Here in the desert southwest we are always very excited when the weather cools down and we can go back to enjoying nature in the comfort of cooler temperatures. Oro Valley is no exception; we have many wonderful activities, the majority of which take place in the great outdoors. 

The month of events starts off Friday night, Oct. 8, with a spooky good time at the Oro Valley Monster Mash. This event takes place at Steam Pump Ranch and includes, games, crafts, music, pumpkin decorating, jumping castles, food trucks and more! On Your Left Fitness is also a part of the festivities, putting on a costume-themed 5K. There will also be many carnival style booths, including one provided by the Children’s Museum, popcorn provided by the Youth Advisory Council and a booth provided by the Oro Valley Rotary Club. You are encouraged to purchase tickets in advance at PlayOV.com for only $5.

The very next day we return to Steam Pump Ranch to kick off the weekend on Saturday with the return of our full Second Saturday at Steam Pump Ranch. This event includes country and Americana art and antique vendors as well as tours of the property hosted by the Oro Valley Historical Society. These tours will be guided and include the Pusch House Museum and other buildings on the property. Live music will be provided by “Cowboy at Heart” and an educational archaeology presentation will be provided by Archaeology Southwest. As with each Second Saturday a free children’s craft project will also be provided to those who are interested. All activities are in conjunction with the Heirloom Farmers Market, which makes the Ranch home every Saturday morning.

When the sun sets things get really spooky. Beginning at 7 p.m., the night of Oct. 9 will be the kickoff to this year’s Haunted Hayride. These wonderful hayrides tour you around “Arizona,” or the back field of the Ranch, to share with you all of the fun spooky lore that exists within our state. It’s a trip down memory lane and history lane, with a little bit of fun folklore mixed in. Don’t miss this great fun way to enjoy the Halloween season. These hayrides then continue every Saturday throughout the month of October. Tickets must be purchased in advance at PlayOV.com

The Halloween month closes with the return of our annual Spooktacular event on Oct. 29 at the Oro Valley Community and Recreation Center. Spooktacular event hours are 5 p.m. to 8 p.m. and will include music, food trucks, photo opportunities, contests and games, a craft area, hayrides and trick or treating. Local businesses decorate golf carts and provide candy for children in a safe and festive

environment. This is a free event that will have food as well as alcoholic and non-alcoholic beverages available for purchase. The Oro Valley Community & Recreation Center is one of Oro Valley’s gems and this is a great way for your little ones to enjoy the Halloween season in a safe environment. 

It has been quite a while since we have all been able to get together, and the Parks and Recreation Department is thrilled to be providing events again, and we hope to see you out and about this October. Happy trick or



Lynanne Dellerman-Silverthorn is Oro Valley’s Recreation and Cultural Services manager.

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