You know the fate of Halloween procrastinators, don't you? It looks a little something like this: bags of that terrible orange and black peanut butter wax-like taffy to hand out to the kids, nothing left to buy at Halloween City except deeply discounted Monica Lewinsky and/or "sexy maritime lawyer" costumes, and little hope of securing a ticket to any of the really fun Halloween happenings in South Florida.
To help you plan ahead -- and to keep you from being all dressed up with no place to ghoul -- here's a look at some of the upcoming food and drink related Halloween events in Broward and Palm Beach Counties. (We'll be back next week with additional events as they become available):
Halloween Events in Fort Lauderdale/Broward County
The Signature Grand Ghoul -- Local celebs and pro athletes flock to this big ticket event hosted by O.J. McDuffie and Davone Bess. This year's theme is "Night of the Living Dead." The party is 7 to 11:30 p.m. Monday, Oct. 24 at The Signature Grand. Tickets are $150 to $175 per person.
Halloween Parties at Seminole Hard Rock Hotel & Casino -- Multiple parties are on tap at this entertainment complex, with dance parties, costume contests, and music throughout next weekend. There are five events each on Friday, Oct. 28 and Saturday, Oct. 29, plus an event on Monday, Oct. 31. Cover charges range from free to $30 and up. For more details on Halloween 2011 events at Seminole Casino, call 954-585-5112.
Zombie A-Go-Go -- Mai-Kai Restaurant and Polynesian Show, the historic tiki destination in Fort Lauderdale, will host a costume themed dance party at 9 p.m. this Saturday with happy hour specials from 10 p.m. to midnight.
Hulaween Party -- The retro Halloween fun continues at Mai-Kai Restaurant and Polynesian Show with the third annual Hulaween Party from 5 p.m. to close Friday, Oct. 28 at the Fort Lauderdale landmark. Happy hour from 5 to 7 p.m. and live music by Slip and the Spinouts.
Costume Party at SoLita -- Come in costume to the party at SoLita on Las Olas with cash and prizes awarded for best costume. The shindig is 9 p.m. to close Friday, Oct. 28.
Halloween Events in Palm Beach County
Second Annual Delray Zombie Crawl -- It's a pub crawl, but at the leisurely pace set by the undead. Get a $20 ticket and get limited drinks at four bars and two parties, complete with a zombie prom and horror movies. The "Night of the Drinking Dead Part 2" is 8 p.m. to 2 a.m. Saturday, Oct. 29 in various locations throughout Delray Beach.
Costume Contests in Lake Worth -- A handful of Lake Worth restaurants will host Halloween costume contests over the holiday weekend. The venue and judging times include: 8 p.m. Friday, Oct. 28 at Brogue's Down Under & Aussie Boomerang Bar; 9 p.m. Oct. 28 at Fiorentina's; 9:30 p.m. Oct. 28 at the Hookah House; 10 p.m. Oct. 28 at Igot's Martiki Bar and Havana Hideout; 11 p.m. at The Cottage and midnight at South Shore Tavern.
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Pumpkin cooking contest in Lake Worth -- Part of Lake Worth's family friendly Halloween extravaganza, this culinary showdown features judging by local chefs, with prizes awarded in three categories. The throwdown commences at 1:30 p.m. Saturday, Oct. 29 at the Chamber of Commerce, 501 Lake Avenue.
Halloween Events Throughout South Florida
Free "Scary Face" Pancakes at IHOP -- Participating IHOP restaurants throughout South Florida will offer a free "Scary Face" pancake to kids 12 years and younger from 7 a.m. to 10 p.m. Friday, Oct. 28. The freebie pancake comes with sugary accoutrements like mini Oreo cookies, whipped cream, and a strawberry nose. You can sign up for a scary face "wake up call" if you have any fears that you might oversleep and miss the event.