The pandemic may have squelched some of the fervor around Halloween, but area groups and businesses have a few tricks up their sleeves to stir up some festive fun to mark the spooky holiday.

A special outdoor trick-or-treat event, celebrating the annual “Halloween at the Y,” is set for 6 to 8 p.m. Saturday, Oct. 31, at the Altru Family YMCA. The event will feature a Treat Street and a Monster Mash Dance Party in the east parking lot at the YMCA, 215 N. Seventh St.

Trick-or-treat tables will be spaced about 20 feet apart and trick-or-treaters will be invited to line up and follow a designated route while distancing from other groups. Trick-or-treaters will be asked to wear masks. All volunteers and YMCA staff members will wear masks and gloves while handing out candy and treats, said Patti McEnroe, the YMCA’s marketing and membership director.

Area businesses have been invited to sponsor a trick-or-treat station to help with the purchase of candy and treats, McEnroe said. Sponsors are invited to decorate their stations and hand out treats; otherwise, volunteers will do so.

Volunteers are needed for this event, she said.

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For questions on sponsorship, volunteering or general event information, call Jimmy Rawl at the YMCA, (701) 775-2586, or send an email to

The Crooked Pint, 1930 S. Columbia Road, is sponsoring a free event from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturday, featuring pumpkins for decorating and games. Costumes are encouraged.

The Halloween Trick or Treat Drive-thru events is planned for 3 to 4 p.m. Saturday at Valley Senior Living, 4004 24th Ave. S. For the outside event, participants are asked to wear a costume and make a sign of encouragement or a Halloween greeting for the residents, but not exit the vehicle. When driving through to get a treat and show a sign, staff will take pictures and video that will be shared with residents in their rooms. Retrax of Grand Forks is the event sponsor.

Hope Church in the Grand Cities Mall is hosting a “HOPE-o-ween drive-thru trick or treat tunnel” that is open to all from 5 to 8 p.m. Saturday.

The Rydell Car Wash “Tunnel of Terror” is planned for 6 to 8 p.m. Saturday at the Gateway location only. Cost is $15 per vehicle or a FastPass; there will be flashing lights.

In East Grand Forks, the annual Haunted Heritage Village Family Event is set for 6 to 8 p.m. Friday, Oct. 30, for families with children. The event features a drive through the grounds to see the displays and costumed characters. An activity and treat bag will be given to each child. Admission is free; canned goods will be collected for the local food cupboard. The Heritage Village is located at 219 20th St. N.E.

Several other area communities are planning events for kids and adults to enjoy.

Cavalier scavenger hunt

On Saturday, Cavalier, N.D., is hosting a Trick or Treat Scavenger Hunt from 10:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. Kids receive a “clue card” at the town’s skating rink and head to various businesses to collect candy. Everything will take place outside and children will visit businesses spread out around town, not descending on one place all at once, said Casey Krieg, Cavalier recreation director. Businesses have found unique ways to distribute candy, and avoid touching, such as delivering it through a PVC pipe, Krieg said.

This is a first-time event for Cavalier, which usually hosts a parade featuring kids in Halloween costumes the Saturday before Halloween, she said.

“We would get about 235 kids participating and some businesses would hand out candy,” Krieg said. “We get quite a few views on our web-cam."

Crookston trunks

The second annual “Trunk or Treat” is set for 4 to 6 p.m. Saturday at the Cobblestone Hotel in Crookston. At the free event, a prize will be given for the best decorated trunk. The hotel, which is sponsoring the event, is located at 2304 Sahlstrom Drive.

Larimore haunts

Looking for a frightening experience? Head to Larimore, N.D., on Friday, Oct. 30, for haunted house events. Good Friends bar, at 220 Towner Ave., is hosting a haunted house from 5 to 9 p.m. Friday in the building’s basement. Cost is $5 for adults and $3 for kids. The names of those who attend this event, and the haunted house event Friday at Willy’s in Larimore, will have a chance to win a gift basket. Anyone who is not feeling well should not attend, said owner Emily Trosen.

Also in Larimore, Willy’s bar and restaurant is hosting a haunted house tour on Wednesday, Friday and Saturday, Oct. 28, 30 and 31. Guided tours of seven haunted rooms in the building’s auditorium will be offered from 7 to 9 p.m. for a cost of $5 for adults and $3 for students, said Mark Williamson, co-owner, adding that, if he knows young kids are coming, the tour can be altered “so it’s not terribly scary.” Kids can enter through the bowling alley entrance.

A Halloween party -- with a costume contest, games and prizes -- is planned for Saturday. Heather Bridgeman, co-owner, is the “mastermind” behind the Halloween festivities, which are “double from what it was last year,” Williamson said.

Northwood pumpkins

The Hut Bar in Northwood, N.D., is planning a pumpkin-carving contest from 6 to 8 p.m. Wednesday, Oct. 28. The contest is open to everyone; pumpkins and carving supplies will be provided. Voting will take place, and prizes awarded to winners on Saturday, Oct. 31. The Hut Bar, at 6 N. Main St., is serving a Ceasar bar, with barbecue on a bun and chips, from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday. In-town delivery will be available; call Laura Sanda in advance, (218) 779-8004, to place an order. A freewill offering will be taken, with proceeds going to the Ice Storm youth hockey league. The Trunk and Treat event, featuring socially distanced area businesses, runs from 2 to 4 p.m. Saturday in the Alerus Bank parking lot. That evening, the Halloween Party is planned, with music by guitarist Brady Paulson. Guests are encouraged to come in costume to participate in the costume contest.

Park River music

A “Trunk or Treat” event is set for 4 to 6 p.m. Saturday at Our Savior’s Lutheran Church parking lot, 129 Harris Ave. S. in Park River, N.D. There will be a hip hop performance by the group, “Just for Kix.” The event is presented by the Park River Community Club. Anyone who’s interested in bringing a vehicle and handing out treats is asked to contact Nannette at

Thief River Falls treats

Thief River Falls, Minnesota, is hosting its seventh annual Halloween Trick-or-Treating event from 4 to 7 p.m. Saturday. Kids are invited to stop by and pick up treats at numerous businesses. Participating businesses are listed on the Thief River Falls Chamber of Commerce Facebook page. The event is sponsored by the Kidz First Foundation and ACE Rent-All.