ZooBoo, a 26-year tradition offering a family-friendly, nonscary environment to celebrate Halloween, returns to Como Zoo from 4:40 p.m. to 7:30 p.m. the weekends of October 19-20 and 25-27. The zoo's grounds will be transformed into a story­book paradise where flowers can talk, pirates offer hugs and the tigers can dance.

Guests follow a trick-or-treat path, stopping at about 10 themed stations while over 200 costumed characters entertain and interact with all the little ghosts and goblins along the way. Other activities include pumpkin bowling and crafts.

A free park-and-ride shuttle service from the State Fair lot on Como Avenue will be available. Advance tickets are $6 at Como's Garden Safari Gifts or online at www.comozoo conservatory.org or www.comofriends.org, or at the gate for $7. Children under 2 are free. For more information call 651-487-8226. Proceeds benefit the zoo and Marjorie McNeely Conservatory.

Jim Anderson

Twitter: @StribJAnderson