TACO Parks Plan Numerous Halloween Activities
Activities for adults and children alike are taking place in campgrounds, RV parks and resorts across Texas this fall, with several parks featuring Halloween-themed campsite decorating and costume competitions.
“Park operators know that if they provide enough activities and entertainment, people will keep coming back for more,” Brian Schaeffer, executive director and CEO of the Texas Association of Campground Owners (TACO), stated in a news release.
Here’s a sampling of some of the special events Texas parks are promoting this fall:
- Burleson/South Fort Worth Jellystone Park Camp-Resort: This park features Fall Fiesta activities every weekend in October that include pumpkin patch activities, costume contests, haunted “hey, hey, hey” rides and haunted walking trails as well as “Scaryoke Karaoke” activities. Other onsite activities include arts and crafts, movies and story times with Yogi.
- Hill Country Jellystone in Canyon Lake: This park’s fall activities include a fall festival weekends on Oct. 28-30, which include a non-scary costume contest and a magic pumpkin patch. Onsite activities also include arts and crafts, movies, laser tag, gem mining and story times with Yogi. The park also has an annual Thanksgiving potluck dinner. Each family brings two side dishes to share and Yogi brings the turkeys.
- Lone Star Yogi in Waller: This park’s fall activities include “Trail of Terror” weekends every weekend in October with Halloween music and dancing, movies, crafts, a magic pumpkin patch, a not-so-scary hey rides, ceramic painting, tye-dye T-shirt making, campsite and cabin decorating contests and trick or treating.
- Rayford Crossing in The Woodlands: This park has several activities planned for this fall, including its annual chili cook-off on the last weekend of October. “We anticipate having approximately 30 to 35 cookers in this years event,” said park owner Gwen Craig. “Cash Prizes are awarded for the first and second place winners. We also do a street party complete with a band and have an adult costume contest. We also have a best-decorated site contest. For kids, we host a Halloween party during the day with lots of crafts and games. During the evening hours, we do a door-to-door trick-or-treat with the kids.” Rayford Crossing also planning activities for Thanksgiving weekend. “We host a traditional Thanksgiving Dinner on Thanksgiving Day and then on Friday, we kick off the Christmas season with Santa visiting our Christmas Party on the Saturday after Thanksgiving,” Craig said. “We have crafts and games and food and hayrides. It is a four-day weekend packed with fun.”
- Traders Village Grand Prairie RV Park: This park, which adjoins the Traders Village open air marketplace in Grand Prairie, provides a convenient location for those wishing to participate in a variety of upcoming events at the marketplace, including a “haunted hallway” Oct. 29 and the Annual Mountain Man Weekend Gathering Nov. 12-13, which provides a window into the past through songs, storytelling and historical reenactments. Mountain Man demonstrations will include beading, tomahawk and knife throwing, firestarting, blacksmithing, and soap making.
- Traders Village Houston RV Park: This park, which adjoins the Traders Village open air marketplace in Houston, is ideally located for families wishing to participate in the upcoming events at the marketplace, including its 11th annual Halloween Boo Bash for Kids on Oct. 30 in which children 12 and under can trick-or-treat for thousands of pieces of candy at participating shops throughout the market, while supplies last. The activities also include a Haunted Hallway, which consists of seven creepy-rooms of scares and goodies for children. Every child attending will receive a Halloween gift and trick-or-treat bag while supplies last. The first 250 kids to arrive in costume will receive a special gift from Traders Village. Other fall events include a Native American Championship Pow Wow Nov. 12-13, with colorful tribal dance contests, an arts and craft show, tipis and singing by dozens of tribes from across the United States. Dancers will compete for $15,000 in prize money. Native American foods, including fry bread and Indian tacos, will also be served. The 8th Annual Houston Championship Chili Cook off will also take place at this Traders Village location on Nov. 19.
- Whispering Pines RV & Cabin Resort in Tyler: This park has several special events planned for this fall, including an “Almost Halloween” weekend celebration Oct. 22-23, which will include contests for best decorated campsite, best carved pumpkin and best costume as well as opportunities to make candied apples and caramel apples. Halloween weekend, Oct. 29-30, will feature similar activities as well as a “Halloween Monster Mash Dance.” Special activities are also being planned for Thanksgiving weekend.
Many Texas parks, in fact, are hosting Thanksgiving dinners for their guests, including the KOA parks in San Antonio, Mathis and San Angelo, as well as Top of the Hill RV Resort in Boerne, which will be hosting its annual “Turkey in a Trash Can” Thanksgiving.