Today's best bets: Oct. 28

October 28, 2012 

Twisted Woods Haunted House: DeSoto Square mall, 303 301 Blvd. W., Bradenton

Twisted Terror and Quarante, two great haunts under one roof. Twisted Woods focuses on phobias, and while they do not promote gore in their houses, you will definitely be up for a scare. Hours: Dusk to midnight Oct. 28-31. Cost: $15. Information:

Dance Theatre of Bradenton "Carnival of Carnage" Haunted House: Behind Starbucks in the Sweetbay Shopping Plaza, 5505 Manatee Ave. W., Bradenton

The Dance Theatre of Bradenton will hold a "Carnival of Carnage" Haunted House 7-10 p.m. Oct. 28. Admission: $7 adults, $5 students with valid ID and children ages 10 and younger. Proceeds will benefit the Dance Theatre of Bradenton. Information: Julia Krzyzewski 941-840-0863.

Sarasota Pumpkin Festival: Sarasota County Fairgrounds: 3000 Ringling Blvd., Sarasota

The annual Sarasota Pumpkin Festival will be noon-10 p.m. Oct. 28 featuring more than 100 free shows, including trapeze shows, horse and bear shows, puppet shows, and demonstrations, business and craft vendors, pumpkin pie eating contest, pumpkin patch and maze, hay rides, amusement rides, carnival games, inflatables, pony rides, roaming street performers, face painting, live entertainment for the whole family and much more. A new haunted house is open 7 p.m.-midnight nightly for visitors ages 13 and older. The event is open to the public. Tickets: $5 in advance, $7 at the door, children ages 12 and younger are admitted free. Information: 941-365-0818 or visit

Hunsader Farms' 21st annual Pumpkin Festival: 5500 County Road 675, Bradenton

In addition to the greatest pumpkin selection in the region, entertainment includes the top bird act and a BMX bike stunt show, both from the popular TV program "America's Got Talent." Hours are 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Oct. 28. There are also numerous other live music and variety acts, 100-plus craft booths, the charity pumpkin games, the pioneer trades village, hayrides, pony rides, chainsaw sculptor, corn maze, scarecrow displays, rock climbing wall, power jump, petting zoo, barnyard playground, face painting, children's train ride, a juggler, butterfly experience and the frog jumping championship. There are food vendors galore, too, including popular staples such as fresh produce, homemade ice cream, farm roasted sweet corn and, yes, pumpkin pie. Admission: $8; children age 12 and under are free. Parking is $5. Information: 941-322-2168 or

"Wild-O-Ween" Festival: Big Cat Habitat and Gulf Coast Sanctuary, 7101 Palmer Blvd., Sarasota

Big Cat Habitat and Gulf Coast Sanctuary will host an exciting, but not scary, kid-friendly "Wild-O-Ween" Festival 12:30-4 p.m. Oct. 28. Family fun includes visiting with the Habitat's exotic and other animals. Attendees are invited to bring pumpkins and watermelons to toss in for the bears to play with. Refreshments are available for purchase. Donation: $15 adults, $7 children ages 12 and younger. Information: 941-371-6377.

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