Instead of trick-or-treating this Halloween, put on that award-winning costume and head to the Monster Mash.
The Monster Mash is southern Utah’s Halloween dance party presented by The Heart of Dixie, which, as owner Jared Keddington said, is dedicated to “promoting positive social experiences for the youth of our community.”
The Monster Mash will be held Oct. 26 and 27 in Washington City at the Dance Factory, located at 25 N. 300 West. The doors will creak open at 7 p.m. and lock shut at 1 a.m. each night.
Friday’s event is for 18 and older, and Saturday’s event is for 13 and older.
Keddington said the age requirement to get into Saturday’s Monster Mash was originally 16 but has now been lowered to 13.
“We’re allowing the age difference just in case somebody gets stuck watching their little brother or kid sister, and they want to come,” he said. “We don’t want somebody to get left out for that.”
Admission to the Monster Mash is $10, and a portion of all proceeds from the event will be donated to The Spirit of Children, a charity created by Spirit Halloween, which provides funding to hospitals at Halloween and throughout the year.
Keddington said he’s bringing a handful of the best out-of-state disc jockeys to the event, as well as local artists, to create a good mix of music for everyone.
If those feet just won’t boogey one step more, food and merchandise vendors will be outside to provide a break from dancing.
“Instead of it just being a dance, you can make a full-on date night out of it,” Keddington said. “I want it to be more than just, ‘Hey, let’s go dance.’ You’ve got to have something to do in between.”
Danielle Latsis, a sophomore general education major from St. George, said she likes the idea of the event being more than just a dance because the town lacks entertainment options.
Not only is the Monster Mash a dance and a party, but it’s also a chance for students to win cash prizes by showing up dressed to impress in unbeatable costumes.
Cody Cox, a junior integrated studies major from West Jordan, said the contest creates an incentive to go to the event, especially for college students who don’t have a lot of money.
In order to qualify for the costume contest, at least one item of a contestant’s costume must be purchased from the Spirit Halloween store.
“It doesn’t have to be expensive; it can be a dollar item,” Keddington said.
The grand prize each night is $500 for best-overall costume, but cash prizes will also be given to the winners of the 30 other categories.
Keddington said: “I spent a day going over every category that I could possibly think of because people have their own personalities, and they want to get into a costume that’s going to mesh with their personality.”
But he also realizes it isn’t easy creating a prize-winning costume.
“A lot of time and effort goes into making a really good costume, and we want to make it something that people can create memories with,” he said. “So we’re going to have a professional film crew and photographer on hand all night.”
All photos will be posted on Facebook after the event.