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The Spooky Lagoons: A Halloween Adaptation

As with most folks, The Northwest Passage’s Halloween was a little unusual this year, but it was unusual in a refreshing way.

Under normal circumstances, we’d be wrapping up our Greek Islands kayaking season, and almost certainly would not spend Halloween morning paddling the Skokie Lagoons. But that’s just what we did, and, man, was it a great time!

We hatched the idea weeks ago and hoped that the weather would cooperate--it was snowing at this time last year after all. We were in luck though. The forecast looked breezy but called for acceptably comfortable temperatures (mid-40s warming to low 50s by noon) and sunny skies.

Despite the clear skies and the beautiful fall color changes, a 40-degree forecast would typically dissuade us from taking folks kayaking. But these times are atypical. For all the hardship and heartache of pandemic life, we’ve found that the adversity has inspired us to make a point of being open to adaptation whenever possible.

Trick-or-treating was out for many families. Same for Halloween parties. So when the opportunity to adapt typical holiday celebrations arose, we couldn’t pass it up! Borrowing from

Easter traditions, we decided to hide a bunch of Jack Be Little pumpkins along the shoreline for costumed kiddos to find as they kayaked around the lagoons. After two hours of physically distant paddling in the cool morning sunshine, all participants went home with a pumpkin, a goodie bag full of Halloween treats, and a cup of hot chocolate.

It was a greatly enjoyable morning that was made possible by adapting responsibly to adversity -- a practice that any longtime camper is familiar with. All wore masks when close to one another and spread comfortably apart out on the water.

A big thank you to all who joined. Adapt and, as our old friend Bob D. likes to say, Paddle On!


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