BLOOMFIELD HILLS — At Cranbrook, Halloween isn’t just a day on the calendar or an excuse to indulge in a few pieces of candy — it’s an all-out extravaganza.
From the science institute to the art museum, this weekend will be packed with family-friendly activities to celebrate all things spooky, with an educational twist.
Things get started at Cranbrook Institute of Science as guests are welcomed back for the annual Halloween Science event. With three sessions this year, families are invited to haunt the decorated museum and enjoy scary hands-on activities and demonstrations. Costumes are strongly encouraged, according to Stephen Pagnani, head of communications at Cranbrook Institute of Science.
“Halloween Science is one of the institute’s most popular annual events and a good way to explore the science behind the scary — and not so scary,” Pagnani said in an email. “From the scary to the ick, from pumpkin chucking using our trebuchet to demonstrate physics to a chemistry demonstration using liquid nitrogen to create a pingpong ball explosion, this event makes science and the holiday season fun for all ages.”
Not far away, Cranbrook Art Museum is getting into the Halloween Spirit with a special family day that showcases a new exhibit that’s not as much scary as it is gory — or rather, Gorey.
“The exhibition is (titled) ‘Unsettled: The Work of Edward Gorey,’” said Kelly Lyons, curator of education for Cranbrook Art Museum. “There are some younger people who might not have seen some of his things, but Gorey was an inspiration for (poet) Shel Silverstein and (filmmaker) Tim Burton.”
Gorey was an American author and illustrator who famously published elaborately designed books and media with a definitively creepy theme. The exhibition has been open since mid-September, but given the feel of Gorey’s work, the museum thought Halloween would be a great time to invite families in for a hands-on art experience.
“We’ll have a mini-projection room with video of people reading Gorey’s books aloud,” Lyons said. “We’ll be doing accordion books, where kids can make their own accordion book like his, and what I think is the most exciting piece of it is the flipbook exhibition, where we’ll let people make their own contribution to a character to a flipbook that we’ll install in the exhibition next month.”
All ages are welcome to A Very Gorey Family Day at Cranbrook Art Museum, and activities are free with museum admission, which costs $10 for adults, $8 for seniors and $6 for students, and is free for children 12 and younger. The event will be held 11 a.m.-3 p.m. Saturday, Oct. 22.
Halloween Science will take place 6:30-9 p.m. Friday, Oct. 21; 5:30-8 p.m. Saturday, Oct. 22; and 1:30-4 p.m. Sunday, Oct. 23. Tickets at the door cost $18 for nonmembers. For more information, visit science.cranbrook.edu.
Both Cranbrook Art Museum and Cranbrook Institute of Science are located at 39221 Woodward Ave. in Bloomfield Hills.
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