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HalloWeekends at Cedar Point opens with thrills and chills

Published: September 16, 2016 12:00 AM
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Cedar Point's fall festival of fright is here, and family fun is lurking around every corner! From The Great Pumpkin Fest to Haunt, the spectacular 20th year of HalloWeekends is set to delight and scare beginning Sept. 16.

The event kicks off with "last rites" and rides given on Mean Streak, the park's massive wooden roller coaster. The ride will be open from 6 to 7 p.m. on Sept. 16 with a special ceremony and funeral procession to the Dead Rides Cemetery at 7:30 p.m. All guests who ride Mean Streak on Friday night will also receive a special souvenir and other prizes as the park pays tribute to this wooden rattler.

To celebrate 20 years of fear, HalloWeekends features the following new additions to the event:

The Great Pumpkin Parade - Starring everyone's favorite Peanuts characters, this all-new experience celebrates the 50th Anniversary of "It's the Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown" and brings it to life with colorful floats, silly characters and the most famous beagle of them all, Snoopy. Guests can watch the parade every Saturday and Sunday at 4 p.m., weather permitting.

New Skeleton Key Rooms - Guests can kick their fears up a notch with five all-new rooms, located along the Frontier Trail. Inside, they'll encounter intense haunted experiences that are not for the faint of heart. Access to the Skeleton Key rooms is granted with the purchase of Fright Lane, giving guests one-time, front-of-the-line access to all haunted houses.

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Blood Drums - Located in front of Giant Wheel, this new show is percussive, immersive and impressive! A cast of talented drummers uses items usually found in a junkyard to create high-energy percussive music that's blazing with bass and thrashing with major rhythm, blood and sweat.

As a nod to the 50th Anniversary of "It's the Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown," the daytime fun of The Great Pumpkin Fest is back again and bigger than ever. Popular favorites for kids return, like Franklin's Tractor Trek - a hay bale course where they can use their pedal power to race each other on miniature tractors; Linus' Mummy Pit - a foam pit that's just like a bubble bath, but without the water; Trick-or-Treat with the Peanuts - kids can meander through Kiddy Kingdom for sweet treats; and The Magical House on Boo Hill - a not-so-haunted house with fun surprises around every corner.

If that's not enough, even more daytime fun awaits with Count Snooptacula's Kids' Costume Contest, Pig Pen's Pumpkin Painting, Charlie Brown's Coloring Zone, Sally's Craft Corner, Marcie's Monster Mash Bash dance party and drive-in movie showings of "It's the Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown" at Joe Cool's Dodgem School each evening.

Activities at The Great Pumpkin Fest are available Saturdays & Sundays from 11 a.m. to 7 p.m.

Each night when the sun sets during HalloWeekends, the park takes on an entirely sinister feel as fog creeps through the intricate structures of popular rides and coasters. A highlight of the nighttime atmosphere is The HalloWeekends Great Pumpkin Spectacular. The whimsical faces of carved pumpkins burst to life in this special display of more than 1,000 pumpkins, most of them hand-carved and positioned along the Top Thrill Dragster Midway.

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If being scared is the order of the night, guests will experience the rise of evil when HAUNT begins with "The Call of the Scare" in Celebration Plaza every Friday & Saturday night at 7:30 p.m. The creatures from the park's six outdoor scare zones, including Cut Throat Cove, Tombstone Terror-tory, Blood on the Bayou and more, come together for a conjuring of evil before they're set loose to their domains.

The park's six indoor mazes are also set for mortal visitors. Back for its second year, Slaughter House will induce tears and screams as guests walk through its hallways lined with slotted walls and animals looking for fresh meat. Zombie High School, G.A. Boeckling's Eerie Estate, Hexed, Eternity Infirmary and Eden Musee round out the lineup of haunted attractions.

Spectacular live entertainment that can only be seen during HalloWeekends is back, including the extremely popular "Skeleton Crew" show. Aerialists, contortionists and high-wire walkers combine with high-energy music and lighting for an experience the family will not want to miss. "Sideshow: A Carnival of Magic," "Spooky Shenanigans" and "The Edge of Madness" are also ready to rock the senses.

After getting scared and spooked, guests are sure to conjure up an appetite. Unique dining experiences are available, like Boeckling's Banquet, set in the hallowed halls of the G.A. Boeckling's Eerie Estate haunted house. Featuring menu items like filet mignon and succulent seafood, it's a fine dining experience guests won't want to miss!

Right around the corner from Boeckling's Banquet and inside Joe Cool Caf, guests can enjoy the Night of the Living Fed all-you-can-eat buffet. Menu items include fried fowl, gory pasta salad, baked brains & cheese, spaghetti & eye balls and more.

Boeckling's Banquet is available on Fridays at 5:30 p.m. and Saturdays at 12:30 p.m. Night of the Living Fed is available Saturdays at 4:30 and 6:30 p.m. Advanced purchase is recommended for both dining experiences.

What's more, the park's rides and coasters are ready for screams of a different kind, including the new, world-record-breaking Valravn dive coaster. Everything from the swinging maXair to the Cedar Point & Lake Erie Railroad and even Planet Spooky's pint-sized thrillers are open for guests to enjoy. (Limited ride availability on Friday nights.)

After sharing terrifying experiences with friends, why go home? Cedar Point's Hotel Breakers and Breakers Express are offering the Ultimate HalloWeekends Package. This money-saving offer provides a 60-percent savings off of gate pricing and includes a two-night stay, free Friday night admission plus all-day admission for Saturday and Sunday with Early Entry and Cedar Point parking for all three days. Reservation information and additional package options available at cedarpoint.com/stay or by calling 419-627-2106.

HalloWeekends is open every Friday night from 6 p.m. to midnight, Saturdays from 11 a.m. to midnight and Sundays from 11 a.m. to 8 p.m. through October 30. On Sunday, October 9, special hours will be 11 a.m. to 10 p.m.

A visit to HalloWeekends can be free with the purchase of a 2017 Season Pass. All new 2017 Season and Platinum Passes include one free fall visit valid any single operating day through October 30. Plus, additional visits in the fall are just $14.99 each for all new 2017 Season Passholders.

For complete information on The Great Pumpkin Fest and Haunt, guests can visit halloweekends.com.


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