There’s something so special about celebrating a child’s first holiday, and Halloween in the Denver/Boulder area proves especially fun. However, it can be a bit overwhelming, and most people don’t want to end up with their sweet newborn in the middle of a zombie bar crawl or at an event where it’s hard to move and see things.
“As a first time parent I’ve realized how many events I previously attended that are 21-and-up,” said Breanna Phippen, who had her daughter this past spring.
“I’ve been on the hunt for new events and activities that are family friendly, and more importantly, infant friendly.”
That’s where we come in. Each of these things should be easy to do with an infant, well as easy as anything with an infant is.
We added helpful tips and events that don’t take a lot of time, tend to be less crowded, and are budget friendly.
After all, as much fun as the Denver Zoo’s Wild Fall is, it may not be worth the admission when you only have a two hour window (unless you’re a member, then there’s no fee for the October-long festival).
One piece of advice to follow with a baby, keep expectations low and do things you actually want to do and go to places with plenty of photo opportunities.
“She might not enjoy Halloween, dressing up, or trick-or-treating,” added Phippen, who runs Bites With Bre and wrote the book, Denver Food Crawls: Touring the Neighborhoods One Bites & Libation at a Time. “But with a baby under one, it’s more for the parents to enjoy and start family holiday traditions.”
Halloween With a Baby Tips
1. Dress your baby in a simple costume that’s easy to remove for changing and doesn’t have anything on it the child can pull off.
2. Make sure to bring costume or outfit changes in case of blowouts or crazy spit ups.
3. Naps might need to be on the go since a lot of activities are around our baby’s nap or bed time, or plan in between the napping periods depending on how old your baby is.
4. Pay attention to the weather, especially if attending any outdoor events. After all, Halloween in Colorado is notorious for snowstorms and/or freezing rain.
5. Charge your phone in order to catch all those adorable first moments.
Find a Costume
This might be one of the funnest things about being a new parent, the chance to dress your child however you want to. We’re talking baby lobsters to go with that chef outfit, Toto in Dorthy’s basket a la Wizard of Oz, or a real baby Baby Yoda.
Keep in mind any sort of animal onsie is great because it’s cute, cozy, and they can wear it more than just one night.
Check out online moms’ and kids’ groups too, often there are gently-used costumes for sale or even for free.
Take in Decorations
“I cannot wait to decorate our house and front porch,” said Phippen. “Our little one has been enjoying the neighbors’ decorations while on walks, so I know she will love to see our house transformed.”
This activity is easy to do, as long as your neighbors have haunted up their house. If not, find an area that does Halloween proper and take a stroll any time of day or night with the little one in tow.
Best part, if they fall asleep you can do it again the next day if you want.
Little Man Ice Cream Pumpkin Patch
Pop in for a scoop of handmade ice cream and some photos with the spooky decor and pumpkin patch at Little Man Ice Cream in LoHi. In fact, the outside cafe is all set up for the perfect selfie and family picture moments, and plenty of friendly people around to snap a photo of the whole group.
While there, look for the perfect pumpkin, prices range from $3 to $12. All the squash comes from local spots including Pope Farms Produce in Wiggins and Bartels Farm in Fort Collins.
Not that you have to purchase anything in order to enjoy the setting, and babies are too little to know about begging for ice cream, yet.
Details: 2620 16th St., 303-455-3811; Open Sunday-Thursday from 11am – 10pm, and Friday-Saturday from 11am – 11pm.
Cost: Free, but ice cream and pumpkins are various prices
Bugtober at Butterfly Pavilion
Little ones love seeing things move about, and the Butterfly Pavilion in Westminster is a great place to watch butterflies, see sea creatures and watch big bugs crawl around in the enclosed displays.
The insect museum is small, so going through doesn’t take much time.
In October the special spider pavilion opens up. Don’t worry, babies aren’t scared of these insects and arachnids. Bonus, babies are free!
Details: 6252 W. 104th Ave., Westminster; 303-469-5441; Open daily from 9am-5pm.
Cost: Kids under 2 are free, children 2-12 are $9.50, seniors 65+ are $12.50, and adults are $14.50
Local Trunk or Treat Events
Check out your local fire or police station for trick-or-treating events. Many of these public institutions will have something fun for the kids to do, and plenty of safety tips and treats.
Bonus, most of these events are inside, so you can do them even when the weather is bad.
“I plan to take our baby to our local police department’s trunk or treat,” said Phippen, who plans to go to the Adams County event on October 28. “It’s indoor and free and, although she can’t eat candy, it is fun to see other kids dressed up.”
Most places haven’t announced details on trunk-or-treating, but follow your local firehouse and/or police department for more information. Or, find a bunch listed on our main Halloween for kids post HERE.
Photo Opportunities at Bee Hugger Farm
With a new baby, chances are you’re tired and don’t want too much hustle and bustle during an event. That’s where Bee Hugger Farm in Longmont comes in.
This darling spot is perfect for young kids to run around, see some animals, wander among sunflowers, climb a hay bale and pick a pumpkin.
Of course a baby can’t do any of that, but there are plenty of ways for them to see colors, smell the fresh air and gently touch things.
Plus, the farm has many spots to snap a million of fall-centric pictures of and with your baby. And, on weekends, the farm hosts family hayrides for $5 a person.
Details: 12590 Ute Highway, Longmont; 303-330-8277; Open everyday from 8am to dusk; no dogs allowed.
Cost: Free to enter and payment for extras on the honor system via cash or Venmo
Howl-a-ween Pet Parade at Union Station
Daytime events are key when it comes to talking babies out. That’s why the annual pet parade and costume extravaganza downtown is perfect for families.
Babies and adults can watch the cute creatures strut their stuff, and if you have a dog, bring them along in a costume. Or better yet, match your pooch and baby for extreme Halloween cuteness.
Details: 1701 Wynkoop; 303-592-6712; October 23 from 1-3pm.
Glow at the Gardens
Each year the Denver Botanic Gardens fills the 23 acres (more or less) with lights and some “scary” aspects, and it’s just beautiful.
But, just because babies might enjoy watching the glowing orbs and listening to the witches’ cackles, chances are they will be asleep. But it doesn’t matter, it’s free to bring them in.
For this reason, and because the terrain can be narrow and uneven, it’s best to wear your baby. That way they can take it in while cozied up, and you can grab a warm apple cider to sip along the way.
Another nice thing about this annual fete, it can last as long or short as you want.
Details: 1007 York St.; 720-865-3500; Runs October 18-23 from 6 to 9pm.
Cost: Purchase tickets in advance for $25 for adults, $21 for kids 3-15, and kids under 3 are free
Munchkin Masquerade in Boulder
Want a dose of trick-or-treating without a lot of commitment or wandering up to strangers’ houses? On October 31 from 3-6pm the businesses down Pearl Street in Boulder will open their doors while you open your candy bag and host a little-kid friendly event.
Over 30 vendors are participating along the stretch between 9th to 24th Streets.
And yes, it’s totally okay to get candy for that adorable baby, even if they don’t eat it. Bonus, do a little shopping and art perusing along the way.
For even more events for kids this Halloween, check out our long list of spooktacular kid fun HERE.