Boca Behind the Scenes Ep. 29 – Talk Spooky to Me: Boca Boo Days

Hi everyone and welcome to Boca Behind the
Scenes a get to know you podcast where we get to chat with city staff about programs initiatives and events that we have going on right here in our community . And on today’s
podcast we’re going to be talking about probably one of the most anticipated month long spooky
celebrations that we have Boca Boo Days and with me today I have a couple of veterans
of the podcast. I have Stacee Lanz the special events coordinator with Sugar Sand Park thank
you so much for being here again. My pleasure. And we have Carter Bogush the marketing coordinator
for Sugar Sand Park thank you so much for being here. Absolutely. And welcome to the
new studio I know you guys have been here on a couple of times in different places that
we’ve had the podcast so thank you so much for being so flexible all the time and being
on it with us. Of course. Just to get started why don’t you introduce yourselves and kind
of your roles within the City. Okay good afternoon my name is Stacee Lanz I’m the special events
coordinator at Sugar Sand Park Community Center and I’ve been with the City for about sixteen
years and I over see all the different special events holiday programs and different types
of monthly programs we have at the park at the community center. Hi my name is Carter
Bogush I’ve been with the City three and a half years right now I again I’m the marketing
coordinator at Sugar Sand Park Community Center so that’s press releases social media any
anything sponsorships anything to go with marketing that’s what I do. And what’s your
favorite part of your job? Well for me I think it’s probably seeing the families and the
smiles and the kids and of course now we have our Halloween coming up so scaring children
of course. Much along those lines the same thing just the outreach getting out in front
of people seeing them seeing how happy they are with what we do in the City. Very cool
well thank you for everything that you guys do. So tell us a little bit about the Recreation
Department in regards to Boo Days like what what is Boo Days who’s involved and because
I know there’s different community centers and the libraries so talk talk spooky to me.
Alright I’ll do it. Boo Days has been around maybe five years or so. It is a collection
of everything that the city’s Recreation Services Department does over the month of October.
It’s pretty much all family friendly fun educational entertainment it’s edu-tainment so that would
be Sugar Sand Park Patch Reef Boca Raton Community Center aquatics golf Gumbo Limbo everyone
in Rec. Services basically has something neat they do for kids and for families. Very cool. Anything you want to add? Uh yeah it’s a great recreation-wide collaboration. Not really collaboration but it is it highlights all that Rec. Services does for the month of October. And then so each facility or organization I shouldn’t say organization but each there are different components of it, different events. So what are those types of events and does it start this week? It starts this weekend. It starts with Barkfest this weekend. The City’s Special Events Department is putting on Bark Fest at Mizner Bark dog park which is right off of Banyan Trail. They are doing that from 10am – 2pm. They’re doing dog adoptions all sorts of they’re doing animal performances, prizes, they’ve got markets, they’ve got a dog costume contest which will be fantastic so humans and dogs can come out they have a chance to win prizes at the events. It starts this weekend October 5 so that is the first event. It runs through the 27th. I want to believe is Monster Mash. The 27th is Monster Mash at the new aquatics center will be the last so all sorts of great events all the way through. And how long has this been
going on for Boca Boo Days? About five years so roughly five or six years ago you know
all of the heads of the you know different facilities came together and said hey let’s
you know let’s really try to market everything that the Rec. Services does so that when people
come into the facility they can get one you know brochure that you know kind of highlights
everything that we do so we help to promote each other’s of different events and programs
that are going on. Yeah and you know that way it’s it’s yet again it feels more collaborative
it feels more you know connected. And what is Sugar Sand Park doing specifically for
Boca Boo Days. Sure I’ll talk about that. We are doing our Shriek Week event which is
our signature Halloween event. This will be our sixteenth year doing it. Oh wow okay. Well
technically fifteen we got we got hurricane “Wilma-d” out so it’s been fifteen years but
yeah so we do two weekend events and it’s five nights it’s about a dozen different types
of attractions and our signature haunted house that we’ve been working on since probably
April of last year. Wow. Our theme this year is a ghouls gold pirates wreckage so we have
a a pirate themed haunted house that we’ve been building. In addition we have a trick
or treat trail a trackless train ride alien lab which is a second haunted walk through
that we do crass glitter tattoos black light games shows including giant robot show magic
shows and animal encounters so we really you know roll out the red carpet for our guests.
For this one we have a lot of different attractions each weekend for this event and new this year
we have a what’s called a mystery market place where we’re inviting vendors who have
seasonal goods Halloween themed family goods or services to come on out and also apply to be a vendor for the
event each night of the event. Very cool and talking about this haunted house because I’ve seen promotions
out there for it. I am not I can’t do haunted houses oh you’re not the only one our kids
as well as our adults get scared and that is why we have a light night so. Oh okay.
So the Thursday of Shriek Week is our light night and we turn up the lights a little bit
we take down the sound and we have our actors you know kind of pull back so for those of
you scaredy cats out there you still have an opportunity to have a good time at our
haunted house. Good good see yeah I don’t have to unexpectedly be scared yeah no we
you know there’s no judgment here yeah elemnt of suprise not not my thing. But so you do
have actors you said you’ve been preparing for this since April that’s that’s extensive
so what kind of goes into preparing for this whole event. Well for our haunted house we
have we prepare by well we build it so our staff manages the entire build. And is it
in Sugar Sand Park’s Community Center? It is we have one room it’s called the Maple
Room it’s a twenty five hundred square foot room and we we transform it a with all kinds
of sets lights special effects and actors and it becomes our haunted house so if you
go into it today I think you know last month or so we had we had meetings you won’t recognize
it basically it’s unrecognizable but we do transform it we do auditions for actors so
you know today we have our orientation for all of our volunteers a lot of volunteers
it’s a huge community event. We have about a hundred volunteers that we use for this
over the five nights and yeah it you know it takes a lot to do but but all of the programs
and all the events that we do certainly do take some time and effort from all of our
staff and we just want to make it a great month with all of our different programs that
we have here. And for all the events that are taking place are there certain age requirements
for any? Is it open to anybody and everybody? Absolutely. Different ones are tailored
to different age groups to different demographics for example Patch Reef is doing Trick and
Treat Em kids get together it’s toddler basically ages two to five. They’ll do that on October
25. Both of the libraries are doing something October 18 that’s open to all ages. They’re
doing a great magic show and Corny Sue’s Scarecrow show depending on that’s at the Spanish River.
The magic show is at Downtown Library. Let’s see here Gumbo Limbo is actually doing something neat. They’re
doing their Full Moon Spook-anoe its ages eight and up so adults and kids will take
their canoes out on the intracoastal and then yeah it’s going to be really fun and spooky.
They’re going to do that and then there’s also the adult Halloween Round Robin at the
Patch Reef Tennis Center if you want to talk strictly adults so they’ll do that. They can
dress in costumes they’ll have a continental breakfast they’ll play they’ll win prizes
so something for any and everyone basically is what we try to do. Yeah and there is and
I know too there’s like a Pumpkin Patch Festival at MPA? Is that part of Boo Days as well?
So it’s not specifically part of Boo Days but it is in Mizner Park yes it is. It’s at
Mizner Park this month. How do people register? I know you guys have a website. Do people
have to register buy tickets? A little of both so the website as you mentioned is
and through that website you can link to all the other websites each facility is going
to have its own registration for their programs. For Shriek Week for the haunted house we sell
tickets you could do that over the phone online or in person and I think for most registrations
they’re mostly online and in person would be how you register or purchase tickets for
these events I believe. And do they usually sell out these events or you know is it something
people should get on quick? I would always encourage people to buy in advance. I would
say probably they do mostly sell out I know for Shriek Week we sell out. Most of these
registrations I would guess with the popularity of Halloween and yeah the City and everything
that we do I would encourage people to go ahead and you know get their advanced tickets.
Yeah. Space is limited for a few of them absolutely. Okay great and what should people expect especially
for Shriek Week? I know you kind of gave us a little insight about what’s going on with
the haunted house but are there things that people need to know before they go? You know
what should they expect from that event as well? Sure for Shriek Week and especially
for the haunted house it is for ages seven to twelve light night we say five to twelve
and so we definitely would encourage that age group for the haunted house however with
all of the other entertainment as well as again for some of the different other Boca
Boo Days programs it’s for all ages you know it runs the gamut from we have babies dressed
up like Cinderella in their Cinderella carriages which is I mean people go all out yeah all
out telling you it is it is insane. We do get a roughly for us we get about three thousand
people a night and it is it is does you know it’s definitely entertaining so I would say
as with Shriek Week and all the programs entertainment fun maybe some education like you said. Definitely.
And so last question I’m trying to incorporate some fun questions now on these podcasts so
favorite Halloween candy go. Anything chocolate of course I mean. That’s vague. Do you have
to be specific wow I mean anything chocolate. Alright peanut butter cups alright I said
peanut butter cups. Oh yeah Reeses, Reeses cups. Can’t turn those down. Yeah absolutely.
Well thank you guys so much for being on the show good luck with all the Boca Boo Day’s
festivities. For more information you can go to the website or on Facebook
social media and thank you for putting on such an awesome event every year. Thank you
Anne Marie it’s a pleasure. Absolutely. And thanks everybody for tuning in to Boca Behind
the Scenes.

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