A Spooktacular Halloween at Seattle Center


No doubt about it, Seattle is a fantastic place for families at Halloween. The 74-acre, pedestrian-friendly Seattle Center (built for the 1962 World’s Fair) is a flurry of free Halloween activities, all steps away from one another. Providing 9 hours of back-to-back activities and crafts, Seattle Center definitely gave us a run for our money this Halloween.

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In the week leading up to Halloween, Five Spice was hard at work painting skeleton costumes (that glow in the dark!) and experimenting with different all-natural face paint recipes. When the big day arrived, each Five had their homemade skeleton outfit (expect High Five’s sweatshirt, found at a second-hand store), ready to customize. Five of Hearts and Five Ball also wanted their faces painted, and the recipe (above) is almost safe enough to eat! To get the black paint, Five Spice mixed some activated charcoal powder into a separate batch.

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The city’s annual Dia de los Muertos celebration spans two days and is filled with crafts, exhibits, and live performances. We left Mexico last year before the holiday, so this was a better-late-than-never chance to learn more about the traditions. There were live performances every hour, and when we needed a break from sitting there were several activity stations (decorate a sugar skeleton, print making, etc.). This is definitely one of the most impressive all-volunteer, free events we’ve ever seen, and it really is a wonderful service to the community.

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Just outside of the Armory is the Experience Music Project’s playground, also completely open to the public. The structures were not for the faint of heart, but the Younger Fives thoroughly enjoyed climbing and sliding in the shadow of the Space Needle (and the light rain only made the slides even faster!).

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We ended our long, action-packed day back in the Armory, this time at the Children’s Museum Halloween Open House. Another wonderful free, volunteer-led activity, the Open House was full of Halloween-themed games, plenty of treats, and a chance to explore the Museum’s regular exhibits. By the time the kids made shields, built structures out of foam building blocks, and tried their hand at pumpkin mini golf, they were finally ready to head back to our rental. Even with the Halloween treats, all the fun made for a sound night’s sleep 🙂


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