'Frankenstein' radio play aims to scare and entertain

The Karen Hastings Players is hoping to scare the socks off its audience this month. The theater company is staging a radio adaptation of Mary Shelley's 19th-century novel "Frankenstein" on Saturday nights at the Dale Easton Apple Valley Theatre at Lake Perry.

"It's not the traditional Hollywood Boris Karloff story," Karen Hastings said. "It has very scary moments and very poignant moments."

The adaptation, by Phil Grecian, follows Shelley's classical horror tale: Dr. Victor Frankenstein wants to create a super man who is resistant to disease and the other ills of humanity. His partner, Henry Clerval, believes Frankenstein is going too far with his power to create but gives in to his friend's ambition. The monster wants Frankenstein to love him, and when the doctor is unable to do that, the monster vows to shed the blood of everyone close to Frankenstein, including his girlfriend, Elizabeth.

Hastings said the story raises ethical questions about the creation of life and conversely the destruction of life.

"We are creating a story, but if we stick to the novel as a guide, then those questions come up," she said.

The radio show is a simulation with microphones, piano, organ stings and visible sound effects, such as the zapping sound of an electrical charge produced by the two metal prongs of a Jacob's Ladder.

Apple Valley Theatre is in a restored barn, and Hastings said audience members should dress warmly and bring blankets. This weekend, hot spiced cider and hot chocolate will be available.

"Frankenstein" is not the only Halloween-related event being planned in the Lawrence area. Others include:

� Today: Crown Center Pumpkin Patch, 10 a.m.-4 p.m., Crown Center, 2450 Grand Blvd., Kansas City, Mo. Fee: None.

� Today: "A T.rex Halloween," 11 a.m.-4 p.m., Union Station, Main Street and Pershing Road, Kansas City, Mo. Fee: $12.50 for adults and $9 for children ages 4-17, includes admission to the "T.rex Named Sue" exhibition.

� Today through Oct. 31: Free State Farm, 1431 N. 1900 Road, from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. Horse-drawn hay rack wagon to the patch, Scarecrow Hallow, which includes farm animals for petting, pony rides ($2 each), train rides ($2 each), straw mountain, concessions. Haunted hay rack rides from 7 p.m. to 9 p.m. Friday-Saturday ($8), which includes a meal to cook over a bonfire. 841-1265. Free State also will have a Trick or Treat Day at the patch, from 11 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Oct. 27, includes kid's theater, a parade of costumes, boo story time and photo opportunities with the Headless Horseman.

� Today through Oct. 31: Pome on the Range, 2050 Idaho Road, Williamsburg, from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Monday-Saturday and noon to 5 p.m. Sunday. Pick-you-own pumpkins; horse-drawn wagon rides to patch on weekends. (785) 746-5492.

� Today through Oct. 31: Schaake's Pumpkin Patch, 1791 N. 1500 Road, from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. Pick-your-own pumpkins, straw slide, tractor-trailer rides. 843-2459.

� Today through Oct. 31: Strong's Farm, 1919 N. 1500 Road, from sunup to sundown, with hours extended to 10 p.m. weekends. Pick-your-own pumpkins, haunted maze, tractor train rides, petting zoo. (785) 542-2620.

� Thursday-Oct. 27: "Cats and Bats," by Seem-to-Be Players, 10 a.m. Thursday-Friday and 10:30 a.m. Oct. 27, Lawrence Arts Center, 200 W. Ninth St. Fee: $8 for adults and $6 for children.

� Friday-Oct. 28: "The Pumpkin King," an original play, and "Coventown," a Halloween farce, 8 p.m. Friday and Oct. 27 and 2 p.m. Oct. 28, Carnegie Cultural Center, 105 E. Third St., Ottawa. Fee: $5 for adults and $3 for children 12 and younger.

� Friday-Nov. 25: "Los Dias de Los Muertos (The Days of the Dead)," Museum of Anthropology, Kansas University. Fee: None.

� Oct. 27: "Dark at the Top of the Hill," 7 p.m.-9:15 p.m., Natural History Museum, Kansas Union and Museum of Anthropology, KU. Fee: $2.50.

� Oct. 27: Spook-n-Splash, sponsored by Lawrence Parks and Recreation, 5 p.m.-8:30 p.m., Lawrence Indoor Aquatic Center, 4706 Overland Drive. Fee: $3 for children ages 3-12 and $3.75 for children 13 and older.

� Oct. 27-28: "Boo at the Zoo," 9 a.m.-4 p.m., Kansas City Zoo, Kansas City, Mo. Fee: Free with zoo admission, $6 for adults and $3 for ages 3-11.

� Oct. 27-28: "The Tale of the Two-Tailed Cat," by Seem-to-Be Players, 1:30 p.m., Lawrence Arts Center, 200 W. Ninth St. Fee: $8 for adults and $6 for children.

� Oct. 31: Halloween Trick-or-Treat, 5 p.m.-6:30 p.m., stores in downtown Lawrence. Fee: None.

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