Find ‘Creeptacular' Critter Fun at the Wildlife Learning Center

Tarantulas, owls, and other awesome animals lend this pre-Halloween celebration plenty of not-so-eerie pizzazz.

Wildlife Learning Center

What to Know

  • Sylmar
  • Oct. 29 and 30, 2021, 5:30 to 8:30 p.m. (purchase your timed entry ticket in advance; each session runs 1.5 hours)
  • $13; children 2 and under admitted free

Choosing a familiar? Or having a familiar choose you?

It can be a rather complex process, one imagines.

For if you're seeking a wise animal to be at your side, through thick, thin, and all of life's many dramas, you're going to want a conscientious critter, the sort of beastie that boasts plenty of brains and a whole lot of heart.

Perhaps humans' enduring fascination with the concept of the familiar, the enchanted animal companion that's starred in countless storybooks, is one reason animals make such a memorable showing as we approach Halloween.

And such a memorable showing is set to roar, bark, and hoot at the Wildlife Learning Center in Sylmar on the evenings of Friday, Oct. 29 and Saturday, Oct. 30.

For the destination, which cares for a host of fabulous furry, feathery, spiny, and scaly residents, will be presenting a super-cool "Creeptacular," all to keep with the creepy spirit of the season.

This Creeptacular isn't all that prone to tingling spines, however; it's an alfresco celebration, with treats and animal sightings, and a chilling chance to visit the center's "reimagined reptile cave."

You're also welcome to wear a costume, if you'd like to try out your gecko get-up or ocelot outfit before Halloween night officially arrives. (If you don't have an animal-themed costume, no worries, but you'll surely see a few furry looks during the festivities.)

It's a spirited way to connect with the natural world as you head into a holiday weekend that takes many of its tropes and symbols from the wilder side of life.

Of course, we're fairly sure that while the animals of the Wildlife Learning Center have the potential to serve as human familiars, they've been called to other important duties, like educating the public about the needs of their various species and serious conservation matters.

So if you're thinking of interviewing any of the critters you encounter for a possible role in your personal sidekick, consider that these cuties, from Zeus the owl to Sid the Sloth, have found other vocations.

Or perhaps Zeus, Sid, and the center's other animals are all retired familiars? There's something fanciful to ponder as Halloween, and its many nature-centered legends, stir on the wind.

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