Lynn A. and Patrick A. Sullivan decided to scare some sense into what they saw as a lack of haunted Halloween happenings for youngsters in the Adams area.
"There's really nothing around here for the kids to do," Mrs. Sullivan said of Halloween attractions in the Adams area. "We just wanted to do something for the kids."
So at the Sullivan home, at Route 178 and County Road 75 about five miles from the village, "Sullivan's Haunted Forest" has taken root. Just look for the crime scene tape in front of their house but ignore the no-trespassing signs, fenced-in waterfowl and nearby wood piles and mauls. That's all reserved for real life, folks.
Two years ago, the Sullivans hosted a haunted house in a converted greenhouse on their property, but this year opted for the forest. They plan to expand it next year.
Mrs. Sullivan, who performs as "the Grim Reaper" at the forest, said her husband and their two teenage children are aided by about a half-dozen others to stage the attraction.
"They're friends of ours," she said. "They have nothing to do."
On opening days during the first weekend in October, 16 people showed up, and the crowds are growing.
Mrs. Sullivan said many visitors find out about the attraction by word of mouth. She said some have come to the forest from as far away as Lowville.
It's cheap thrills at the Sullivan Haunted Forest. Admission is $1 for students, $1.50 for adults and free for children 5 and under.
The first attraction in the forest trail is the butcher table, where someone greets people behind a table of such items as "fake finger and brain parts." Apparently, there is a market for such gruesome whatnots.
"We found them at Walmart," Mrs. Sullivan said. "In the Halloween section."
Sullivan's Haunted Forest, which took nearly three weeks to create and is lighted at night, also features a "skeleton corner," "zombie people," a vampire who comes out of a casket and Mr. Sullivan, who as the movie character "Jason," chases people with a chainsaw.
"He has a mask where blood comes out of the face," Mrs. Sullivan said. "It's pretty graphic."
At the end of the trail, Mrs. Sullivan said, visitors are given parting scares, courtesy of a werewolf.
Sullivan's Haunted Forest is open until Halloween from 7:30 to 10 p.m. Wednesdays and Thursdays; 7:30 to midnight Fridays and Saturdays and 7 to 10 p.m. Sundays.
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If fright fans travel a little farther south to Oswego County, they can be guests at Blood Creek Manor.
Mark A. Phillips created the attraction in 2003 and has hosted it yearly since.
It features the Jigsaw Puzzle (a haunted house), the Forest of Fear and the Museum of Modern Horror.
To get to Blood Creek Manor, take Interstate 81 south to the Sandy Creek exit and make a right at the end of the exit ramp. At the T-intersection, make a right on Route 11. Immediately, make a left on Ellisburg Street, which is also County Route 22A. After passing the Oswego County Fairgrounds, make a left on Hadley Road. Drive 2.3 miles on Hadley Road and make a right on Skinner Road. Blood Creek Manor is 0.3 of a mile down Skinner Road on the left side.
Blood Creek Manor is open from 8 p.m. to midnight Fridays and Saturdays and 8 to 11 p.m. Sundays through Oct. 30. Cost, for all ages, is $4 for the haunted house, $10 for the Forest of Fear or $12 for both.
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WPBS-TV and the Jefferson County Historical Society have teamed up to host a "Folklore & Frost: Legends of Early Downtown" walking tour Oct. 22 and 23. Organizers call it a "frightfully fun evening" as some of the city's early, "eerie history" is explored at four stops.
The approximately one-hour tours begin at the society's Paddock Mansion, 228 Washington St., with the documentary "Folklore & Frost: Legends of Early Downtown."
The price is $10 per person. Tours depart at 6:30, 7:15 and 8 p.m. Oct. 22 and 23.
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The Watertown Downtown Business Association will partner with American Kang Duk Won Karate for the annual "haunted house" tour at Paddock Arcade for two weekends: Oct. 22 and 23 and Oct. 29 and 30. Hours are 7 to 10 p.m. Fridays and 1 to 4 p.m. Saturdays. Cost is $5.
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The Choral and Orchestral Development Association at Gouverneur High School will host its third annual Trail of Terror today on County Route 9 just outside the village.
It runs from 5:30 to 11:30 p.m. Admission is $7 for adults and $5 for students and senior citizens. Family discounts are available. This year, the trail also will feature a bazaar, with games and food.
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For more than 20 years, the Sackets Harbor Central School Sentinels have hosted a haunted house to support the Sentinels marching band. This year, the haunted house is in a different location. The traditional site at Madison Barracks isn't available because it was sold, with plans to renovate it.
The new Sentinels' haunted house is at the bus garage next to the school on Broad Street. It runs from 6 to 9 p.m. Wednesday, 6 to 10 p.m. Thursday and 6 to 11 p.m. Friday and Oct. 23. The first two hours on opening night are reserved for younger children, when the lights will be on and admission will be half price.
Regular admission is $4 for adults and $2 for children 12 and under.
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The annual Boo at the Zoo is 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Oct. 23 and 24 at the New York State Zoo at Thompson Park. The event is held in participation with the North Country Children's Clinic.
The event is targeted to children 12 and under and includes a trail where children can pick up treats and encounter characters from their favorite nursery rhymes and television shows.
The price is $3 plus regular zoo admission fees for non-zoo members and non-military members. Zoo members receive free zoo admission but there is a $2 event fee. For military non-zoo members, the event fee is $2, with discounted admission.
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Scarecrow Fantasyland returns to Route 310 in Norfolk this year after a hiatus last year. Besides scarecrows, including a giant 511/2-foot tall one, there are hayrides, a haunted house, wagon, paddle boat and dune buggy rides and other attractions.
Fantasyland creator Andrew L. Maslin Sr. said Fantasyland has become so popular that he will make it a year-round business beginning next June. "It's turning into that," he said.
Mr. Maslin started making his scarecrows in the early 1990s out of old clothes and hand-painted faces to sell because, at the time, he believed everyone wanted a scarecrow for their gardens. Eventually, he had so many of them, he started setting them up in funny scenes on his property.
The over 51-foot-tall scarecrow, which he said is not scary and dubbed a "buddycrow," is stuffed with hay and supported by trees.
Scarecrow Fantasyland is open daily from noon to dark, but "way late" (about 1 a.m.) on Fridays and Saturdays, Mr. Maslin said. The cost is $5, with rides and games extra.
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Here are other Halloween-related events in the area:
n Steve Harvester, "Teller of Tales" visits Traditional Arts of Upstate New York, 53 Main St.,Canton,at 3 p.m. Oct. 23. The free event is sponsored by Silver & Collins Law Firm, Canton. Mr. Harvester will tell Halloween stories for children 5 and older.
n The Black River Rollers, Watertown's roller derby team, will host a "Halloween bash" from 6 to 11 p.m. Oct. 23 at the Italian-American Civic Association, 192 Bellew Ave.,Watertown.From 6 to 8 p.m., events are kid-friendly, including a costume contest, songs, games and a pumpkin patch. From 8 to 11 p.m., events are geared toward adults. Those events include dancing, a fortune teller and the chance to leg wrestle a derby girl.
n The Thousand Islands Young Leaders Organization will hold its inaugural "Fright at the Museum" Halloween event at 4 p.m. Oct. 23 at the Antique Boat Museum, 750 Mary St.,Clayton.
The $2 admission includes four "creepy crafts," one make-your-own candy apple and a "spooky grab bag." Children under age 5 are admitted free of charge but must have an adult with them.
The first 30 children will receive a free pumpkin to carve and every child with a costume will be entered into a drawing for a giant pumpkin.
To sign up or for more information, call Jake Tibbles at 681-8158.
n Judging for a pumpkin-carving and costume contest sponsored by the GreaterOgdensburgChamber of Commerce is at 6 p.m. Oct. 25 at Dobisky Visitors Center, 100 Riverside Ave.
n "Fright Night" is 5:30 to 8 p.m. Oct. 28 inPotsdam. Downtown businesses will have special activities for children and specials for shoppers. A block on Market Street will be blocked off to vehicle traffic, with games set up in the street.
n HarrisvilleCentral School District junior prom party representatives will host their first Halloween haunted trail from 5 to 9 p.m. Oct. 28 and 5 to 10 p.m. Oct. 29. Cost is $5 for folks over age 10 and $3 for those 10 and under. The trail, which will feature about 40 scenes, is behind the school at 14371 Pirate Lane.
n Salmon Run Mallwill host its annual trick-or-treating event beginning at 4 p.m. Oct. 29.
n Lewis County Memorial Veterans of Foreign Wars Post, 7784 W. State St.,Lowville, will sponsor a Halloween party from 1 to 3 p.m. Oct. 30 at the post. It's open to children and grandchildren of VFW members and ladies auxiliary members.
n OxbowVolunteer Fire Co. will host a Halloween party for children from 1 to 4 p.m. Oct. 30 at the fire hall on Main Street. A costume parade is at 2 p.m. Parental supervision is requested.
n InSouth Colton, a Halloween dance sponsored by Racquette Valley Fish and Game Club is from 8 p.m. to midnight Oct. 30 at the club on Coldbrook Drive. Music is by Generation Gap. There will be prizes for costumes. Admission: $3.
n Waddington'sHepburn Library on Main Street will host a Halloween party at 3 p.m. Oct. 30, at the library. Guests are invited to bring a pumpkin to carve, paint or decorate and enter a pumpkin contest. There will be games and refreshments.
n A harvest festival sponsored byRelevant Church of Godis from 6 to 9 p.m. Oct. 30, at the church at 207 W. Lynde St. Organizers call it a safe alternative to door-to-door trick-or-treating. There will be cider, food, prizes, games and drawings, including ones for an iPod Touch and a $25 Walmart gift card.
n TheEdwardsOpera House will present its eight annual Halloween show for families at 6:30 p.m. Oct. 30 at the opera house, 161 main St. Featured will be magician Richard Tenace. Guests are invited to wear costumes. Cost is $4 for adults and free for children age 12 and under.
n The Crane Horn Choir will celebrate Halloween with a concert of haunting music at 3 p.m. Oct. 31 in Helen M. Hosmer Concert Hall atSUNY Potsdam's Crane School of Music.
Led by Kelly Drifmeyer, the student group will perform spooky works and conclude the concert by handing out candy.
The public is invited to attend in costume along with their candy buckets to hear such Halloween musical hits as "Mars" from "The Planets," "March to the Scaffold" from "Symphonie Fantastique" and "Hall of the Mountain King" from "Peer Gynt."
Ms. Drifmeyer is an associate professor of horn at the Crane School of Music. She has performed with the Windsor Symphony in Ontario, the Kansas City Symphony and the New Ear, a contemporary music ensemble, as well as the North Carolina Symphony and the New Mexico Symphony.
n In Massena, Terror Mansion, 535 S. Main St., is open 7 to 10 p.m. Friday, Saturday and Sunday. Patrons can choose their level of fright. Cost: $7 for one person, $13 for two and $30 for a family of five.