St. Louis —-The St. Louis Aquarium at Union Station is being invaded by Pirates and a spooky patch of magnificently carved pumpkins this fall.

“Pirates & Pumpkins,” a new family adventure, is open September 15 through October 31, 2023 with special activities on Fridays and Saturdays in October. 

The Aquarium will be decorated with pirate-themed scenes, including a ghost ship with smoking, booming cannons. On the exciting treasure hunt inside the Aquarium, guests will take a self-guided tour through a highly themed wonderland of treasure caves and grottos.

Social media fans will love the Instagram-worthy photo opportunities throughout the transformed Aquarium during their fall journey.

Patches of realistically carved and lighted pumpkins representing the Aquarium’s sea life will greet visitors as they explore the attraction. One of the highlights is a pumpkin shark scene complete with a boat for family pictures and scary selfies.

Guests make their way through the marine habitats and hands-on animal adventures at the Aquarium, learning amazing animal facts and enjoying pun-filled pirate jokes. 

Treasure seekers will explore elaborate pirate scenes and kids can fire the pirate ship’s fearsome cannons.At the end of the quest, only the bravest adventurers can sit at the Pirate King’s Throne for a triumphant picture.

“Pirates & Pumpkins” is included with admission to the Aquarium. Tickets are available online at

Weekends in October Pirates & Pumpkins will turn into a trick or treat festival on Fridays and Saturdays, October 6-7, 13-14, 20-21 and 27-28 from 5 to 8 p.m. (last admission at 7 pm.).

Kids get a free plush pumpkin and a complimentary trick-or-treat bag at the entrance where they learn how to choose their own pirate name. Six trick-or-treat stations will be open.and staffed by the Aquarium’s pirates. Guests will learn to talk like a pirate with Tommy, the Aquarium’s animated Otter mascot, and will meet a real pirate parrot at the Ambassador stage from 6 to 6:30 p.m. Other spooky seasonal animals — including snakes, newts, tarantulas and creepy crawlies — will be highlighted during the evenings. Pirate Story Time in the KidZone offers family friendly terrible tales every 30 minutes.

Costumed scuba divers will carve pumpkins inside the Aquarium’s Shark Canyon at 1:15 p.m. on Saturdays and Sundays in October.

The St. Louis Aquarium at Union Station is open daily at 9 a.m. Advance tickets are available at Follow the Aquarium on social media @aquariumstl. The Aquarium is located at 201 S. 18th St., St. Louis, MO 63103.  

About St. Louis Union Station

In addition to the Aquarium, St. Louis Union Station — built in 1894 and once the largest and busiest train terminal in the nation — offers additional attractions, restaurants and the St. Louis Union Station Hotel.

Visitors can ride the 200-foot-tall St. Louis Wheel for views high over the St. Louis skyline. The Wheel rolls along with the St. Louis Carousel every day from 10 a.m. to 10 p.m. Next to the Carousel, St. Louis Mini Golf presents 18 holes of fun under the historic train shed. The Mirror Maze takes guests on a funhouse romp back to the days of the 1904 St. Louis World’s Fair, and Selfie Express is a new train-themed interactive photo illusion experience. The St. Louis Ropes Course is an adventure with obstacles and zip lines poised high over th Aquarium lobby. Combination tickets for the attractions are available at

Make it a spooky family escape by staying at the St. Louis Union Station Hotel, a Curio Collection by Hilton. Room reservations and packages are available at:

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By Richie

I'm a 40-year-old father blessed with two wonderful children: a 13-year-old daughter and a 10-year-old son. My life revolves around my beautiful wife, who is the cornerstone of our family. Without her unwavering support, none of what I do would be possible. By day, I serve as a network administrator for a local school district, ensuring smooth operations in the realm of technology. During the evenings, you'll often find me engrossed in various creative pursuits, from illustrating books to crafting websites or composing music. But above all, my priority is spending quality time with my kids. Parenthood has been a profound journey of growth and discovery for me, and now, armed with a keyboard instead of a pen, I'm eager to share my experiences and insights with others.

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