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Disneyland is all a-glow during Halloween. PHOTO COURTESY OF DISNEYLAND
by Michael Berick
October offers a cornucopia of events to help families celebrate that always-fun, sometimes-frightening holiday, Halloween. Treat yourself and your family to Halloween adventures around Southern California.
Amusement Park Thrills
Kids 12 and younger can trick-or-trick every October weekend at Legoland’s Brick-Or-Treat (10 a.m.-9 p.m. Sat., 10 a.m.-5 p.m. Sun.; 1 Legoland Dr., Carlsbad; legoland.com). Knott’s Berry Farm invites children to Snoopy’s Costume Party (various times; 8039 Beach Blvd., Buena Park; knotts.com) on October weekends, when kids ages 3-11 can show off their Halloween outfit in a costume contest and parade, navigate “The Great Pumpkin Hay Bale Maze” and search through the “Spooky Ookie Scavanger Hunt.” Disneyland (1313 S. Disneyland Dr., Anaheim; Disneyland.disney.go.com) offers up holiday-themed additions to places like Space Mountain and the Haunted Mansion, and Mickey’s Halloween Party (for an additional fee) offers unique experiences to Disneyland visitors on 11 nights Sept. 28 through Oct. 31.
Dias De Los Muertos
On Olvera Street (El Pueblo Historical Monument, 125 Paseo de la Plaza, L.A.; calleolvera.com), you can take part in the free pre-Columbian procession and blessing called Novenario at 7 p.m. nightly Oct. 25-Nov. 2, with the Fiesta de Muertos happening Oct. 29-30. At the nearby LA Plaza de Cultura y Artes (501 N. Main St., L.A.; lapc.org), you can view the Casa de Calaveras, George Newnam’s life-sized skeleton figures for free from noon-7 p.m. Oct. 27. It’s the lucky 13th edition of the Hollywood Forever’s Dia de Los Muertos (6000 Santa Monica Blvd., L.A.; ladayofthedead.com) from noon to midnight Oct. 27 (free for ages 7 and younger until 4 p.m., $10 per person otherwise). It has something for everybody, from theatrical and musical performances including the band Ozomatli to community altars and a traditional processional, plus family activities including a LACMA-organized children’s art area.
Griffith Park Ghouls
The Autry Museum (4700 Western Heritage Way, L.A.; theautry.org) hosts its Vivan Los Muertos from 3-8 p.m. Oct. 27. This Day of the Dead celebration features Mexican and Aztec folkloric dances, storytelling, a Mercado and elaborate altars. The Halloween Ghost Train Rides (7-10 p.m. through Oct. 31, 5101 Zoo Dr., L.A., $10) aren’t as scary as they sound. The L.A. Live Steamers make this rail ride not too wild for youngsters. During Boo At the L.A. Zoo (5333 Zoo Dr., L.A.; lazoo.org) animals and humans share in Halloween fun from 10 a.m.-4 p.m. Oct. 27-28. Animals get treats (but no tricks), while human visitors can trick-or-treat in Winnick Children’s Zoo.
Both the Cabrillo Marine Aquarium (3720 Stephen M. White Dr., San Pedro; cabrillomarineaquarium.org) and the Aquarium of the Pacific (100 Aquarium Way, Long Beach; aquariumofthepacific.org) will be hosting their annual Halloween parties. Cabrillo’s Sea Scare (6-9 p.m. Oct. 27) this year boasts a new haunted maze, “The Ship of Screams,” along with expanded versions of the Voodoo Village and the Party Zone. When the Aquarium of the Pacific transforms into the Scarium of the Pacific (9 a.m.-5 p.m. Oct. 20-21), you can take part in a costume contest and a coloring contest, enjoy magic shows and underwater pumpkin carving and other “spooktacular” fun.
The Grier Musser Museum (403 S. Bonnie Brae St., L.A.; griermussermuseum.org) hosts its annual Halloween Haunted House Tour at 1 and 2:30 p.m. Oct. 28, showcasing its collection of Halloween memorabilia plus its Wizard of Oz artifacts. More old-fashioned creepiness can be found at Heritage Square (3800 Homer St., L.A.; 323-225-2700) during its Halloween and Mourning Tours, noon-4 p.m. Oct. 27-28, with the Oct. 28 program featuring more family-friendly activities (period games, a pumpkin patch, crafts and stories).
Where else but the Greek Theatre (2700 N. Vermont Ave., L.A.; ticketmaster.com) would Eek! At The Greek exist? Arthur B. Rubinstein leads the Symphony In The Glen in a program of Halloween-themed music at 7 p.m. Oct. 28. June Chandler’s Fairy Tale Theatre, meanwhile, presents the world premiere of the interactive musical The Halloween Show at 11 a.m. Saturdays through Nov. 3 at the Sierra Madre Playhouse (87 W. Sierra Madre Blvd., Sierra Madre; sierramadreplayhouse.org), where the audience helps Halloween characters overcome being scared.
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