Halloween events in Los Angeles for spooky fun

Halloween events in Los Angeles for spooky fun

Get in the Halloween spirit with these festive events in L.A., from family-friendly festivals to ghostly plays and tours

Not all Halloween events are hell-bent on scaring you straight. Sure, we've stocked our list of festive favorites with plenty of frights, but you'll also find bar crawls, Halloween attractions and family-friendly festivals. Watch theaters stage spooky shows or explore the best things to do this fall—thrill-seekers should check out the best haunted houses and real-life haunted places, too. Whatever you're looking for, there's no shortage of worthwhile Halloween events in Los Angeles.

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Know of any more essential Halloween events? Let us know at events.la@timeout.com.

 

Halloween events & attractions

Things to do, Talks and lectures

Halloween & Mourning Tours

Montecito Heights

Oct 27 2018

History buffs, make your way to the Heritage Square Museum this Halloween. On the first day of their annual event, learn all about death and mourning etiquette during the Victorian era, including how even the intricate details on clothing played a role in showing the loss of a loved one. You'll also get the scoop on the Spiritualism movement, and can have your fortune told, if you dare. Then, take place in a funeral held inside one of the museum's historic homes. For family-friendly fun, children can play period games, make 19th-century harvest crafts and listen to (only slightly) spooky ghost stories.

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Lucha Vavoom: Circo de Vampiros

Downtown

Oct 24 2018—Oct 25 2018

If you haven't experienced the epicly overstimulating combination of burlesque dancing, Mexican luchadore wresting, comedy and acrobatics, the annual Halloween extravaganza is a great place to start. Head to the Mayan to witness the out-of-body-experience of Lucha VaVoom, which will take on a vampire theme this October. See good vs. evil played out in a sinful circus featuring Cavanario, Flamita, David "Infinito" Arquette and more. For this Halloween spectacular, expect high octane car performers, live music and plenty of fangs.

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Things to do, Festivals

West Hollywood Halloween Costume Carnaval

Oct 31 2018

This is the largest Halloween street party in the world, and there's really no better place to be on October 31st. Sure, the crowd is huge (like, a half million people huge) and a bit belligerent, but the amazing display of costumes and general merry-making spirit deem it at least a worthy stop, if not your main destination for the evening. There will be dancing, drinking, and many mid-parade costume contests. Even if you don't plan on entering one, it's best to still come dressed to the nines—no one likes a party pooper in jeans and a t-shirt. 

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Things to do

Drama After Dark: A Night of the Macabre with Poe and Gorey

Until Aug 27 2018

The actors of the Guild of St. George present an evening of chilling drama, enacting some of the most haunting tales of Edgar Allen Poe and Edward Gorey, two masters of the macabre. Expect to see "The Pit and the Pendulum," "The Tell Tale Heart" (one of our favorites), and more. Arrive early for free cookies and hot cider, dress warmly and be prepared to walk as the vignettes take place across the sprawling Huntington Library grounds. Tickets go on sale end of August.

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Theater, Interactive

Wicked Lit

Altadena

Oct 04 2018—Nov 10 2018

Spend a night in an Altadena cemetery as you're led across the grounds for two spooky theatrical productions. Wicked Lit stages classic horror stories and invites a limited number of patrons to experience the immersive performances each night. This year's stories include The Chimes: A Goblin Story and the word premiere of Teig O'Kane and the Corpse.

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Things to do, Festivals

Long Beach Zombie Fest

Long Beach

Oct 19 2018—Oct 21 2018

Join the horde at this annual Long Beach outbreak, where would-be-zombies descend upon Rainbow Lagoon Park for three days of scares, makeup workshops and costume contests. Each evening kicks off with a zombie walk through Shoreline Village.

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Things to do, Walks and tours

Horror Made Here: A Festival of Frights

Burbank

Oct 05 2018—Oct 29 2018

Hop on the Warner Bros. Studio Tour this October for a special horror-themed edition. You'll embark on a special nighttime visit to sets and stages where horros like The Exorcist and Gremlins were filmed, plus a visit to the Stage 48: Script to Screen experience to see props and costumes from classic horror films like Sweeney Toddand Beetlejuice. This year, the tour even includes an encore of the wildly popular It-inspired house that popped up in Hollywood.

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Things to do, Walks and tours

Paramount After Dark Tour: Tales From the Other Side

Until Aug 27 2018

Take a two-and-a-half-hour guided tour of the Paramount Studios, as well as the neighboring Hollywood Forever Cemetery, during this after-hours experience. The tour digs up the dirt on Hollywood's dearly departed and comes with a personalized souvenir photo and remembrance rose, as well as complimentary champagne and candy and popcorn hosted in an eerie location.

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Music, Music festivals

Escape: Psycho Circus

San Bernardino

Oct 26 2018—Oct 27 2018

The San Bernardino rave scene injects itself with a bit of Halloween flair at this annual music fest. Insomniac Events—the group behind EDC and the Wonderland series—is setting up multiple stages at the NOS Events Center; past headliners include Tiësto, Kaskade, Four Tet and more. Explore the grounds to find mazes alongside ominous artwork and freak show performers.

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Things to do

Los Angeles Comic Con

Downtown

Oct 26 2018—Oct 28 2018

There's no shortage of pop culture conventions, but not many can rival the annual Los Angeles Comic Con. Last year alone, the convention drew 90,000 comic fans to Downtown L.A. for one epic three-day expo. This year, expect comic book panels, anime screenings and celebrity appearances. Make sure to come in costume for the geek couture fashion show and cosplay contest.

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Things to do, Festivals

Halloween Horror Nights

Universal City

Sep 14 2018—Nov 03 2018

Confront familiar foes at Universal Studios’ annual Halloween festivities, where big-budget scares meet iconic horror movie characters. Navigate multiple mazes, scare zones and the “Terror Tram”—this year’s themed attractions include Stranger Things and The First Purge. The scariest part? The intense level of corporate tie-ins. We kid, we kid; the familiar properties make for some pretty fun walk-throughs. See more of the best haunted houses in L.A.

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Things to do

Knott’s Scary Farm

Buena Park

Sep 20 2018—Oct 31 2018

Encounter free-roaming monsters, terrifying mazes—spanning themes like Paranormal Inc., Special Ops: Infected and Shadow Lands—and more haunting attractions at the OC theme park.

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Things to do, Festivals

Dark Harbor

Long Beach

Sep 27 2018—Nov 02 2018

The only thing better than a haunted attraction is a haunted attraction on a giant boat. You'll find all the usual horrors here—fog, mazes and countless monsters. What sets Dark Harbor apart is its use of its surroundings; the dark, cramped confines of the Queen Mary are already pretty spooky even without monsters—just be prepared to climb a lot of skinny staircases. There's also an R.I.P. Lounge (see what they did there?) if you're looking for a first-class experience (fewer monsters, more booze). Tip: Arrive early for the $20 "Happy Haunting Hour" from 6pm to 7pm, where you can calm your nerves with a spiked potion at "Voodoo Brew."

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Movies, Horror

Halloween Organ & Film: Nosferatu

Downtown

Oct 31 2018

Before vampires dressed in designer clothes and looked like Robert Pattinson, silent film director F.W. Murnau created the classic German expressionist retelling of every kid's favorite campfire tale. Settle into the Walt Disney Concert Hall for a screening and live score of the film from organist Clark Wilson on Halloween night.

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Family-friendly Halloween activities

Things to do, Festivals

Fall Festival

Fairfax District

Oct 13 2018—Oct 14 2018

Halloween time can be a bit scary for kids—we've all been there—so for a less frightening affair, head to the Farmers Market for their children-friendly Fall Festival: carnival games and a petting zoo are all mainstays at this annual harvest fest. Come in costume and catch a musical performance, explore the always delicious treats at the market or test your appetite with a pie-eating contest.

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Things to do

Mickey’s Halloween Party at Disneyland Park

Anaheim

Sep 19 2018—Oct 31 2018

Hundreds of lively jack-o-lanterns begin to dot Main Street and a pair of park staples get a festive treatment: Space Mountain Ghost Galaxy and the Tim Burtonized Haunted Mansion Holiday. But only during Mickey’s Halloween Party can you trick-or-treat around the park and watch the Halloween Screams fireworks show and the Frightfully Fun Parade. Before Mickey's Halloween Party festivities begin, you can hop between Disneyland park and California Adventure for up to three hours for added fun. 

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Things to do, Festivals

Día de los Muertos at Hollywood Forever

Hollywood

Oct 27 2018—Oct 28 2018

Hollywood Forever Cemetery claims to host the largest Day of the Dead celebration in California, and we wouldn't doubt it: The cemetery grounds are covered with art exhibitions, dance rituals, musical performances, children's arts and crafts projects and food vendors (and crowds) aplenty. You'll see altars to the dead created by community artists, and can either watch or participate in the calaca (skeleton) costume contest. This year's theme, Coatlicue "Mother of Gods,” honors the Aztec goddess and mother of the moon, sun and stars. 

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Kids, Festivals

Annual Halloween Party for Downtown L.A. Kids

Downtown

Oct 31 2018

While Downtown may not be the easiest place to go when it comes to trick-or-treating, the locals know how to throw a party. The Annual Halloween Party for Downtown L.A. Kids at Grand Hope Park continues to thrive as parents celebrate the spookiest night of the year with bounce houses, puppet shows and faux trick-or-treat-doors. 

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Things to do, Festivals

Calabasas Pumpkin Festival

Calabasas

Oct 20 2018—Oct 21 2018

Yes, there’s more to pumpkins than Halloween jack-o’-lanterns: pumpkin bowling, pumpkin beer, pumpkin bread and, of course, pumpkin pie. You might've guessed by now, but there'll be no shortage of pumpkin-related activities at the annual Calabasas event. Festive fact: Calabasas' name comes from the Spanish word "calabaza," which means gourd or pumpkin.

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Kids, Festivals

Pumpkin Festival

Pasadena

Oct 27 2018—Oct 28 2018

Explore a petting zoo, pony rides, bounce castles, carnival games and seasonal crafts at this Pasadena pumpkin patch and costume parade. All proceeds benefit the Kidspace Children’s Museum’s Kidspace For All programs, which works to provide free and discounted admission for those in undeserved communities.

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Things to do, Performances

Slightly Spooky Stories

La Cañada

Oct 20 2018—Oct 28 2018

Bring out your Halloween costumes and make your way to the Descanso Gardens for a festive, slightly spooky production from Ensemble Shakespeare Theatre. Set in the open-air at Under the Oaks Theater, the show will get you in the All Hallows' Eve spirit with a series of stories for all ages to enjoy. After the performance, spend the afternoon strolling through the enchanting gardens—a welcomed photo opporunity for parents wanting a pic of their youngsters in costume. 

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Looking for more Halloween fun?

Things to do

The best haunted houses in Los Angeles

What's Halloween without a few good scares? The best haunted houses in Los Angeles run the gamut from big-budget amusement park productions to more homegrown horrors.

 

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