This weekend's Shark Celebration at the natural history museum is an event with teeth -- specifically, a set of choppers that could easily accommodate an upright human. The program is an interactive companion to the museum's Sea Monsters: Savage Ancient Seas exhibit. "This is the hands-on part," says the museum's Beth Gatchell. "And I have a really neat fossil to share with people."
That'd be the remains of Cladoselache, a shark that inhabited local waters 370 million years ago -- back when everything local was water. Also known as Cleveland's shale shark, the Cladoselache was preserved in organically abundant black mud, which later became shale.
Shark Celebration also features a craft-making session that results in a shark mobile. "We've got a variety of modern sharks [to choose from]," Gatchell says. It takes place from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Friday and Saturday and 1 to 4 p.m. Sunday at the Cleveland Museum of Natural History (1 Wade Oval Drive). The event is free with museum admission, which ranges from $4 (for kids) to $7; call 216-231-4600. -- Allen Miller
Akron Symphony hosts a Halloween program.
Matthew Kraemer is scaring up classics for Sunday's Halloween Magic, a concert tailored to costumed youngsters 4 to 12 years old. First come the musical games and the "instrumental petting zoo," in which participants can drag a bow across a violin and blow into a trombone. While the orchestra performs Halloween music, audience members can dance in their seats. "The more the kids are allowed to move around, the easier it is to keep their attention," Kraemer says. Another attention-grabber will be the costumed musicians. But Kraemer's keeping his costume under wraps. "I can't think of another conductor who'll be interred on the podium, as I will," he says. Halloween Magic starts at 2 p.m. at E.J. Thomas Hall, 198 Hill Street in Akron. Tickets are $7 to $11; call 330-972-7570. -- Cris Glaser
Walk with wizards through the woods of Shaker Lakes.
Ever wondered why a gutted pumpkin is called a jack-o'-lantern? The answer lies in the Enchanted Forest. The hike-and-learn program features lantern-toting wizards serving as guides through the trails of the Nature Center at Shaker Lakes, where they share seasonal info (learn how harvest festivals are celebrated around the world). "It's a festive time of year to explore the forest at night," says naturalist Stephanie Thomas, "and to learn a little bit about the customs that have been practiced around the time of Halloween." It happens from 6 to 8:30 p.m. Friday and Saturday at the Nature Center at Shaker Lakes (2600 South Park Boulevard). Tickets are $5 and $6; call 216-321-5935 for reservations. -- Diane Sofranec
The Big Apple
The Cleveland Play House opens its Children's Theatre lineup with Follow the Seasons: The Legend of Johnny Appleseed. The tale of the fruit-packing wanderer is told through the eyes of a young boy who befriends the folk hero; lessons are soon learned. It plays at 1 and 3 p.m. Saturday and Sunday through November 16 at Studio One Theatre (8500 Euclid Avenue). Tickets are $15; call 216-795-7000. -- Michael Gallucci