Outside of Morrill Hall in Lincoln, Nebraska
Over the Halloween weekend, Morrill Hall celebrated with new events, both in-person and online.

Over Halloween weekend, Morrill Hall hosted a new Halloween event called, “Morill Hall-oween”, a four-day event for children to learn more about science through a Halloween theme.

Due to COVID-19, this year organizers at Morrill Hall had to get creative to cater to their annual Halloween celebration. Morrill Hall moved some events online and other in-person events became restricted for capacity.

To keep guests safe, Morrill Hall used new methods to limit capacities while keeping numbers down.

“We have the reduced capacities with our timed-ticketing,” said Caroline Clements, public relations and membership coordinator at Morrill Hall.

Timed ticketing is when a person or group of people buy a ticket for a specific block of time in which they can come in at any point during their block of time.

“It’s basically taking what our Halloween events have been in the past and reimagining them for Covid safety,” Clements said.

At past events, Morrill Hall hosted an evening of in-person events for all ages to come, dress up, and learn about science through various booths and stations throughout the museum. Because of restrictions, organizers came up with more socially distant events this year.

“Everything right now is a bit of an experiment,” said Emily Brown, education supervisor at Morrill Hall. “The fun part of that is you get to be creative and try new things.”

This year’s in-person events included trick or treating where children received a goodie bag filled with candy from the front desk and a pumpkin scavenger hunt throughout the exhibits.

Scavenger hunt Hall NE wildlife 300x225 - Morrill Hall reimagines its annual Halloween celebration for 2020
One of the events was a scavenger hunt for children to try and find as many pumpkins throughout the exhibits. Photo courtesy of Emily Brown.

For those who did not wish to attend the in-person events, the museum included two online events. Throughout the four days, Morrill Hall held a virtual costume contest where participants could take a picture of themselves at Morrill Hall and upload it to Facebook or Twitter while tagging the museum in their post. The winner received a one-year membership to Morrill Hall and a bag full of candy and gifts.

The museum also held the “Spooky Skeleton Science” virtual program on Halloween where scientists showcased various animal skeletons including some of the more strange skeletons. Museum workers also helped children create skeleton crafts over zoom.

“They’re basically calling it a spooky virtual skeletal adventure,” Clements said. “They’re going to explore some of the different skeletons that ‘haunt’ our galleries.”

Casey Christensen is a senior Journalism and Sociology double-major at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln.