The spooky season is upon us and fall is certainly in the air. In Climax Springs, Suzie Brooks and her group of friends are ready to launch the second annual Haunted Forest and Hayride, benefitting the Northwest Fire Protection District.

The spooky season is upon us and fall is certainly in the air. In Climax Springs, Suzie Brooks and her group of friends are ready to launch the second annual Haunted Forest and Hayride, benefitting the Northwest Fire Protection District.

Brooks says the group of 10 friends loves the Halloween season and decided last year to turn this love into a positive experience for the community. The group met up with the owners of the Boondockz Lakefront Bar & Restaurant and asked if they could have access to the woods behind the establishment. The restaurant agreed and the girls got to work.

Each friend is given a tree to decorate in a Halloween theme. Brooks says they use lights, decorations and whatever else is needed to dress up their tree. Then, on the night of the event, they each dress as a witch and station the tree they decorated as children and families walk around and trick or treat while seeing the creations. They also have a hayride set up for families to take a trip around the woods to see of the trees that way instead.

Alongside the tree attractions, the event is also host to a basket auction that goes to pay for the expenses of the event and excess funds are donated to a cause the group of friends determines beforehand. This year, Brooks says they will be donating the excess funds to the Northwest Fire Protection District. They hope to benefit local businesses and services each year moving forward and may use next year’s funds on a community playground.

Basket auction items may include things such as oil change certificates, restaurant gift cards and more. Kids under 12 that attend will also be able to grab a hotdog and chips donated by Boondockz.

“It’s just really awesome,” Brooks said. “Next year it might even be bigger and we couldn’t be more excited.”

The public is invited to enjoy the Haunted Forest and Hayride event on October 24 behind Boondockz in Climax Springs. Children can enjoy the witch trees from 5:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m. with the auction taking place from 5:00 p.m. to 8:00 p.m. Brooks noted that the witches will be wearing facemasks and likely using tongs to had out candy in order to properly social distance and to keep everyone safe.