Pop-up Halloween shops have arisen in vacant storefronts across the south suburbs to help us celebrate the season of the witch in the style to which we have become accustomed.
Spirit Halloween has the most shops in the south suburbs this year as the improving economy has claimed many of the formerly empty storefronts used by these pop-up shops for Halloweens past.
Spirit, which carries an assortment of costumes, masks, fake blood and animatronic ghosts, witches and vampires, is already open at 5849 W. 95th St. in Oak Lawn, 14726 S. Cicero Ave. in Mid-Oak Plaza in Midlothian, 15846 S. LaGrange Road in Lakeview Plaza in Orland Park, 19933 S. LaGrange Road in Hickory Creek Marketplace in Frankfort and 12700 Illinois Route 59 in Kensington Center in Plainfield. Hours for all of the stores is 11 a.m. to 8 p.m. Monday through Thursday, 10 a.m. to 9 p.m. Friday and Saturday and 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. on Sunday.
The retailer also has a smaller Gallery store that only carries costumes and accessories open at 16521 W. 159th St. in Lockport. An additional Gallery store is coming soon to 410 Nelson Road in Nelson Plaza in New Lenox.
Halloween City has only one Southland location this year at 1 Orland Park Place at Orland Park Place mall in Orland Park. Hours are noon to 8 p.m. Monday through Thursday, 11 a.m. to 8 p.m. Saturday and 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. Sunday.
A newcomer this year is a store called Yankee Bill's Costume Superstore at 15818 S. Harlem Ave. in the Home Depot Center in Orland Park. Hours there are 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. Monday through Saturday and 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. Sunday.
Zombie Safari opens in Tinley Park
Zombies are back on the attack in Tinley Park at Odyssey Fun Farm at 19111 S. Oak Park Ave., across the street from Odyssey Fun World arcade.
The Zombie Safari Hayride runs from 7 p.m. to midnight on Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays (no Sundays in September) after the much more kid friendly Fun Farm shuts down at 6 p.m.
For $20, you are driven into a 15-acre maze and then attacked by zombies. You fight back with paintball guns mounted on the sides of the hayride truck. You start out with 100 paintballs but can buy more ammo if you are particularly trigger happy.
"We have a lot of cool stuff going on at night this year," said Clint Paraday, general manager of the arcade and Fun Farm, which offered the Zombie Safari for the first time last Halloween.
The safari lasts for about 15 minutes, Paraday said.
The Fun Farm has been offered for three years now and features a 15-acre pumpkin patch, 15-acre maze, corn cannon, zip line and a corn crib that holds upward of 15 tons of corn.
The Fun Farm will be open daily from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. from Sept. 28 to Oct. 27. General admission is $11 with additional costs for the zip line and pony rides.
For information, see their website at odysseyfunfarm.com.
Pompei changes name again
Pompei Little Italy, which was scheduled to reopen last week at the Riviera Country Club at 8801 W. 143rd St. in Orland Park as Davino's, with a slightly tweaked menu and new hours, is now called Ralph's Italian Eatery and Bar after its co-owner Ralph Davino.
A message on the restaurant's Facebook page attributed the change to a snag with the name Davino's.
The restaurant had closed to erect new signage and do some minor interior remodeling.
"Pompei is going in a little different direction here in Orland Park," supervisor Kelly Voris said last week. "(Ralph's) will be open from 4 to 10 p.m. and be closed Monday and Tuesday.
"We are expanding the menu a little from the Pompei menu," she said.
Voris said the Pompei on Taylor Street in Chicago was not undergoing any change and a new Pompei Little Italy would be opening soon in Westmont.