The Halloween season has officially begun with the spook-tacular-ly spooky "Haunted Isle" kicking off this year's run at the Shore Line Trolley Museum this weekend.
The museum's annual scarefest for shoreline ghosts, goblins and ghouls will run every Friday and Saturday night from now until Oct. 27.
'Creakily into the Darkness'
The "Boo Crew" — the isle's live cast of "grisly misfits" — put on a one-hour performance each night at 7 p.m., 8 p.m. and 9 p.m.
As the Haunted Isle's website explains:
"Passengers first board an old suburban trolley, which moves creakily into the darkness before halting at the gate to a wooden path. The trail winds through woods filled with blood-splattered humanoids and sadistic clowns, terrifying wayfarers with their grotesque antics and insistence on wearing white after Labor Day."
Yellow Jacket Night: 'Help Us Help Them!'
In addition, the Isle will be open on Halloween, Oct. 31, this year.
The extra evening will serve as a fundraiser for the East Haven High School Yellow Jacket Marching Band, with the first $5,000 raised during the special night going directly to the band.
And from there, anything raised more than the $5,000 on "Yellow Jacket Night" at the Isle, will be split 50/50 between the museum and the marching band.
"We are very appreciative to the community supporting the Museum over the years and we are actively looking for ways to return the good will," Haunted Isle and museum officials stated on their website. "Come on out to The Haunted Isle on the 31st and help us help them!"
'Getting These Ghouls at Night'
To help the shoreline get into the Haunted Isle mood, East Haven Patch recently attended a twilight "Boo Crew" photo shoot at the East Lawn Cemetery — one of the group's favorite haunts — which lays in rest just around the corner from the trolley museum.
There, Jenn Higham — an East Haven native and professional photograper — captured the moment in pictures and video in preparation for this weekend's opening night.
"I have been wanting to do this for two years," she said of the early evening session. "We have done a few day shoots, but it's not the same as getting these ghouls at night."
Higham, who has been the official photographer for the museum for the past two years, added that she's impressed at what a "great bunch of dedicated volunteers" the museum and isle have for this year's Halloween program.
"I love these kids. They keep me going to do something bigger and better every year," she said. "I look forward to this shoot every year. I am happy to be a part of the 'Boo Crew.'"
But not everyone wants a spooky-duper Halloween.
And so, for the town's younger residents, as well as adults looking for a fall time experience that's a little less ghastly, there's the museum's "Pumpkin Patch."
This year's dates are: Oct. 13, 14, 20, 21, 27 and 28. The patch is open at the museum from 11 a.m to 4 p.m.
As part of their time at the patch, each child selects a pumpkin to decorate and take home.
There are also toy trains to play with, coloring stations and an operating toy train layout, as well.
For more information about the Haunted Isle, visit the Boo Crew's website.
And more information on the Pumpkin Patch can be found on the Shore Line Trolley Museum's website.