The first two-day Halloween VooDoo Fantasy Fest at Leapin' Lizard will be held Friday, Oct. 30, and Saturday, Oct. 31.
Owner Mary Ann "Taz" Evans said the Halloween event has grown in size every year, which encouraged her to expand the festival to two days this year.
"This is the first one of its size," she said about the two-day event.
The VooDoo Fantasy Fest concert sponsor for the event is the Cape Coral Community Redevelopment Agency.
"The CRA sponsors many events in the South Cape," said Helen Ramey, public relations manager of the CRA. "We would like to see the South Cape to be branded as the entertainment and dining district for the city.
"During these challenging economic times, it is inspirational to see businesses stepping up to bring large venues to the city," she said about the VooDoo Fantasy Fest. "It is part of the CRA effort of putting feet on the street and bodies in the businesses."
Other local Halloween events include the Cape Coral First United Methodist Church Trunk-or-Treat event. The community outreach event will provide candy, food and fun for free on Saturday, Oct. 31 from 6 to 8 p.m.
Cape Coral First United Methodist Church is located at 4118 Coronado Parkway. For information, call (239) 542-4051.
Mike Greenwell's will also have its Haunted Hike on Oct. 23-24 and 28-31 for $10 per person.
The Safe Trick or Treat event will also be held for free for children 12 years old or younger on Friday, Oct. 30 from 5-8 p.m. at Greenwell's. Children are asked to come in their costume and bring a donation of pet food or supplies.
Mike Greenwell's is located at 35 Pine Island Road N. For information, call (239) 574-4306.
DayBreak Fellowship will host its Seventh Annual Harvest Festival Saturday, Oct. 31, from 6 to 8:30 p.m. Festival-goers can enjoy pony rides and hayrides, live music, two bounce houses, game booths, hot dogs, chips and drinks and plenty of candy. The event is free. The youth will hold a fund-raising bake sale and raffle with prizes from local retailers and attractions.
The location for the Harvest Festival will be DayBreak's future building site at 2327 S.W. Trafalgar Parkway (at the entrance to the Cape Coral Sports Complex).
For further information, please call the church office at (239) 573-9009, visit the Web site at www.daybreakchurch.net.
Fright Nights return to the Lee County Civic in October. The Haunted House, games, face painting, a bounce house, music and food continue today, Oct. 24, and Oct. 28-31.
"We really do have a spooky Haunted Ride," said center Executive Director Alta Mosley. "And on Saturday, Oct. 31, there will be a Costume Contest for all ages as well as a safe trick or treat provided by local merchants."
The event is sponsored by the Southwest Florida - Lee County Fair Association.
"This is the second year for this event," she said. "It was very popular last year and it is larger than it was last year. We've added some outside things for the little ones - we have a maze and pony rides and some other things."
There will be plenty of things for little children as well.
"The Haunted Ride starts at dusk and is similar to a haunted hay ride," she continued. "You never know what might be waiting for you around the bend or in the barns."
Gates open at 5:30 p.m., the Haunted House opens at 6 p.m. and the Haunted Ride begins at dusk.
Gate admission for adults is $8, Children (6 -12) $4 and children 5 and under are free. Gate admission ticket includes one trip through the Haunted House.
"We are also going to have food and music," she said. "We hope everyone comes out. Everyone here has pitched in to really keep this an affordable event."
For more information, call (239) 543-8368 or visit www.leeciviccenter.com. Lee Civic Center is located at 11831 Bayshore Road.
The VooDoo Fantasy Fest will also raise money for the charity Paws for Patriots for guided companion dogs for wounded soldiers, along with raising money for the Kiwanis Club Backpack Program for children through parking for the event, Evans said.
"Drawings are scheduled both days to benefit the Paws for Patriots Companion Dog Program for wounded soldiers," she said. "The Calendar Girls will also be on hand."
Paws for Patriots is an organization that is a part of the South-eastern Guide Dog School of Palmetto, Fla. The organization, which functions on donations made from the community, trains seeing eye guide dogs for veterans who are blind. The average cost to train one dog is $60,000.
Sam Huber, secretary of the Kiwanis Club of Cape Coral and chairman of the Back-pack Program, said parking for the event will be one block north from the Leapin' Lizard in the church parking lot. Parking will cost $5 per car.
He said there will be signs directing people where to park, along with Key Club members from Cape Coral High School and Kiwanis Club members directing traffic.
"All proceeds are going towards our food drive program," Huber said.
The Kiwanis Club collects food at both of its locations to place in backpacks for hungry children at several schools throughout Cape Coral to ensure that families have enough food for the weekends.
"A barrel will be set up for people to make food donations as well," he said. The barrels will be located in the parking lot.
"We are always accepting food donations and they can be dropped off at either one of our stores," Hubert said. They are accepting non-perishable foods, pastas, dry goods and canned meats.
The two Kiwanis Thrift Stores are located at 708 S.E. 47th Terrace and 652 S. Del Prado at Pine Island Road.
The gates will open at 2 p.m. on both Friday, Oct. 30, and Saturday, Oct. 31, and will feature live music from award-winning bands, a beer fest, a costume contest and a great deal of food.
The Inter-national and Craft Beer Festival will feature 35 brands of beer. Evans said the beer festival will have exotic beers for the "beer tasters who want something different."
Some of the exotic brands include New Castle, Anchor Steam, Abita Purple Haze, Blue Moon, Bells Oberon Ale, Amber Bock, Land Shark and Harp. Miller, Coors, Corona and Budweiser will also be served.
"In addition to a large variety of beer, the Leapin' Lizard is launching the Nolet family (Ketel One) masterpiece from the NetherlandsHarlem Kruiden Liqueur at the VooDoo Fest," Evans said. "This 17th Century herbal liquor has a great nose of fruit, herbs and spice with a soft mandarin orange finish."
"Harlem Bombs and VooDoo Buckets of Icy Smokin' Carib-bean Fruit Rum will be available," she said.
The entertainment for Friday night will feature the hard rock quartet band Nonpoint, at 8 p.m.
The band, which was formed in Fort Lauderdale, broke through the rock scene in January 1998. Since then, the group has released seven CDs, with a new album being released in early 2010. Nonpoint has toured with such bands as Staind, Disturbed, Linkin Park and Sevendust.
On Saturday, Oct. 31, the British Grammy Award-winning band Flock of Seagulls will perform at 8 p.m. The band was formed in Liverpool in 1979 by a group of brothers. They are known for their 1982 hit, "I Ran (So Far Away)."
"The Mixx is the opening band for Flock of Seagulls and will have the 10 p.m. to 2 a.m. dance show after the headliners finish up outside," Evans explained.
The bands Vega Under Fire, Absentee Ballot, Phoenix Falling, Thats A Fact!, Ocean of Theory, T.J. Kelly and High Tide will also be performing during the Voo-Doo Fantasy Fest.
"All the bands are award-winning bands," Evans said.
"It will be the Halloween event of the area. The attendance will be fabulous," Ramey said, adding that, "I definitely will be there on Saturday to see A Flock of Seagulls, that was the genre of my youth and I'm really looking forward to the concert."
Barbecue chicken and pork, hamburgers, brats on pretzel rolls, coconut chicken and peel and eat shrimp are among the foods for sale, Evans said. She said all the food will be under $10 for the event.
"Bring your stadium seats and stay the day," Evans said.
A costume contest will also be held with a prize given to the winner during the VooDoo Fantasy Fest.
"There will be prizes for best costumes, so make sure you get your costumes ready," Ramey said, adding that individuals should leave weapons and hazardous objects at home.
Evans said a great deal of VooDoo trinkets will also be available.
"Ticket were priced nominally at only $10 each day or $15 for a two-day pass," Ramey said.
"If you are not making the long trek to Key West, then you should be going to the VooDoo Fantasy Fest," Ramey said.
Leapin' Lizard is located at the foot of the Cape Coral bridge, on Cape Coral Parkway and east of Del Prado Boulevard.