Boo! Muddy’s Halloween and half term guide
Whether you can't wait to get pumpkin-carving while wearing fangs and green face paint, or your kids are *thankfully* past all that, there's something for everyone in Muddy's guide.
ARTS & CULTURE
Shlomo’s Beatbox Adventure, Exeter Phoenix, Gandy St, Mon 25 Oct, 2pm
He’s worked with Ed Sheeran, Lily Allen, and Rudimental, and now record-breaking beatboxer Shlomo is in Exeter, making mad music with his mouth. Suitable for all ages.
Nerd Immunity: No Such Thing as a Fish, Queen’s Theatre, Barnstaple, Mon 18 Oct
One for teens (apparently there’s the odd blue word but nothing too naughty), the brain-expanding podcast takes to the stage with its UK tour, featuring a live recording of a podcast episode, plus a first half stuffed to the gills with geeky facts, comedy, and need-to-know nerdery. Also at Exeter Corn Exchange on Sun 17 Oct.
Stick Man, Exeter Northcott, Sat 30 Oct 2021 – Sun 31 Oct 2021
Will poor Stick Man ever make it back to the family tree? Find out at Freckle Productions’ Time Out-approved adaptation of Julia Donaldson and Axel Scheffler’s gorgeous picture book full of puppetry, songs, live music and funky moves. Three performances a day, morning and two matinee, perfect for littlies.
Night of Light and Sound, Royal Albert Memorial Museum and Art Gallery (RAMM), Fri 29 Oct, 6-7.30pm
Part of RAMM’s weekend-long Museum at Large events around the city, here’s a cultural chance to explore Exeter museum’s iconic collections by torchlight, and to get crafty with some lantern-making culminating in a light parade through the darkened corridors. £3pp.
Weaving Journeys, The Box, Plymouth, Tues 26 – Fri 29 Oct, 10.30am-12.30pm (last entry 12.10pm) and 1.30pm-3.30pm (last entry 3.10pm)
Your child love to cut out and craft? Here’s a chance for them to help make a giant woven artwork, as part of the museum’s Songlines: Tracking the Seven Sisters exhibition, celebrating the world’s oldest cultures. Plus, on Sat 30 Oct, The Box Kitchen & Bar are hosting Monster Mash with Halloween-themed dishes, a spooktacular disco and the chance to take a torchlight tour through some of their ghoooul-eries.
Spooky Cinema, Ullacombe Farm, Bovey Tracey, Sat 30 Oct
A charmingly unspooky location in which to see the 1993 American fantasy comedy film Hocus Pocus! Ideal if you have any little ones who can’t take the full-scary at Halloween.
Exmoor Dark Skies Festival 2021, various in Devon and Somerset
What kids doesn’t love the thrill of being outdoors after dark and this way you can fill their head with useful astronomical facts too. Stargazers with a poetic bent will be interested in this year’s competition – write a haiku and the best one wins a Celestron telescope.
RHS Rosemoor Autumn Carnival, Great Torrington, Sat 23 – Sun 31 Oct
A week-long excuse to wrap up and go kicking through RHS Rosemoor’s impeccably groomed leaves, with pumpkin painting, a sowing and growing drop-in, craft and a late-afternoon fancy-dress opportunity at their Halloween Disco in the Garden Room on Saturday.
Spooky Season, Paignton Zoo, Paignton nr Torquay, Sat 23 – 31 Oct
The animal antics take a ghoulish gloss at the Muddy Award-winning zoo, with daily talks, quizzes and craft sessions, including ‘Potion Pledge’ at the Zebra Paddock where they get to make a magical potion with some curious objects, presumably not ‘eye of newt’…Fancy dress welcome.
Hidden History Tour, Tapeley Park Gardens, Bideford, Sun 24 Oct
Fancy a Halloween trip without the pumpkin? Why not try this aristocratic garden tour with Susan Pengelly of ‘Haunted History Tours of Devon’ where you can tingle your spine with true stories of ghosts and have a little nosey at the lovely gardens whilst you’re there. Apparently, it takes a lot more than bad weather to stop one of these tours (and you can take the dog) come rain or shine.
Nightmare Disco, Adrenlin, Brest Rd, Plymouth, Sat 30 Oct, 6-8pm
Don’t fancy hosting the kids’ Halloween party this year? Let trampoline centre, Adrenalin, take the strain with laid-on letting off steam, spooky toons, scary sweets, a free raffle – and no clearing up afterwards. Mini Adrenalin for 5s and under is on Sunday 31.
Halloween Twilight Run, Haldon Forest, near Exeter, Fri 29 Oct
Dare you go to into the woods at night?! Take your pick from three races – 2.5k, 5k and a 10k, for ages 5+ and every ‘survivor’ gets a medal.
V&A: Curiouser & Curiouser, The Flavel, Dartmouth, Sat 30 Oct, 2pm
Didn’t make it the Big Smoke to see the exhibition? Here’s a cinematic guided tour down the rabbit hole with V&A Curator Kate Bailey and presenter Andi Oliver, bringing it to life and exploring how Alice has become an enduring icon.
Underground Pumpkin Hunt, Kents Cavern, Torquay, Sat 23 – Sun 31 Oct
Go caving (not as dangerous as it sounds) for a pumpkin trail with a difference, plus the usual stalactites and stalagmites (remember the difference?), plus prizes to be won.
Halloween Hijinks at Watermouth Castle, nr Ilfracombe, Sat 23 – Sun 31 Oct
No rollercoaster, but there’s always loads to see at this quaint and quirky Victorian castle, including a spooky dungeon, vintage memorabilia, a maze, a village of gnomes, plus small rides for the ankle-biters and a luge for older kids, and all in a stunning location overlooking the sea.
Spook-Fest, Crealy Theme Park, Exeter, Sat 23 Oct – Sun 31 Oct
Spook-Fest is back with its ‘Scarecrow Scare Maze’, a live Book of Spells Show, aerial acrobatics, dance with a banging soundtrack, and a free pumpkin as part of the ticket price to save on the pennies. Booking essential.
Halloween Fun, The Big Sheep, Abbotsham, nr Bideford, Sat 23 – Sun 31 Oct
Got tots and teens to entertain this half term? Lucky you… Send the eye-rollers off to the 400m long and 13m high Rampage Rollercoaster and Twister, while the young ‘uns can dress up, carve pumpkins, throw spooky shapes at the Monsters Glow Party, and take a ride on the spooky train and tractor rides. Plus, a pre-schoolers week from 18 Oct with a Witch’s Flying School – book us in!
Woodland Witchcraft Trail at Buckland Abbey, Yelverton, from Mon 11 Oct
Raid the dressing up box and head into Buckland Abbey’s ancient woodland for a folklore-themed tree and pumpkin trail.
Harry and Dumbledore Magic Show, Exeter Guildhall, Sun 31 Oct
Halloween sees Exeter’s Guildhall taken over by wizarding, with a magical show featuring Harry and Dumbledore and lots of illusion and silliness, as seen at Alnwick Castle, the home of Hogwarts. If you want to be ‘sorted’ into your house (yes please, Gryffindor obvs) you’ll need a ticket, and there is a rather delightful proviso from the organiser: Please note, these characters are look-a-like performers. Unfortunately all the real people are away on Ministry matters.
PYO Pumpkin Trails, various around the county
What do you mean you didn’t get round to sowing a pumpkin patch last Spring?! Never mind, we’ve gourd your kids’ Halloween lanterns sorted with Muddy’s guide to the best PYO pumpkin farms around Devon.