Los Angeles Halloween Events Worth Seeing

Halloween is around the corner and it’s a given that spending it in Los Angeles is going to be a blast. Whether you’re trying to have some scary adult fun or take your kids out for a good time, there’s plenty of events to choose from. Discover Los Angeles put together a guide of the hottest attractions across the city–here’s some of the best things you can do on Halloween:

 

Family Friendly Events

  1. Boo at the L.A. Zoo (happening all month long) – This little event is taking place at the Los Angeles Zoo & Botanical Gardens, and it’s both spooky and family safe. There’s adventures every day with special events on the weekends, which include things like musical puppet shows, crafts, pumpkin carving and roaming costumed characters. Wearing costumes is encouraged, so make sure you and the family get into the spirit. Trick or treating will happen Oct. 28-29, so be on the lookout for that. There will be treat stations all over, with candy courtesy of 99 Cents Only Stores. The best part about this event is that it is free to attend with zoo admission.  
  2. 11th Annual DTLA Halloween Festival (Grand Hope Park at FIDM, Oct. 31, 2018)- Happening at the Grand Hope Park located near the Fashion Institute of Design & Merchandising, this family-friendly event takes place from 5pm to 8pm. There will be a ton of kids activities from face painters, bounce houses, arts and crafts tables, puppet shows, trick-or-treat doors and much more. There will be pirates, superheroes and fairies running afoot for your kids to meet. While optional for adults, costumes are requested for children. Make sure you bring something to put all of your candy in. Just a rule of thumb–no pets allowed. Tickets are $10 at the door, including all activities and snacks.

 

Adult Events

  1. Halloween Horror Nights at Universal Studios Hollywood (happening till Nov. 3, 2018) – Hands down one of the of the best events of the season, Universal Studios Halloween Horror Nights is something that you definitely don’t want to miss. This year will feature Netflix’s Stranger Things on top of some other spectacular mazes like Poltergeist, Halloween 4, The First Purge, AMC’s The Walking Dead and more. And if you’re about entertainment, then make sure you check out an exclusive Jabbawockeez performance. Tickets are on sale online now. There’s general admission, day/night, Frequent Fear Passes for multiple nights, and the R.I.P. tour for groups of 14.
  2. Los Angeles Haunted Hayride at the Old Zoo (through Oct. 31, 2018) – “Old Zoo” and “B Rock” in Griffith Park are well known for being highly paranormal areas, even being called the most active paranormal site in the entire state. This place is the site of the Los Angeles Haunted Hayride. This adult-only event is not for the faint of heart, with vicious clowns lurking in each corner, ready to jump out. All from the safety of the wagon, you’ll get to see an all-star crew put in some serious work. But at some point, you’ll have to get out of the wagon for the corn maze. When that happens, you’re on your own. Other features include the House of Shadows dark maze, “Trick Or Treat” interactive neighborhood and an Old World haunted village, Purgatory. As for ticket options, there’s hayride only, general admission, VIP (front-of-line access), group rates, and a private wagon for up to 30 guests.
  3. Dark Harbor – Queen Mary (through Nov. 2, 2018) – This event is definitely not meant for those who get scared easily. With over 200 heinous monsters let loose across six terrifying mazes, this is one of the most intense L.A. attractions of the season. There’s plenty of paths to brave, along with secret rooms, nightly live entertainment, haunted bars and exciting rides–starting at just $20.
  4. The W Rooftop Halloween Masquerade (Oct. 31, 2018) – VIP Nightlife presents the fourth annual Masquerade Halloween Party, hosted at the W Hollywood Loft & Wet Deck. With two areas of music, three areas to mingle, amazing views and a list of DJ’s, this night is surely to be one for the books. If you’re looking for something exciting to do on Halloween night, this party is it. While costumes aren’t required, they are strongly encouraged.

This list is just some of the things that you can do for Halloween. A more extensive list can be found at Discover Los Angeles or Eventbrite.

2018 Local Día de los Muertos Festivals to Check Out

Marigolds adorning an altar with the favorite things of those who have passed is a signature note of Día de los Muertos, also known as The Day of the Dead. While the marigolds are tradition, the things that line the altars vary–from a bottle of liquor to a stuffed animal, the Orange County Register wrote in a 2017 article about the Mexican holiday. The Day of the Dead is when those still on Earth celebrate the departed with festivals and lively celebrations, according to National Geographic. While one would think the holiday would be associated with mourning, it’s actually the opposite. It’s a way to recognize death as a natural experience, National Geographic writes; it’s a special day of all the activities that those who have departed would enjoy if they were here. Beginning before the arrival of the Spaniard conquerors, the Mexican festival was merged into All Souls Day and All Saints Day, according to National Geographic. A day held dear to many families, it’s best spent with those that you love and care for. No matter where you’re at, take the time to celebrate Día de los Muertos.

Celebrated between Oct. 31 and Nov. 2, there’s plenty of time to hit some festivals. If you’re looking for a Día de los Muertos gathering to attend in Orange County, look no further. There’s plenty all over Southern California to attend, but there’s one in Fullerton located off Maiden and Wilshire that should be exciting if it’s close to you. Forth’right Productions Studio is putting together their “final event” also known as the 7th annual Día de los Muertos. Happening Nov. 3, 2018, from 5:00 pm to 9:30 pm at Max Bloom’s Cafe, entertainment is set to be provided by Freshsoul Alliance. Also performing is Icpaxochitl from de Poetras Cultura. Food will be provided by Forth’right Productions Studio. Vendors will include Freshsoul Apparel. HIP KATZ Car Club will also be in attendance. The following activities will be available for families:

  • Free coloring book
  • Free candy
  • Free snacks
  • Free entertainment/music/poetry
  • Free toy Hot Rod/custom cars from the HIP KATZ Car Club, for the first 12 children

Another festival to check out just over in Los Angeles County is the sixth annual Downey Día de los Muertos Art Festival, happening Sunday, Oct. 28, 2018 from 11am to 8pm at the Downey Theatre. Featuring a slew of festival artists (both local and regional) and activities such as Casa Calaveras, a pop-up exhibit, will be available for all festival goers. This is another good one–make sure you go check it out.

Casa Calaveras

Beginning in 1999, Casa Calaveras is a pop-up exhibit featured during the Downey Día de los Muertos Art festival. The exhibit has traveled all across Southern California, featured in places such as the Museum of Latin American Art, LA Plaza de Cultura y Artes, Old Town San Diego’s Fiesta de Reyes and 10 years at Santa Ana’s Bowers Museum of Cultural Art. The exhibit celebrates the marriage of José & Gloria, the couple from the hereafter, according to Yelp. The bride and groom go on a multicultural adventure traveling the world as they meet a host of happy skeletons from nations all over. A heart-filled tale of two lovebirds, it’s all expressed through life-sized happy skeleton figures. It’s a family fun event that’s perfect for introducing your kids to the holiday. For more information about the exhibit, check out their Yelp page here.

Other Features

Some of the groups that are set to perform include Resurrección Mexican Folk, Grupo Folklorico Mexcaltitán, Tradición Dance Company, with others. Full schedules can be found here. There are three stages during the festival, so the amount of entertainment is going to be plentiful. There won’t be a single dull moment, so plan for an all day trip.

Don’t forget that there’s free admission and free parking as well. For more information about the festival, including how to get there, photos, event schedule (coming soon) and a festival map, visit their website. Don’t sleep on these events. If you can, try to attend both and help support local communities coming together.

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