Jack-O-Lantern Nights Racine Zoo Wisconsin

25 Kid-Friendly Halloween Events in the Milwaukee Area (2022)

Halloween season is here! As the cooler air brings out the goosebumps, so do these special events for kids. They’re a great way to get young children into the Halloween spirit with not too many frights. We also found some that are just a tad spooky, perfect for older kids.

1. BAYSHORE BOOgie Bash & Costume Contest

Friday, October 28, 2022, 5-8 p.m.
Admission: FREE

The Yard at BAYSHORE will come alive with monsters, superheroes, witches and princesses on Friday, October 28, 5-8 p.m., with the 3rd Annual BAYSHORE BOOgie Bash & Costume Contest.

In partnership with Spirit Halloween, this free and fun event will host a costume contest with prizes at 6 p.m., a hay maze, Fairytale Princesses, two giant Z-Bot LED Robots, laser light shows, ever-so-spooky Halloween displays throughout The Yard, food trucks and more.

2. Boo at the Zoo (Milwaukee County Zoo)

October 20-23, 2022, 5:30-9 p.m.
Admission: Adults $13.50; Juniors (ages 3-12) $11.50; Children (2 and under) FREE. Parking included in ticket price. Zoo Pass members receive a 15% discount with code TREAT and member ID.

tiger with pumpkin for Boo at the Zoo Milwaukee County Wisconsin

Prepare to be (not too) scared! Enjoy a haunting time trying to escape the haystack maze, take a ride (if you dare) on the “Raven’s Rail” train, and check out hundreds of carved, glowing pumpkins. Trick or treat near your favorite animals too!

A walking event this year, Boo at the Zoo will also feature like live pumpkin-carving demos, dazzling light shows, mad science stations, plus so much more! Several of the animal buildings will be open just for this family-friendly event!

Costumes are encouraged! Bring your own trick-or-treat bag. A variety of food and beverages will be available throughout the Zoo.

A limited number of tickets are available online until the night of the event or until sold out. Tickets are nonrefundable and honored only for the specific evening for which they were purchased.

Free parking included in ticket price. Zoo Pass members receive a 15% discount with code TREAT and member ID.

3. Scarecrow Lane (Friends of Retzer Nature Center)

Open daily through Oct. 31, 2022, Sunrise to 10 p.m.
Admission: FREE

Scarecrow Lane at Retzer Nature Center Waukesha Wales Wisconsin

Say hello to the unique scarecrows along the Blue Trail at Retzer Nature Center! Scarecrow Lane is a self-guided hike on the west end of the Learning Center building. The scarecrows, decorated by local families and businesses, will be on display through October 31.

On your half-mile hike, you’ll also see Retzer Pond and the Children’s Garden, filled with pumpkins, flowers, and other fall plants. Expect woodchipped and mowed grass trails with some sloped terrain. Some heavy-duty strollers may be able to handle the terrain, but it might be better to plan on walking.

While you’re there, you can also check out the newly renovated, accessible Discovery Trail, get a good view of Waukesha on the “Vista Trail”, and hike along boardwalks and babbling brooks on the the “Nature Trail.”

4. Pumpkin Fest (Basse’s Taste of Country)

Daily through Oct. 31, 2022
Admission: Weekdays $13.49; September Weekends $15.99; October Weekends $18.99 (taxes not included; some activities incur an extra cost)

Start your family traditions and come explore Happy Jack’s Pumpkin Land at Basse’s! This ever-improving Pumpkin Festival is just 25 minutes northwest of Milwaukee.

Pick your own perfect pumpkin from the patch, challenge yourself in the 8-acre corn maze, and enjoy 65+ fun activities for the whole family, including jumping pillows, train, ropes course, duck races, arcade games and so much more! They add new activities every year.

There’s also pig races, dog shows, lumberjack shows, cowboy stunts, a dance party, and a candy cannon. Purchase corn stalks, straw bales, pumpkins of all sizes, squash, gourds, and more from the market.

5. NEW! Sprecher Halloween Party

Sunday, Oct. 30, 2022, 3-6 p.m.
Admission: FREE
Register Here

Sprecher Brewing Company Halloween Party trick-or-treat Glendale Wisconsin

For the first time, Sprecher Brewing Co. will be hosting a trick-or-treat event at its retail gift shop and taproom. There will be face painting, food trucks, games and prizes, a costume parade, and a Bloody Bar for adult ghouls.

The event is FREE; however, attendees MUST pre-register for planning purposes. Register and receive a Sprecher Rooty plush once checked-in.

6. Halloween Haunts (Wehr Nature Center)

October 13-15, 2022
Admission: $10 per person ($4 parking for non-members); Children under 2 are FREE

Combine the make-believe, spooky fun of Halloween with the beauty of nighttime nature for an event that is fun for the whole family. Wehr Nature Center’s woodland is transformed into an Enchanted Forest, complete with a cackling witch, a talking owl, and even some rapping arthropods.

Be amazed by more than 300 jack-o-lanterns that light the path through the forest. The walk is just spooky enough to keep kids on their toes, but designed to create chuckles and smiles, not nightmares.

Snap some family photos at this year’s new selfie spot, enjoy a magic show after your walk, and be sure to donate to the virtual food drive.

Hikes start between 6 p.m. and 8:30 p.m. Advance tickets are required.

Save $5 per ticket when you attend Saturday’s matinee (2-3:30 p.m.), a special daytime version designed for families and groups who would like a fully accessible nature themed Halloween event.

7. Jack-O-Lantern Nights (Racine Zoo)

September 29-October 30, 2022
Admission: $10 (2 and under are FREE)

Jack-O-Lantern Nights Racine Zoo Wisconsin

At this Racine Zoo event, you can stroll through dazzling lights and more than 1,000 festive, hand-carved jack-o-lantern masterpieces created by talented professional artists.

Warm up with seasonal food and beverages, and get into the Halloween spirit! Proceeds benefit the animals and programs of the Racine Zoo.

8. Local Halloween Displays

Nightmare Before Christmas

For just the right amount of spook, head to these great places with awe-inspiring Halloween displays. Most are totally free to drive by or walk-through, and many are designed and created by local residents.

9. Oak Creek Fall Festival

Saturday, Oct. 22, 2022, 9 a.m.-6 p.m.
Admission: FREE

kids in costume at Oak Creek Fall Festival Wisconsin
Photo Credit: Facebook, @visitoakcreek

A harvest tradition in Drexel Town Square, this family-friendly outdoor event celebrates everything autumn. Festivities include a costume parade at 1 p.m., plus an all-day pumpkin decorating contest, petting zoo, pony rides, live music, Oak Creek Farmers Market, craft vendors, caricatures, face painting, hayrides through Emerald Preserve, a giant inflatable corn maze, and more.

10. Great Pumpkin Festival

Oct. 26-31, 2022, 6-9 p.m.
Admission: FREE

Great Pumpkin Festival Whitefish Bay Wisconsin
Photo Credit: Facebook, @whitefishbay.civicfoundation

A full festival will take place Wednesday through Saturday, featuring live music along with food vendors and a beer tent. Residents will be able to pick up pumpkins at various times throughout the week and then return them to the park to be part of the walk-through lighted display on Sunday and Monday night (6-9 p.m.). There will be no pumpkin carving done on site, and no festival activities will take place on Sunday and Monday.

11. Happily Haunted Gardens (Bookworm Gardens)

October 15-16, 20-23, 27-30, 2022, 5-8 p.m.
Admission: General $15; Sheboygan County Residents $10; Members & Children 2 and under FREE

The magical Gardens in Sheboygan will be decked out in thousands of twinkling lights. Listen to stories, hunt for friendly ghosts, and stroll through a pumpkin walk. Don’t forget to wear your costumes.

Leave your trick-or-treat bags home! Children will receive a pre-packaged Bookworm goodie bag as they leave.

Dinner fare, munchies, and festive beverages will be available for purchase.

Reservations required.

12. Not So Scary Halloween Party (The Hill Has Eyes)

Sundays in October 2022, 2:30-4:45 p.m.
Admission: $15

Not So Scary Halloween Party The Hills Have Eyes Franklin Wisconsin

Not-So-Scary Halloween Party is ideal for kids and families who want to experience The Hill Has Eyes attraction when it is not so scary. Their actors will take you on a guided tour through the attractions, and kids will get to trick-or-treat along the way. 

Kids are encouraged to dress up and be a part of the fun! All ages welcome, recommended for ages 8 and up.

Tip: Purchase a family bundle to enjoy both the Halloween party and a drive-in movie at The Milky Way Drive-In (see below)! For just $45, everyone in your vehicle will get admission to both attractions.

13. October Fright Nights (Milky Way Drive-In)

The Milky Way Drive-in is showing a PG-rated Halloween movies every weekend in October at 5 p.m. (think “Casper” and “Hotel Transylvania”).

Beforehand, you can walk through a Not-So-Scary Halloween Party every Sunday from 2:30-4:45 (more info above). A family bundle for both attractions is $45, and that gets admission for everyone in your vehicle.

14. Legends & Lore (Old World Wisconsin)

October 14-15, 21-22, 2022, 5:30-9:30 p.m.
Admission: Adults/Seniors $19.99; Children (5-12) $13.99; Under 5 FREE

Eerie tales lurk in the dark, as legends and lore come to life in the woods of Old World Wisconsin. Tonight the veil is thin between this world and the next. What is real, and what is a legend? Explore the Crossroads Village after dark. 

Venture into the dark of the woods. Scattered around the village are performances and storytelling, along with games and spooky Halloween fun. With map in hand, you’ll move around the site, encountering different storytellers and performances. Warm up with drinks and sweet treats, hear live music, or shop in the Museum Store before heading home through the darkness.

Advance tickets required.

15. The Hollow at Phantom Lake

Sept. 30-Oct. 23, 2022 (select dates)
Admission: $15 ($18 on Fridays and Saturdays)

Take a stroll and enter a world of enchantment filled with 3,000 hand-carved, illuminated jack-o’-lanterns. This outdoor, family-friendly evening under the stars is taking place now through Oct. 23 in Mukwonago. It’s sure to become an annual tradition! Save $3 a ticket when you go on a weekday (Monday-Friday).

16. Fall Fest in West Bend, WI

Friday, October 14, 2022, 5-7 p.m.
Admission: FREE

Fall Fest downtown West Bend Wisconsin

Dress in your Halloween best to trick-or-treat in downtown West Bend! Look for the pumpkin in the window for participating businesses. There will be lots of spook-tacular activities for the whole family to enjoy! 

17. NEW! Jack-O’-Lantern Jubilee (Red Arrow Park)

Saturday, October 29, 2022, 10 a.m.-2 p.m.
Admission: FREE

Celebrate the spirit of the season at downtown’s new Halloween-themed event, the Jack-O-Lantern Jubilee presented by WaterStone Bank at Red Arrow Park.

Ideal for kids ages 2-8 and their parents, this pumpkin palooza offers a safe environment to celebrate Halloween, complete with loads of free pumpkins, pumpkin decorating, Wes Tank Story Raps, story time with Wanda the Witch, face painting, bubbles, handfuls of free goodies, and oodles of activities for everyone! 

18. Betty BOO’s Spooktacular

Saturday, Oct. 29, 2022, 9:30 a.m. and 12:30 p.m.
Admission: $14 per person

Betty Boo's Spooktacular Betty Brinn Children's Museum Milwaukee Wisconsin Halloween event

At this not-so-scary Halloween event hosted by the Betty Brinn Children’s Museum, you can take a ride on a ghost train, help create a spooky haunt in the Be A Maker space, boogie down at a dance party and visit with Birdy Brinn. Costumes encouraged! (No candy will be distributed at this event.)

There will be two ticketed entry times – morning and afternoon. Afternoon ticket holders will not be admitted before 12:30 p.m. Tickets are available on a first come, first served basis, so reservations are strongly recommended.

19. Black Cat Alley Halloween

Saturday, Oct. 29, 9 a.m.-6 p.m.
Admission: FREE

Black Cat Alley Halloween event East Side Milwaukee Wisconisn

An open-air art gallery located in an East Side alley, Black Cat Alley is hosting a Halloween event with a series of family-friendly activities scheduled during the day.

Local East Side businesses will celebrate Halloween with build-your-own scarecrows, a children’s costume contest and trick-or-treating at Crossroads Collective Food Hall, a Halloween craft event at the East Branch of the Milwaukee Public Library, and a dog costume contest alongside Woof Bowl (Milwaukee’s Food Truck for dogs)!

At 7 p,m,, Black Cat Alley converts to an adult fun zone, with the main event being a Throwback Dance Party featuring DJ Fuzzy Logic and TJK.

20. Cedarburg Pumpkin Walk

Monday, October 31, 2022, 5-9 p.m. 
Admission: FREE

The Cedarburg Chamber’s Pumpkin Walk is a fun, community-wide event that celebrates all things Halloween! Bring your carved pumpkins to light up the street. Come as yourself or wear your costumes and creep down Washington Avenue to view the glowing pumpkins!

The event will take place throughout downtown Cedarburg, along Washington Avenue and to the Visitor Center on Columbia Road. Some stores may offer trick-or-treating until 8 p.m.

21. Hallow-Wishes Halloween Bash (Make-A-Wish Benefit)

Sunday, October 23, 2022, 9:30 a.m.-4 p.m.
Admission: General $50; VIP $100; Children 2 and under FREE
Facebook Page

Join Friend Like Me at Dresden Castle for a Spook-tacular time! Villains of every kind will visit during this not-so-scary benefit for Make-a-Wish Wisconsin. (Costumes are encouraged for our younger friends, but those 12+ should not dress as any villainous guests in order to keep the magic alive.)

General Admission Tickets ($50) include: admission for one child and one adult guardian (additional child and adult tickets available for discounted price) for 2 hours; light snacks, beverages, and desserts; villain meet and greets; live performances; fun themed photo backdrops; a Halloween craft; dance party; and a small vendor area

VIP Admission Tickets ($100) include everything in General Admission, plus 30 extra minutes, VIP Seating near the dance floor, a gift bag, an exclusive meet and greet with Halloween Minnie & Mickey, and professional photos printed on site.

22. Species Spooktacular (Schlitz Audubon Nature Center)

Sunday, October 16, 2022, 10:30 a.m.-4:30 p.m.
Admission $10 per person (Children 2 and under are FREE)

Learn about some of nature’s spooky and misunderstood animals! Wear your Halloween costume to participate in a nature-themed scavenger hunt around Schlitz Audubon’s new ponds and wooded and prairie-lined trails.

Go at your own pace on this self-guided adventure filled with engaging activities. At the end of the scavenger hunt, children receive a sweet treat.

Register for one of three 1.5-hour time slots: 10:30 a.m., 12:30 p.m. or 3 p.m.

23. Little Sprouts Play Café Halloween Events

Various dates and times

Little Sprouts Play Café (locations in Shorewood and Mequon) is hosting a variety of Halloween events that are perfect for even the littlest of ghouls, including pumpkin decorating, family movie night, and a movement party. Click here for a list of events >>

24. Trick-Or-Treat Trains (East Troy Railroad – SOLD OUT)

October 7, 14, 21, and 28, 2022, 5:30-7 p.m.
Admission:  Adults (ages 15+) $23; Children (ages 3-14) $20; Infant/Toddler (ages 0-2) $8.50; Members (ages 3+) $17.

autumn trolley East Troy Railroad Trick-or-Treat Train Wisconsin

New this year, the East Troy Railroad is offering Trick-Or-Treat Trains, running four Fridays in October.

Kids are encouraged to come in costume and take a 20-minute train ride from the East Troy Depot down to Byrnes Park. At the park, there will be trick or treat station and fall activities. When you return to the depot in East Troy, each child can pick out the perfect pumpkin to take home.

The whole experience will last approximately one hour and 20 minutes. Advance reservations required.

25. Pumpkin Pavilion

October 19-23rd, 2022

This four-day, family-friendly event brings over 2,000 Bay View residents and Milwaukee neighbors to Humboldt Park Pavilion. Guests come to carve pumpkins, admire the display of 1,000 lit pumpkins, enjoy live music, eat local food, and embrace the fun that is Halloween. This event is entirely volunteer-powered. Since its inception, the Pumpkin Pavilion has added attractions, displays and new events each year.

26. Ghost Train in Shorewood (CURRENTLY CLOSED)

Corner Bakery Shorewood Cafe – 1305 E. Capitol Drive
Admission: FREE

NOTE: The Ghost Train is currently not operating due to a lighting and audio issue. 

If you’ve never seen the Ghost Train make its nightly run through Shorewood, you’re going to want to take a pajama ice cream ride and check it out.

The Ghost Train is an artistic sensory experience which enables visitors to travel back in history, imagining the round-trip journey of the ‘Twin Cities 400’ which was operated by the Chicago and North Western Railway from 1935-1963 and crossed Capitol Drive at the Oak Leaf Trail Bridge. The Ghost Train was brought to Shorewood by Public Art Shorewood and designed by Marty Peck, CLD-E.

For more Halloween events and trick-or-treat times, check out our Events Calendar >>

Related Articles:

Halloween Displays

Harvest Festivals

Best Pumpkin Patches

Best Corn Mazes for Kids

Did you like this article?

Check out “101 Best Things to do in Milwaukee With Kids“.

Related Posts