Halloween

Halloween is upon us and with the coming of this day, comes another reminder that buyers should beware.

What does state law have to do with the house you buy in Florida? A lot, and in ways you might not have imagined. If you're not buying a newly-constructed house, there's a history to be considered. Cooley Law School Assistant Professor Remalia DuBose says laws vary from state to state about what sellers must disclose to potential buyers---like, if the house is haunted.

It was almost too much for Rick Swenson to take.

First, his friend smashed a car by dropping a 1,400-pound pumpkin on it at a charity event — then he had to stand by as that same friend smashed Swenson's personal record by growing another 1,400-pound monster. Swenson, a competitive pumpkin grower from Minnesota, couldn't just let his friend one-up him like this.

Florida Department of Corrections’ probation officers will be working with law enforcement across the state Monday to ensure sex offenders are not interacting with kids this Halloween.

Nancy Klingener / WLRN

The annual Zombie Bike Ride took over Key West Sunday afternoon, with thousands of the undead riding the island's Atlantic shore at sunset.  

The ride started with a few hundred people in 2009; it has grown each year and now thousands take part.

Andy Newman / Florida Keys News Service

Update: 4:05 p.m. Sept. 2

The Key West City Commission deadlocked 3-3 at its Tuesday evening meeting on the question of whether to recommend that local trick-or-treaters wait till Nov. 1. So local parents and kids are free to go ahead with their traditional walks for candy, even as the partying carries on downtown.

 

Trick-or-treating or partying? It's a tough choice for Key West. 

That's especially true this year, when the city's biggest annual party, Fantasy Fest, lands on Halloween. 

1930
State Archives of Florida, Florida Memory, http://floridamemory.com/items/show/24482

The Biltmore Hotel in Coral Gables wasn't always a hotel. 

It was built in 1926 by a young developer named George Merrick, who's known as the founder of Coral Gables. 

The hotel became a place to host glamorous fashion shows, galas, golf tournaments and water shows in what was then the largest pool in the world.

At a loud party on the 13th floor of the hotel, a gangster named Thomas "Fatty" Walsh was shot and killed by another gangster. That murder yielded a lot of ghost rumors over the years.

tanakawho / Flickr Creative Commons

As you shop around for the perfect Halloween costume, beware.  

Don’t reach for those decorative contact lenses that will transform your boring pupils into green feline eyes or spiral hypnotizers.

The Food and Drug Administration warns these cosmetic lenses sold in Halloween supply stores, flea markets and mall kiosks are illegal and can lead to blindness.

Contact lenses are medical devices that can only be distributed by licensed eye care professionals, according to a federal law passed in 2005.

Mark Hedden / WLRN

An estimated 8,000 zombies invaded Key West the night of Oct. 20, pedaling on bicycles across the Cow Key Bridge and muttering about brains. But the takeover was not unexpected and had a police escort.