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Growing up weird: Kid-cool Austin activities for October

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Austin Photo Set: Roby_october activities for kids_sept 2012_sidewalk chalk2
 Round Rock Chalk Walk. Courtesy of Round Rock Chalk Walk
Austin Photo Set: Roby_october activities for kids_sept 2012_sidewalk chalk
Lewis the painting mini-donkey and Spike from the Round Rock Express at painting at the Round Rock Chalk Walk. Courtesy of Round Rock Chalk Walk
Austin Photo Set: Roby_october activities for kids_sept 2012_halloween
Austin Photo Set: Roby_october activities for kids_sept 2012_sidewalk chalk2
Austin Photo Set: Roby_october activities for kids_sept 2012_sidewalk chalk
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Halloween: When the memories of wearing a plastic Ben Cooper Halloween costume with a cheap plastic mask return. Remember how we'd suffer for one magical night of free Tootsie Rolls?

These days, Halloween seems more like a month long celebration, making we parents more prone to go digging into the kids’ candy bags at night, stripping them of their best items.

Best to trade off that guilt by taking them to one of the many fall and Halloween activities at local haunts that will (pumpkin) spice up every weekend this October. 

October 5 - 6, Round Rock Chalk Walk and Arts Festival

Show your kids that there’s more to sidewalk chalk than hopscotch and foursquare games. The festival features masterpiece sidewalk drawings, drawn by talented artists who use chalk pastels to ‘paint’ their pictures.

A family-friendly event, live music, food vendors and street performers will keep everyone entertained as they marvel at the concrete creations. Everyone’s favorite Austin kids band, The Biscuit Brothers, will take the stage on Saturday at 11 am.

Celebrate chalk art and let your kids see what can happen when it’s okay to draw on the floor. 

October 12 -13, 19 - 20, 26 - 27, Boo at the Zoo

Head deep into the woods for a spooky time with ghouls, goblins and grizzly bears (oh my!). The kid-friendly alternative to those fright-filled haunted houses, Boo At The Zoo features a haunted train ride that’s more silly than scary.

After that, you’re free to roam the zoo and see what the animals are up to at night. The Austin Zoo is home to rescued tigers, monkeys, birds, and plenty of other animals. 

October 13, National Costume Swap Day 

If your little Avenger is looking to upgrade from last year’s Iron Man costume, think about swapping rather than spending. The Little Gym of Round Rock, Free Fun in Austin, Live Mom and MomCom Austin are hosting a free Halloween costume swap.

National Costume Swap Day is a nationwide initiative to reduce landfill waste associated with Halloween. Swappers will be treated to refreshments as well as open time in the gym. Since four different people have portrayed The Hulk on screen, recycling that giant green costume from last year’s Halloween seems somewhat appropriate. 

October 19, Free Wand Making at The Art Garage

As a certain wizard boy taught us, a wizard’s wand chooses its owner. Unless you know how to get to Diagon Alley (and if you do, please let me know), wizards in our world will have to build their own. The Art Garage is doing their part to spread a little magic with a free Harry Potter-themed craft party. 

The Art Garage is a locally owned walk-in studio that features crafts, art camps and other special events. It’s a great way to introduce the little artist in the family to the world of crafting. No word if wand core options such as unicorn hair or dragon heartstring will be available. 

October 28, Halloween Children’s Concert

Quick, name a popular song about Halloween. Anything? While Christmas may be our favorite singable holiday, there’s enough supernatural music fair to fill a show fit for the Long Center’s Dell Hall.

The Austin Symphony’s annual Halloween Children’s Concert is for boys, girls (or ghouls, if you must) and adults to enjoy some spooky music that will get everyone into the haunted holiday mood. Tickets are only $12 for adults and $8 for kids.

Who knows, you may get some use out of those dance moves you learned in that "Thriller" world record setting dance. 

October 28, Fright At The Museum at Texas Natural Science Center

Bugs. Bones. Snakes. Who knew that learning Texas’ natural history could be frightfully fun?

Crawling bugs and dinosaur bones await little nes during the free Fright At The Museum at the Texas Natural Science Center.

The perfect place to take dino-loving kids, the museum offers Halloween-themed discoveries featuring plenty of critters and educational activities led by the museum’s staff. 

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