Happily Haunted Gardens returns

Experience Bookworm Gardens at night as thousands of twinkling lights illuminate the gardens for two weekends of not-so-scary fun.

Returning favorite exhibits include the giant blue bookworm, the walkway under the rainbow-colored inchworm, and the Amphitheater Dance Party.

And several new features will be unveiled this year, including bees and a honeypot by Winnie the Pooh; flowers and a hummingbird; and a large spider with her net!

Thirsty Thursday, an adults-only event, will be held Thursday, Oct. 22 from 6-9 p.m.. Visitors can jam to live music by SugarNova, peacefully wander the twinkling gardens, have the opportunity for their fortunes to be read, drink craft beer and wine, and enjoy a bowl of chili and other food. The cost is $7 per person, members free. Cash bar, food for purchase.

Family nights will be held on Friday and Saturday, Oct. 23 and 24, and Thursday and Friday, Oct. 29 and 30. Hours for family night are from 5-8 p.m.

Visitors are invited to dress in costume. Activities include trick-ortreating at stations throughout the gardens, listening to book characters read stories aloud, dancing in the starry musical amphitheater, and having fortunes read.

Chili, hot dogs, grilled cheese sandwiches and other food are available for purchase. Cost is $5 per person, members free.

Bookworm Gardens is an independent not-for-profit botanical garden based on children’s literature. Since there is no admission fee for individuals and families, the Gardens relies on donations and fundraisers such as Happily Haunted to cover operating costs.

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