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Creep Out the Kids 

Wednesday, Sep 29 2010
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Those of us who don’t have offspring tend to forget that kids are fascinated by the grotesque. Giant bugs, things preserved in jars, strange smells, defecation – the little ones really get a kick out of things we grown-ups think of as too gross for comfort. Halloween is a perfect occasion, then, to dress up the tykes and take them to see some real scary stuff. The Exploratorium’s Creature Features – which encourages kids as well as adults to show up in costume – has a lineup that blows doors on the plastic spiders and cardboard skeletons you’ll find at Walgreens. Speaking of spiders, the San Francisco Bay Area Tarantula Society (did you even know there was such a thing?) will have some of its eight-legged wonders on hand, and I bet they won’t all be behind glass. The Association of periOperative Registered Nurses will have blood-sucking leeches. (Hope there’s a demo on that one.) You can move from the macabre to the cultural with local artist Irma Ortiz, who’ll help visitors make and decorate sugar skulls. If the adults get bored with such kid stuff, there’s the Graveyard of Dead Science Ideas to see what kind of scary ideas didn't make it.
Sun., Oct. 31, noon, 2010

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Keith Bowers

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