It’s easy to enjoy every month in Lawrence, but October is steeped in wonderful weather and fun autumn traditions, and therefore is one of the best times of the year. Whether you are an all-out pumpkin carving master or simply an admirer of the colored leaves, October holds so much to be enjoyed. This month we have a number of performances for you, be it a parade, a haunted tour, or a theater event. The culmination of October is the fun on Halloween – getting to choose a costume and enact in a performance of your own! Enjoy the lead-up to the 31st by spending the Final Weekend with us. You may even start some new fall traditions!
First things first: the KU Homecoming Parade. Lawrence loves a parade, and this one is no exception. People will line Massachusetts St. to get the best view of the floats and festivities, so you want a clear view, you should show up early to snag a spot. Once the parade is over, you have your choice of art exhibits, shops, restaurants and galleries to explore downtown. You won’t want to miss Louis Copt’s new exhibit at the Fayman Gallery. Copt is a Kansas native and multi-faceted artist who is not tied to any one medium – his latest works, Variations on the Kansas Barn, are bold and colorful paintings. There will also be new works from Zak Barnes at the Cider Gallery and Barry Fitzgerald at Tallgrass Studios.
Theatre Lawrence is hosting an interactive Beatles Experience, Yesterday and Today, Friday night. Don’t show up five minutes to showtime or you’ll miss out on half the fun – you get to help build Billy MgGuigan and his band’s setlist as you enjoy appetizers from RND Grille. If comedy is what you seek, then grab tickets to Serial Cereal at the Guild Theater. The monthly comedy show is back with three new episodes that are sure to tickle your funny bone.
Are you someone who enjoys getting a little spooked? Do you love haunted halls and stories of spirits who can’t let go? Even if you just love history, Ghosting Lawrence: A Theatrical Tour of Downtown Haunts is sure to thrill. The event starts at the Lawrence Arts Center, but don’t get too comfortable – this tour will take you through six blocks of downtown haunts. With the help of some frisky spirits, your tour guide Ric Averill will walk you through a ghostly history. You may just learn something – or feel something – you hadn’t bargained for.
If your capacity for fear is Wonder Fair’s Haunted Bathroom, then you won’t want to miss their Friday night Soundtrack Release. Wonder Fair is releasing two site-specific soundtracks: Jade Rose: The Valley and Sounds from the Haunted Bathroom. Jade Rose, Free Music and Paul and Joe DeGeorge will perform live at the event, but I have a feeling that the real showstopper will be the Sounds from the Haunted Bathroom cassette tape for sale – if you’ve frequented the ghostly spot, then you just might be featured on a track.
This weekend is Homecoming for the University of Kansas! This means there will be lots of spirited energy in the air and folks enjoying the beautiful campus and downtown area. If you hear a spirited “Rock Chalk!” shouted cheerfully while walking down Massachusetts Street, don’t hold back your resounding “Jayhawk!” Starting at 3:30 p.m., there will be a Rock Chalk Rally and Homecoming Tailgate at the KU Union and neighboring David Booth Memorial Stadium.
If you haven’t already visited this month, consider spending part of your Saturday at Schaake’s Pumpkin Patch. This family-friendly farm is a Halloween-season classic and overs autumn delights for all. There are rows and rows of pumpkins to pick from, as well as hayrides, a hay maze, farm animals to see and handmade crafts and kettle corn for sale. I would advise arriving early or coming later in the afternoon to avoid the main rush, as parking will fill up fast!
Lawrence Beer Company is offering a private tour and tastings Sunday morning before they open to the public for the day. The tour includes a guided tasting with the head brewer, Sam. Purchase tickets to reserve your spot and sip away the day!
If you’re looking for something that the kids will enjoy, then head over to Prairie Park Nature Center for cookies, cider and trick or treating around Mary’s Lake. Don’t forget your costume!