When creepy clowns, spooky skeletons and giant hairy spiders started moving into Aria's living room she thought they were terrifying. But now she loves them.
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Aria's mum Tara Gillett is one of many Dubbo locals who've eagerly embraced Halloween despite some naysayers who still shun the season.
Each year, Ms Gillett decorates her Wingewarra Street home, dons a costume and gets ready to welcome (or frighten) trick or treaters.
"I started when my mum Mum Rosie gave me some Halloween stuff... And then a lady called Annette gave me so much stuff and she was just so into Halloween and I was like, 'I wanna do it like her'," she said.
"The kids are into it too. Aria was a bit scared at the start but she's good now - all of these things in the living room, I guess it is a bit scary."
The Wingewarra Street home is one of many which will be included on a list of Halloween stops shared by the Halloween Houses Dubbo Facebook page. The page is updated annually with a list of households getting into the Halloween spirit, making it easier for families wanting to trick-or-treat to know where to go.
This year visitors to Ms Gillett's home can look forward to a walk-through haunted house set up under gazebos on the driveway.
She says it takes "weeks" to get everything set up.
"We've been collecting decorations for about six years... it's just inflatables and all these mannequins which move and we're gonna put up some gazebos and make a little walk-through haunted house," she said.
"People are pulling up out the front just to look at it... The kids are so excited and when they come, it's just so exciting. We give out lollies and it and I think it's just something for kids to do."
The Halloween Houses Dubbo page will be updated with a list of trick-or-treating addresses on Monday, October 30, the night before Halloween.
Many local businesses are also getting into the Halloween spirit with a number of affordable, family-friendly events. Here are just a few of the fun things planned around town to celebrate the spooky season.
Put on your best Halloween costume and head to the Taronga Western Plains Zoo for an afternoon filled with spooky fun including a Monster Mash disco, a trick-or-treat trail and an opportunity to meet some of the zoo's reptiles.
Gates for Boo at the Zoo will open at 4:00pm on Tuesday, October 31 with scheduled festivities starting at 4:45pm with a ring-tailed lemur keeper talk. Then, at 5:30pm, there will be a kids Halloween costume parade with prizes for the best dressed followed by a spider monkey keeper talk at 6:00pm.
Between 4:00pm and 7:00pm attendees can enjoy the trick-or-treat trail, the Monster Mash Disco, an extinct and endangered animal graveyard and the reptile exhibit.
Tickets for the event cost $10 for the kids and are free for non-participating parents and guardians. The ticket includes a Halloween trick or treat bag, entry to the trick-or-treat trail trail and an ice block.
Cafe Wild will also be serving some Halloween-themed treats and drinks for the occasion.
From 9:00am to 5:00pm on Tuesday, October 31, Priceline Pharmacy on Macquarie Street will be offering kids Halloween makeup looks for just a gold coin donation to the Sisterhood Foundation.
The foundation raises funds for charities that support Australian women and their families.
The Western Star Hotel on Erskine Street will be throwing a Halloween party for kids on Sunday, October 29 from 4:00pm to 6:00pm.
There will be prizes for the most scary costumes, face painting, cupcake decorating, halloween goodie bags and dinner provided. Tickets for the event cost $10 and can be booked at the bistro.
Reading Cinemas in Dubbo are celebrating the release of brand-new Aussie animation Scary Girl with a Halloween themed Family Day.
Starring Tim Minchin, Deborah Mailman and Sam Neill, Scary Girl follows a young girl called Arkie as overcomes her fears and journeys to a magical city after her world is threatened with a loss of sunlight.
From 9:30am on Sunday, October 29, the cinema will have free Halloween activities for the kids before the movie begins at 10:00am. Tickets can be booked online at the Reading Cinemas website.
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