count on this haunted house being scary. They have been awarded a top rating for haunted houses in the state. The Schaller Jaycees have a chainsaw trophy to prove it.
They use real chain saws, and tout a creepy clown room, electric chair room, chain saw room and maze. Derek Wall does give a little hint that there will be new things this year: "You'll just have to come to see what they are." Wall has helped create the haunted masterpiece for quite a few years. He says, " It's a way to help out the town, the money goes back into the town. It's just a good way to help out.'
Wall estimates that the haunted house has run for 20 years.
* Aurelia will host the Haunted Bates Motel for a short time. On Oct. 20 the motel will be open from 8-10 p.m., Oct. 27 from 7- 10 p.m., Oct. 28 from 5-7 p.m. and Oct. 31 from 7-9 p.m. It is located above the Village Boutique on 137 Main Street. The cost is $4 per person and in its ninth year, they know how to scare you!
* The Marathon Community Center will host a scary tour of the tunnels of the old school. It will run Oct. 12 from 7 p.m.-12 a.m., Oct. 5-6:30 p.m. with the lights on and 6:30-10 p.m. without the lights.
Events continue Oct. 19- 20 from 7 p.m.-12 a.m., Oct. 24 from 7-10 p.m., Oct. 26- 27 from 7 p.m.-12 p.m. and Oct. 29-31 from 7- 10 p.m. The cost is $5 per person and $2 for those ages 10 and under during the lights on.
* Dickinson County Fairgrounds will be the host of a haunted house on Oct. 19- 20, 26- 27 and 31 at 7 p.m.
* Hagge Park, just south of Sac City will hold it's annual Halloween Hike on Oct. 20-21 from 6-9 p.m. Pumpkin carving will be Oct. 19 at 6:30 p.m. Reservations are necessary for this event by calling 712-662-4530
*Don't forget the trick-or-treating through the dorms at BVU on Sunday, Oct. 28 from 5:30-7:30 p.m. The last group will be led through the dorms at 7 p.m. Call 749-2123 for information.
* The Storm Lake Retailers' offer Trick-or-Treat downtown, Saturday, October 27, at 2 p.m. until the treats are gone.
You don't have to be 'Psycho' to get a thrill at the Bates Motel
The residents of Aurelia love to celebrate the fact that they once had the real Dr. Bates living in their community; in fact, they have transformed his office into a haunted house for all the spook-lovers to enjoy. It has been cleverly called "The Haunted Bates Motel."
This elaborate haunted hotel will officially be open four nights this month - if you dare to check-in.
Upon arrival, guests will be greeted by a ghastly guide who will take them from room to room (in this motel, all of the haunting rooms are lucky number 13, of course.)
Each room has a separate scene guaranteed to send a shiver down the spine of the most jaded haunted house fan.
This year you will encounter the Children of the Corn, a mysterious fortune teller and a haunted cemetery. There will also be an electric chair in one room - and an "execution" going on.
The upside-down room will keep you questioning just how a piano (and its player) stay attached to the ceiling.
The tunnel of terror, the haunted hallway and the spooky maize will be back by popular demand. Throughout the haunted motel, there is a clever use of motion-activated lights and creepy creatures will pop out when you least expect it.
For those who don't think they can handle the entire haunting experience, there is a "chicken" door to escape out of; don't be afraid to use it.
The Haunted Bate's Motel has been in Aurelia since 1999, created by residents of Aurelia and friends who love the spooky holiday.
The first two days of its debut year, over 1,000 people passed through the door. It was then that the group of volunteers decided they had something special. It was so much fun for the creators, that they have continued coming up with new ideas so that the returning thrill-seekers will continue to be amazed. This year, in fact, there are several rooms that will undergo changes from night to night as there are many people who visit the motel more than once during the season of fright.
Dave Johnson, who has volunteered each year, was asked why he keeps coming back.
"Why not?" he said, "It's fun, and no one ever knows who anyone is in there." And that leads to more fun!
Sue Lindgren has also volunteered for nearly every year said she enjoys the role playing and "being someone else. It's good clean fun."
Pam Allen, who with her husband Denny, owns the Village Boutique which houses the Haunted Bates Motel, enjoys this time of year.
Though everyone plays an important part in making the operation of the haunted house successful, she feels the guides are the most important people there.
"They set the stage and if they set it just right, you'll be freaked out all the way through!"
The guides alert the operators of the rooms through conversation with the "guests" that there may be children in the group, a message to calm things down. Or that there is an acquaintenance or a group that appears to be fun-loving; a message to stir the fright up even greater.
The volunteers spend hours and hours preparing their rooms; there is great talent to share including contractors, electricians and engineers. It is this combination that provides the amazement. Everyone donates their own time and money for materials to prepare their room. Ideas are always shared among each other.
"We've got great camaraderie," said Allen. "We're like a family - the Bates family."
The Haunted Bates Motel will be open:
* Saturday, Oct. 20 - 8-10 p.m.
* Saturday, Oct. 27 - 7-10 p.m.
* Sunday, Oct. 28 - 5-7 p.m.
* Wednesday, Oct. 31 - 7-9 p.m.
Cost is $4 per person.
Aurelia, the area's Halloween headquarters, plans 9th Harvest Hoopla
Aurelia's enthusiasm for the spookiest of holidays goes beyond the haunted house that residents create each year. The Harvest Hoopla has scared up fun for kids and adults for nine years, and this year's show, planned for Saturday, Oct. 27, is no different.
From a Halloween Costume Parade to tasty treats to a Little Spooks House for younger kids, the party will be in full swing.
Get your cookbooks out and find your best apple and/or pumpkin recipes for a Halloween recipe contest. Prizes of $10 will be awarded for the most unusual, best appetizer, best main dish and best dessert. There will be two age categories competing - ages 12 and under and ages 13 and over. Bring your prepared entries and a copy of the recipe to the Village Boutique by 4 p.m. . Winners will be announced by 5:30 p.m.
Coming back this year, is a scarecrow contest. There is a $15 entry fee with cash prizes awarded to first, second and third places. Proceeds will go to the Aurelia Youth League program. Registration is at 9 a.m. , located at the lot by Maple Valley Hardware (Main Street). Call (712) 434-2096 for more details.
The Friends of Aurelia women's group sponsors the Little Spook House, suggested for kids fifth grade and below. For $3, participants take part in a number of activities. This year's event will be held in the Aurelia Community School (please use south parking lot and door.) Costumes are optional.Hours are 2-4 p.m.
A kiddy costume parade is set for 5:30 p.m., led by Cinderella and her friends. Line up is at the city park. All kids will receive a goody bag!
Following the parade, take part in the scavenger hunt, sponsored by the Aurelia Little League. Teams of two to three youth and one adult meet at the Aurelia Cafe. Registration forms are available at Aurelia businesses. There will be a $5 team cost. Prizes will be awarded for first, second and third place.
If you are hungry, check out the food fair downtown beginning at 5:30 p.m.
After a tour of the Bates Haunted Motel, grown-up partiers can enjoy an adult dance will be held at the Aurelia Golf Club, 601 Valor Road, from 9 p.m.-1 a.m. Music will be provided by the band "Once Bitten." Come dressed in costume, if you wish. Prizes will be awarded for the best costumes.
Get into the holiday spirit and join your friends for a frightfully fun time in Aurelia, the area's Halloween City. Once you've checked in to the Haunted Bates Motel, you'll want to make it an annual event!