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Franklin Park Conservatory lends eerie scenery, atmosphere for Halloween Soiree

Spirits of Olde: A Halloween Soiree is slated to take place Oct. 31 at the Franklin Park Conservatory.  Credit: Courtesy of the Franklin Park Conservatory

Spirits of Olde: A Halloween Soiree is slated to take place Oct. 31 at the Franklin Park Conservatory.
Credit: Courtesy of the Franklin Park Conservatory

With history dating back to the 1800s, when darkness falls, the Franklin Park Conservatory is sure to create an eerie Halloween. This is exactly what is to be expected at Spirits of Olde: A Halloween Soiree, scheduled for Thursday at the Conservatory.

“The Conservatory’s Palm House was built in the Victorian era, when ladies arrived by horse drawn carriage and Broad Street was but a dirt road. This inspired gem and tropical oasis drew many visitors back in the day. There is a photo of some of these ladies in our lower concourse. Rumor has it they never left and their spirits linger in our halls,” said Eliza Babarczy, food and beverage operations manager at the Franklin Park Conservatory, in an email.

Admission to the event is $15 and includes access to the conservatory’s current exhibit, Bruce Munro: Light, and one drink ticket for those 21 and older. Tickets are available both online and at the door of the event.

Bruce Munro: Light is intended for evening and nighttime viewing, according to Lori Kingston, marketing director at the Franklin Park Conservatory. The exhibition includes 10 light installations throughout the building, Kingston said.

“Some are suspended, some spring from the ground, flash, pulse or simply glow in an array of colors. Thousands of feet of fiber optic cables are employed,” Kingston said in an email.

To create signature cocktails for the event, the conservatory has paired up with Bacardi USA. Patrick Brane, team brand specialist for Bacardi USA, said guests should expect high quality drinks at this event.

“(We) have partnered with the United States Bartenders Guild in Ohio to showcase some of the best mixologists from the top restaurants in Columbus,” Brane said in an email.

Signature drinks include Red Rum, Forbidden Fruit and Spirit of Olde.

Other than some “awesome” signature cocktails, Brane said there will be plenty of dry ice, tarot card readings and fire breathers at the event.

The event is set to feature a photobooth sponsored by We Are Glitterati, performances by DJs Charles Erickson and Donnie Mossman and a Victorian Waltz performance.

Babarczy said both the indoor and outdoor scenery along with the historic aspect of the conservatory are perfect for Halloween. The event will have something for everyone, she said.

“There will be dancing, if you want to dance. If watching is your thing, keep your eyes peeled for fire eating and stilt walking. And if you dare lend your palm to be read, expect mystery and secrets to be revealed,” Babarczy said.

Franklin Park Conservatory is located at 1777 E. Broad St., and the event is set to begin at 5:30 p.m. and end at 10 p.m. Costumes are optional.

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