.Culture Crush: A Great Pumpkin Party, FUNtazmagoria, Hometown Halloween in Napa, and More.


Great Pumpkins

The community gathers for a fall celebration at the Sonoma Community Center’s Great Pumpkin Party. Attendees can bring their already-carved and/or -decorated pumpkins to be entered into the Pumpkin Contest; or come and decorate a provided small gourd or pumpkin, or join in a communal art project on a large pumpkin. Additionally, attendees can purchase seasonally appropriate refreshments while enjoying classic Halloween music or viewing the Peanuts classic 1966 Halloween special, It’s the Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown. Party with pumpkins on Thursday, Oct. 28, at 276 E Napa St., Sonoma. 5:30–7pm. Free. sonomacommunitycenter.org.


Being There

Opening its 102nd season, Novato Theater Company presents The Importance of Being Earnest for their first full in-person production since the pandemic began. The company updates Oscar Wilde’s Victorian setting to the swinging 1960s in England, highlighting the era’s gender-bending fashion, long hair, rock music and counterculture thinking. Bring proof of vaccination and photo ID, along with face coverings, for Novato Theater Company’s live run of Earnest, opening with a preview performance on Thursday, Oct. 28, and running Fridays and Saturdays, 7:30pm, and Sundays, 2pm, through Nov. 21, at 5420 Nave Dr., Novato. $15–$27. novatotheatercompany.org.

Santa Rosa

Spooky Fun

For two days in October, the Children’s Museum of Sonoma County transforms into the FUNtazmagoria, an interactive and illuminating Halloween experience for families that promises to spook, but not scare. Highlights of the fundraising event include the pumpkin plop, in which engorged gourds fall from the sky and go splat. There’s also a mad scientist lab, a glow-in-the-dark art studio, carnival games, a haunted garden bursting with hands-on activities and more. FUNtazmagoria is open to the public Friday and Saturday, Oct. 29–30, at 1835 West Steele Lane, Santa Rosa. 1–8pm. $14, free for museum members. Cmosc.org.


Halloween Town

Napa starts Halloween fun on Saturday, Oct. 30. Kids and their adults can come in costume for Hometown Halloween, where downtown stores and businesses that display orange and black balloons will hand out candy from 11am to 1pm. Elsewhere, the Napa Farmers Market turns into the Halloween Haunted Market with a photo booth, prizes and treats, from 8am to noon. The Meritage Resort and Spa hosts the Family Fall Fest, featuring games, crafting, candied apples and a pet costume contest, noon to 6pm. Feast It Forward presents Feast or Treat, offering trick-or-treat stations, face painting and wine pairings for the adults. Donapa.com.

—Charlie Swanson

Charlie Swanson
Charlie Swanson is a North Bay native and an arts and music writer and editor who has covered the local scene since 2014.
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