This past weekend, my daughter, age 5 and her BFF, age 7, celebrated all things spooky at Redmoon's fall family event: Skelebration. It's not a play, it's not a festival: it's an invitation to a magical playground inside Redmoon's Pilsen home (2120 S. Jefferson Street), where kids can harness the scary aspects of Halloween by using their imaginations to find the fun in the sometimes scary holiday.
Here are just a few of the things the girls experienced at their very first Skelebration:
- Redmoon's Celestial Swing, an eerie mausoleum on the outside with a peaceful, ethereal swing inside.
- The UFO Carousel where children can climb inside one of three gigantic flying saucers and spin off into space.
- Redmoon's Spectacle Hall features a massive series of interactive possibilities including, among many other things, a live-animation cinematic experience with a pair of 200-foot-long scrolls unfolding to tell a dynamic adventure story.
- Redmoon's "Cartoon Adventure," a mini movie theater where children and adults don headphones and enjoy five original short animated films by Laura Heit, Joseph Hodgson and Franck Aubrey, Hannes Vartianien and Pekka Veikkolainen, Selina Wagner and PES.
- Families can "picnic" in The Man-Made Lagoon, an intimate space where music fills the air in designer/composer Jake Ruttenberg's sonic adaptation of Orson Welles' radio drama War of the Worlds.
- Redmoon premieres its newest food service device The Pastry Wheel, which whimsically pairs the iconic image of the 1893 Chicago World's Fair Ferris Wheel with urban pedal power, serving cupcakes, brownies and other enticing sweets.
- Performers roam the space serving delightful treats, including signature Redmoon mechanical marvels such as The Floating Trays, The Libation Machine, The Monkey Butlers and The Fish Bubble Man.
If you're looking for a chance to explore the fun and not-so-scary side of Halloween as a family, at your own pace, this is the event for you. Wear costumes if you please, be prepared for lots of sweet and scary treats and tricks, and get ready to shake your bones at this family Skelebration!
Skelebration Entrance Times & Tickets
Audiences can enter Skelebration at staggered entrance times as follows: Oct. 25-26: Saturday at 1 p.m., 4 p.m. and 7 p.m., Sunday at 1 p.m. and 4 p.m.
Adult tickets are $20 (age 18+), youth tickets are $12 (age 4-17) and children are free (age 3 and under). Discounts are available for groups of 10 or more. Tickets are available in advance online at redmoon.org/box-office or by calling 312-850-8440 ext. 123. Tickets will also be available at the door, subject to availability.
Upcoming Party for the Adults: Boneshaker
Following the two weekends of family fun, mom and dad - and the rest of the 21+ party crowd - can escape into Redmoon's fifth annual Halloween event Boneshaker, taking place at 2120 S. Jefferson St. Friday, Oct. 31 (Halloween night) beginning at 9 p.m.