Homosassa Springs Wildlife State Park isn’t all manatees, birds, and giant hippos named Lu. During halloween, they offer a wide variety of holiday-themed family activities. On the 26th we made the 1.5 hour trek down and it was worth it all the way.
First off, we arrived just in time for the costume contest! James (though only wearing a pumpkin bib and headband) took second place in the 0-3 age category…out of two contestants. 🙂 Caris, as a baseball player, received first place in the 9-12 category, while Luke, rocking a last-minute costume as Iceman, nabbed second. I’m pretty sure that one of the deciding factors was that when they walked up to “show the judges their stuff” they burst into a dual “worming” act. 🙂 And yours truly took second in the 13-15 category (out of two again). Hey, I was up against Pippi Longstocking! Who can say no to that childhood favorite?
Next we breezed through the haunted house located on-site. They toned it down for us, with three kids 7 and under, so the littles thought it was very cool. Come to think of it, I did too! The decorations were bountiful and detailed, complete with live actors (they just stood there, nothing scary).
The haunted house may have been cake, but the haunted tram ride (a scary version of the regular tram cruise) was anything but. When they said haunted, I figured that they meant there would be decorations, lights, and maybe a few scary-music tracks playing. Not quite! They meant people jumping out from every-which-way and screaming rather overenthusiasticly, in my opinion. There was even a few chainsaw-wielding people thrown in to the mix. I normally would have been fine with it excepting the fact that we have a bunch of little kids. (There were some terrified tears on the 20-minute ride). This is a fun attraction if you have older kids, or kids who like spooky stuff, like my 12-year-old brother. However, I strongly advise against letting younger kids participate in this.
Overall, the atmosphere was very enjoyable at the Homosassa Halloween celebration. There was music playing and a bouncy slide going, with refreshments available for purchase, a great place to bring your kids to have some fun. But be sure to visit during the rest of the year, too–the park has so much to offer!