What is How-To Halloween?

How-To Halloween is a grass-roots event dedicated to fostering the do-it-yourself spirit of the haunting season. The first of its kind in the country, its tagline “What can you create in your laboratory?” exemplifies its goal: to inspire kids and their parents to head to the garage, basement or local maker space and build something cool for the holiday. It promises to be fun, educational, and inspirational with over fifty exhibits, displays, contests, and hands-on activities.

Is this festival appropriate for young children?

Yes! Parents can rest assured that their little ones will have tons of fun in a safe, indoor environment reminiscent of the excitement that happens in your own neighborhood on Halloween night. With the Downtown Lansing Zombie Walk happening on Saturday (which is about as family-friendly as it can be), we are calling Sunday our “Kid’s Day” with no startle scares or frightening gore on display. Of course, there will be a haunted house with a private entrance, but access is limited to adults and teens.

Should we dress in costume?

We strongly encourage ghouls and goblins of all ages to arrive in your coolest, most amazing creations and be a part of the huge spectacle at the show. But for those not fully decked out, we’ll have face painters on hand to help out along with some maker sessions showing how-to build elements of your own costume. Also, be sure to bring a bag because there will be trick-or-treating stations throughout the exhibit hall.

When is the Downtown Lansing Zombie Walk?

The Downtown Lansing Zombie Walk kicks off day one of the festival starting at the Lansing Center. Founded in 2010, all ages of the undead are welcome to walk for free. Participants are asked to bring a non-perishable food donation in support of the Greater Lansing Food Bank. Please check the Z-Walk Facebook page for all the latest details.

Are there any additional fees after entering the festival?

How-To Halloween was designed from the outset to be very affordable for the entire family. Once you walk through the doors, there are a huge variety of activities available for no additional charge that will keep you busy for hours. Some organizations may charge a small additional fee (usually only a few bucks) to cover the cost of materials for certain how-to sessions. There are also many vendors who are offering unique Halloween-themed items for sale for those who’d like to do a little shopping. In the end, you’ll have a fun-filled day for your whole crew at a really great value.

Will there be food available?

The North Point Cafe will be open right across from our exhibit hall in the Lansing Center with a wide variety of food and beverage choices, including grilled items, available at reasonable prices.

Is the event wheelchair accessible?

The Lansing Center is fully ADA compliant with wide entry doors and easily accessible elevators.

Are cameras and video recording equipment permitted?

We encourage guests to shoot away with photos and video. Please be sure to share your memories on social media and help spread the word about our show.

What’s the deal with the cartoon pumpkin thingy?

Robot Pumpkin is the name of our mascot which represents all the innovative tech and mischievous curiosity that we promote at our event. You can see an audioanimatronic version of him (custom built out of some repurposed junk) as you enter the main doors of the exhibit hall.

Does How-To Halloween benefit any charities?

We provide many opportunities to support charities and the local community through our event. A portion of our proceeds go to the Lansing Youth Scholarship Fund and we are accepting donations for the Greater Lansing Food Bank during the Downtown Lansing Zombie Walk. Also, some of our exhibitors and vendors are collecting for other charitable organizations (such as the 501st Legion benefiting Make-A-Wish), so please give generously... and thanks for your help.

Where do I park?

There is an abundance of public parking lots in Downtown Lansing, but we recommend finding a spot at a meter because it’s free to park all weekend long.