Trails to Terror

2008 Halloween Guide

It's scream time, Houston, and whether you party funny or sexy, know that with a Friday-night Halloween, it's going to be huge. The clubs around town are getting together to give you something special to do, and plenty of beer to wash it down with. Trend watchers say many of you will even go political as Barack Obama look-alikes hit the streets in droves. And John McCain?...

Haunted Houses

The Haunted Trails

11500 Antoine,

713-618-DEAD,

www.thehauntedtrails.com

Billing itself as the scariest outdoor haunt in Houston located in a dark patch of wicked woods, this eight-year-old event warns you not to come alone. It also suggests that you bring toilet paper, and that's not as a last-minute costume. It's open Wednesdays through Sundays through November 1. Coupons are available at its Web site, and at Party City and Hooters. It's open from 8-11:30 p.m. $13.

Nightmare on the Bayou

1515 Studemont St.,

713-868-3344 ext. 4,

www.nightmareonthebayou.com

Nightmare on the Bayou, located next to Houston's oldest graveyard, has revved things up with four haunted attractions this year. A $25 regular ticket gets you inside all four haunted houses. A $35 VIP ticket gets you to the front of the line with free parking. And to make things even easier, you can buy your tickets online. And it doesn't matter what the weather is like, this Nightmare is open and ongoing. Doors open at 7 p.m.

Phobia

18777 Highway 290; second location,

I-45 South at Mall of the Mainland,

713-526-DEAD, www.darke.com

Come early and leave scared if you want to see all of Phobia's creepy attractions, which include The Dark Institute, Simon Fowler Woods, ClaustroPhobia and more... Open 8 p.m.-midnight on Fridays and Saturdays, 8-10 p.m. Sundays, but in the final Halloween week, both locations open an hour earlier, at 7 p.m. Tickets are $15 and $24 with discounts available.

ScreamWorld

2225 N. Sam Houston Pkwy., 713-914-1313, www.screamworld.com

This high-tech haunted house features movie-set quality scares with five attractions at its one location. Selected as one of America's Best Haunts in 2008 and a Best of Houston® winner in its category, ScreamWorld operates out of a 12,000-square-foot building and promises you'll only have to wait in line once — unlike competitors that put you in multiple lines. Highlights include the Edge of Darkness haunted house, Movie Monsters in 3D, Our Maze of Manias and the Tobias Strange Family Cemetery. Hours are 7:30-10 p.m. weekdays,7 p.m. to 12:30 a.m. Fridays and Saturdays, 7:30-10 p.m. Sundays and on Halloween, 7:30 p.m. to 1 a.m. Ticket prices range from $18 to $35 for VIP.

The Alamo Drafthouse

531 South Mason Road, 281-492-6900,

www.drafthouse.com

Mason Park

October 31

The Drafthouse is throwing a Halloween party in the Biergarten and inviting everyone to come, full costume, for a night of face-painting, psychic readings, and mesmerizing magic tricks from 8 to10 p.m. And, if you stick it out to the end, you can see the 1 ½ Mexicans' presentation of The Lost Boys at 10. The price for this commodity is the standard $6.50, an it's easily worth it to enjoy the comedic stylings of the group as they lambast the vampire classic The Lost Boys for everyone's enjoyment. The best costumes will be rewarded with prizes and Alamo swag, along with the usual Alamo atmosphere.

October 30 - November 8, 2008

Lawndale Art Center

4912 Main, 713-528-5858,

www.lawndaleartcenter.org/

Lawndale Art Center is presenting its 21st Annual Día de los Muertos programs, a celebration of the art, music and practices of Mexico. Lawndale invites Texas artists to create their own interpretation of the traditional tin devotional painting practice in Mexico known as the retablo in this exhibition. Every year the works created for this exhibition range from the very traditional to very contemporary and abstract. All proceeds from the silent auction help to fund Lawndale's annual programs. More than 250 retablos from local and nationally known artists will be on display October 20-November 8 and are available for auction at the gala.

The Retablo Exhibition is October 20-November 8, the Gala/Retablo Silent Auction is October 23, 6-9 p.m., the Musical Ofrenda is October 28, 5:30-7:30 p.m., the Sugar Skull Workshop is October 30, 4-7 p.m. and Family Day Fiesta is November 1, noon to 4 p.m.

Through October

Downtown Aquarium

410 Bagby, 713-223-FISH,

www.downtownaquarium.com

Join Sharkey and friends for the Downtown Aquarium Halloween Kids Fest, where kids can enjoy pumpkin painting, photo opportunities with animals and the Octavius moonwalk. Also included are exhibit feedings and demonstrations, a chance to meet Shaggy and Scooby in the Mystery Machine and the promise of hauntingly good entertainment.

The Health Museum

1515 Hermann Dr., 713-521-1515,

www.thehealthmuseum.org

The John P. McGovern Museum of Medical Science, a.k.a. the Health Museum, will feature Haunted House 4D, a cinematic version of the traditional haunted house. Complete with rain, thunderstorm effects, and even thick, pearly fog, this daily dive into a world of terror will make the hairs on the back of your neck stand at attention. Recommended for children ages 7 and up. General admission is $8 for adults and $6 for children and senior citizens, but children two and under, as well as museum members, are admitted for free. Admittance to Haunted House 4D requires another $4 per person.

Thursday, October 30

The Backroom at the Mink

3718 Main, 713-522-9985,

MySpace.com/SpeakerboxxThursdays

Speakerboxx and the Tipping Point present Spookyboxx at 10 p.m. in the Back Room. Entrance is free with no cover, restricted to those who are 21 or older. Costumes are encouraged at this pre-Halloween celebration.

BooTown

www.myspace.com/bootowntheatre

The darkly unique BooTown theater group, presenter of the popular Grown-Up Story Time series, is welcoming Halloween with a classic fairy tale — in its most twisted, gruesome form. Spaghetti Head, adapted from the Grimm Brothers' "Rapunzel," is sure to contain the macabre and delightfully morbid. The performance will last approximately one hour, and, while BooTown is nonprofit, the presenters suggest a donation of $5.

Audience interaction is encouraged.

Citizen Lounge

4606 Washington Ave.,

713-304-3265

In a partnership between JMG Magazine and HOT 95.7, the Citizen Lounge will be hosting the group's First Annual Halloween Bash for a night of cocktails, music and seduction. A costume contest will, of course, be held, with a first place prize of a weekend getaway to Hotel Contessa in San Antonio, a second place prize of a one year membership to 24 Hour Fitness, and a third place prize of Houston Dynamo playoff tickets. A DJ will be there for all musical needs from the party kick-off at 10 p.m. to its conclusion at 2 a.m.

West Alabama Ice House

1919 W. Alabama, 713-528-6874

The West Alabama Ice House is offering up more than 50 pumpkins for a pumpkin-carving contest. Carve your own, unique Halloween creation and stick around to see it again when it's lit up in a fantastic display to celebrate Halloween night.

Friday, October 31

Al's Sports Bar

16203 Westheimer, 281-493-9797,

Al's will be celebrating the night all spirits walk the earth with a traditional Halloween party, complete with a costume contest, drink specials and karaoke. They've introduced a true triple threat — a chance to dress funny, get drunk and sing in front of strangers.

Ashford Arms Pub

14605 Perthshire Rd, 281-497-5316,

www.ashfordpub.com

The Pub will be holding a Halloween party complete with costume contest. A cash prize of $100 goes to the winner, $65 to second place, $35 to third place, and an "Irish pat on the back" to fourth place. Judging will begin at 11 p.m. No cover.

Berryhill Baja Grill Galleria

1717 Post Oak Blvd., 713-871-8226,

www.berryhillbajagrill.com

This Berryhill location will be offering $3 Jack-O-Ritas all day and $1 Kazis and drink specials all night. There will be a costume contest at9:30 p.m. as well as live music and a DJ. The winner will receive $150 cash.

Berryhill Baja Grill Sugar Land

Sugar Creek Shopping Center,

13703 Southwest Fwy., 281-313-8226,

www.berryhillbajagrill.com

Berryhill will be offering Jack-O-Ritas all day for $3 each, with happy hour from 11 a.m. to 8 p.m. At 10:30 p.m. there will be a costume contest with the prize of a $50 Baja Grill gift card. There will also be a DJ for auditory entertainment.

Berryhill Baja Grill Woodlands

Market Street

9595 Six Pines Dr. #250, 281-298-8226,

www.berryhillbajagrill.com

This Berryhill location will be offering $3 Jack-O-Ritas all day and $1 Kazis and drink specials all night. There will be a costume contest at9:30 p.m. as well as live music and a DJ. The winner will receive $150 cash.

Caroline Wiess Law Building

1001 Bissonnet, 713-639-7531 for info, 713-639-7771 for tickets, www.mfah.org

MFAH will be showing the original 1935 Bride of Frankenstein at the Caroline Wiess Law Building this Halloween at 7:00. Directed by James Whale in a brilliant display, you won't want to miss this creepy classic. Still, if you do, there are two more showings on November 2 at 5:00 and 7:00 p.m. Adult tickets are $7, with a $1 discount for members and seniors.

Citizen Lounge

4606 Washington Ave., 713-304-3265

Halloween brings us the Citizen Lounge hosting a Lingerie Costume Ball with sounds by DJ Styles and the promise of gifts to the best dressed.

Club 2020

2020 Leeland (at St. Emanuel), 713-227-9667,

www.club2020houston.com

Club 2020 is gearing up for a Fright Night Costume Party. There will be cash prizes for the best costume, most original costume and sexiest costume at the midnight hour. Doors open at 9 p.m. It'll cost you $5 to get in if you arrive wearing a costume, $10 without.

Club 20 Grand

14700 Kuykendahl, 281-895-8711,

www.club20grand.com

Club 20 is having a Halloween Ball from 9 p.m. to 2 a.m. They'll be offering "freaky" drink specials until 11 p.m. and a costume contest, with a $50 prize for the best dressed of both genders. For the day leading up to the party, happy hour is at5:30 p.m., and no one will have to pay the $5 cover charge until 9 p.m. Also, attendees can look forward to free gas cards, giveaways and more as part of the party.

Coaches Sports Bar and Grill

17460 Northwest Fwy., 713-446-7773

Join in at this bar for great drink specials all through the night and a costume contest with cash prizes for the best female and male costumes. The judging begins at 11:30 p.m.

The Continental Club

3700 Main, 713-529-9899,

www.continentalclub.com/Houston

Halloween night at The Continental Club will bring a visit from the group Disco Expressions, for a10 p.m. to 2 a.m. celebration of Discoween. In the words of the Club, "Do a (spooky) little dance, make a little (haunted) love, get down tonight!" The cover charge is still on.

Dan Electro's Guitar Bar

1031 E. 24th St., 713-862-8707,

www.danelectrosguitarbar.com

Dan Electros Guitar Bar will have the Music News "Funk Band of the Year" winners, and the Fondue Monks have costume shows several times a year, so expect something special on this night. The theme is a mixture of funky, sexy and ghoulish. Prizes will be awarded for "Best Costume" and "Most Ghoulish." The opening band will be the Montrose favorite, Her Majesty's Sweatbox, so expect a night of "out of the box" revelry. The show starts at9 p.m. for $10.

Ernie's On Banks

1010 Banks,

713-526-4566

Ernie's is going to have its traditional Halloween party, complete with $100 in cash prizes for best costumes, and drink specials all around. They'll also open their new 2,100-plus-square-foot deck, featuring a built-in "bags" game.

Fitzgerald's

2706 White Oak, 713-862-3838

Halloween night will bring ten bands including Los Skarnales, not to mention the unavoidable costume contest and much more.

The Flat

1701 Commonwealth, 713-521-3528

Spend Halloween night at The Flat with Jibril. No cover charge.

Foozies Bar & Billiards

Inside the Kroger Shopping Center on the corner of Garth Rd. and Baker

281-837-8351, www.myspace.com/fooziesbar

Foozies will be holding a Halloween bash featuring two live bands. They plan to double the fun with two costume contests; one for Best Costume and one for Best Couples Costume, each with a $200 incentive. Cover charge is $10.

Frank-N-Stein's Bar & Grill

9907 Hwy. 6 South, Sugar Land,

281-568-5593;

233 S. Mason Rd., Katy, 281-578-5593

This restaurant is the perfect place for your Halloween party headquarters, featuring food, drink and shot specials all night long. Also available is the chance to embarrass yourself in front of all your friends when you volunteer for karaoke. And, of course, don't forget to come prepared for the traditional Halloween costume contest for a possible prize of $1,000. Come to either location for a fun-filled Halloween night.

The Houston Museum of Natural Science

One Hermann Circle Dr., 713-639-4629,

www.hmns.org

Go to the museum on Halloween night to find a party of massive proportions, better known as Spirits & Skeletons. Watch an IMAX adventure and get sucked into the fun. This night will feature the electrifying music of The Chromatics as well as another visit from Steve Wallach. Fight to win in the Most Triumphant Costume Contest, and prepare yourself for your future with the help of Fatima and her team of psychics. Also, don't miss eating all the creepy concoctions dreamed up by Bug Chef David Temple before settling in to watch Etoile Arabesque, a local belly-dancing troupe. Admission is $15 for nonmembers and $13 for members.

Houston's First Baptist Church

7401 Katy Fwy., 713-957-6710,

www.HoustonsFirst.org/recreation

A lively Halloween festival known as First Fest will include activities to suit all ages, including everything from a dunking booth, fire truck and mechanical bull to a petting zoo, pony rides and candy galore. Admission is only $5 per person for a complete evening of all-inclusive entertainment.

Hyatt Regency Hotel

1200 Louisiana, 713-654-1234,

www.hyatt.empiregx.com

The Hyatt Hotel is hosting Phantom at the Hyatt, the hotel's take on the traditional Halloween party. The costume contest will include prizes such as round trip tickets, a 42-inch plasma TV, gift cards, and $3,500 in cash for winners. The party will also feature a Salsa and Brazilian show as well as body painting and a great deal besides. Pre-sale tickets (online) are $15 and tickets at the door are $25. The party will go from 9 p.m. to 2 a.m.

Last Concert Cafe

1403 Nance St., 713-226-8563,

www.lastconcert.com

The Last Concert Cafe, a musical Mexican restaurant devoted to original music, not to mention drum circles and alternate lifestyles, will be hosting Havok On Halloween. The celebration will be one to remember, featuring such artists as Hit By A Bus, Muchos Backflips, Live Oak Decline, and Jessica Leza for live performances while you enjoy the usual Tex-Mex standbys. The prices stand at $12/18+ and $10/21+.

Leon's Lounge

1006 McGowan, 713-659-3052

Leon's invites you to spend Halloween in your favorite neighborhood bar, costume or no. Swing by for a night of relaxation.

Lucky's Pub

801 St. Emanuel at Rusk, 713-522-2010

www.luckyspub.com

It's the Sportsmonkey 12th Annual Pimp & Prostitute Ball, featuring live music from the Lost Boys as well as multiple DJ's spinning in the background throughout the night. The quintessential costume contest has been amped with a prize of $4000. Winning titles will include Pimp of the Year, Classiest Ho and Best Overall Costume. Those who wish to participate must sign up by 10 p.m. The party will last from 8 p.m. to 2 a.m. and will come with the benefits of $3 beer and $3 Skyy, Malibu and Tuaca brands. Tickets are $15 in advance (order online at www.sportsmonkey.com) and $20 at the door. Although the theme is Pimp and Ho, all kinds of costumes are allowed.

McGonigel's Mucky Duck

2425 Norfolk, 713-528-5999

McGonigel's Mucky Duck is presenting Clandestine for Halloween. The Celtic music group from Houston will wail away with bagpipes, guitar, fiddle, and drums (bodhrán and conga drums), certain to put you in a brooding Halloween mood. The festivities go from 7 to 9:30 and the tickets are $15.

The Men's Club

3303 Sage Rd., 713-629-7900,

www.mensclub.com or myspace.com/themens

clubofhouston

The Men's Club is offering patrons a choice with A Heaven & Hell Halloween. There's free admission to those who dress in heaven or hell attire. Best of all, there's $500 in prizes for best costume. But even if you don't win any prize money, you can console yourself with $1.50 cocktails and domestics until 10 p.m.

The Meridian

1503 Chartres, 713-225-1717

www.33and3rd.com

The Meridian is featuring Rabbit in the Moon, an original electronic band known for its 12 inch singles, remix work and exploration in live performance. R.I.T.M. is in its tenth year of attacking your senses and emotions. They've been called the Grateful Dead & Pink Floyd of electronic music. Doors open at 9 p.m. Advance tickets are $20, at the door $25 and VIP are $35. Tickets are available at www.ticketmaster.com

Messina Hof Winery & Resort

4545 Old Reliance Rd., 800-736-9463,

www.messinahof.com

A healthy alternative to the commonplace Halloween party, Messina Hof will be hosting a Halloween Murder Mystery Dinner called Disappearance of Death. The plot is: The Great Radinski, world-renowned magician, has been found dead along the Shore of Mystic Lake. Participants must try to figure out who brought him to his murderous fate while enjoying a Halloween feast paired with exceptional wine. The dinner starts at 6:30 p.m. and costs $69.95 plus tax and gratuity.

Mezzanine Lounge

2200 Southwest Fwy. #150, 713-528-MEZZ,

www.mezzaninelounge.com

Head over to the Mezzanine Lounge after dark for the Vampire Ball 2008. Come in costume for a "bloody" treat and the possibility for a $200 prize when the costume contest starts up. Upstairs music will be provided by DJ Robic, so arrive early for seats and don't worry about a cover charge. In celebration of this vampiric occasion, drinks will be sold at $3.50 all night long.

Monkey Bar

605 6th St., 281-334-7800, Kemah

While the Kemah Boardwalk recovers from Ike, Monkey Bar suffered minimal damage and is already open for business. Come out Halloween weekend for great drink specials, a costume contest, and general good fun.

Mugsy's

3200 Kirby, 713-526-5595

Mugsy's will be welcoming costumes, but don't get your hopes up for a costume contest. Mugsy's is creating a safe haven for those who want to sit out on this year's Halloween madness with the same great drinks and atmosphere it always provides.

Numbers Nightclub

300 Westheimer, 713-526-6551

Numbers will be celebrating a classic Halloween with a cash prize costume contest, Friday night drink specials, and reduced cover. As for entertainment, DJ Wes Wallace will be there to make it even better. Doors open at 9 p.m. And stick around for the next night, also at9 p.m., for Danseparc and a John Waters Halloween, as well as Shoe and Michael. The cover charge is $2 off for people who dress like a John Waters character.

PJ's Sports Bar

614 W. Gray, 713-520-1748

PJ's will be hosting its Halloween party in conjunction with its usual karaoke event that occurs every other Friday. Bring a costume along with your singing voice; they'll be awarding cash prizes to the best.

Santito's Bar & Grill

11520 Northwest Fwy., 713-682-3404

This bar's celebration promises to be a lively one, with a heady cultural mix of Halloween and El Día de los Muertos, the Mexican day of remembrance for the recently deceased. On the one hand, there will be a costume competition, live band performances in a wide variety of genres, and the prize of a bucket of beer to whoever answers the band members' questions. On the other, the bar will be sporting the Dia de los Muertos altar adorned with pictures of loved ones and their favorite foods and beverages, as well as a lucha libre (Mexican masked wrestling) theme for the bar. This restaurant plans on combining the best of both worlds, the height of which is none other than: free tequila.

The 2nd Annual Montrose Crawl

www.montrosecrawl.com

A new Houston tradition, this event calls for anyone and everyone of drinking age to join in for a night of pub-crawling down Westheimer in the Montrose. Participants enjoy such benefits as drink specials in the finest bars Montrose can offer, as well as an opportunity to compete in a costume contest, the Grand Prize Winner of which will win a brewery party for himself and a group of his closest 99 friends featuring all-you-can-drink St. Arnold's beer. Along the way, lesser prizes will be awarded for other superior costumes, along with other Halloween activities at such favorites as Poison Girl, Boondocks, Etro Lounge, Catbirds, and the final stop, Slick Willie's Pool Hall, where the Grand Prize will be awarded. Entrance in the Crawl is free, and no cover charges or minimum drink fees will be required at the designated stops. A portion of all drink sales will be donated to the Houston Women's Center. To take part, be at Brasil at 6:30, and don't forget your costume.

Sonoma Retail Wine Bar and Boutique

2720 Richmond, 713-526-WINE,

www.sonomahouston.com

If you're tired of pedestrian costume contests, or were never into them to begin with, Sonoma's is the place to be. For Halloween, although costumes are expected and accepted, the night will be business as usual with the customary menu and wines. Customers are invited to come by early for an evening snack before a big night on the town.

The Spot

1732 W. 18th St., 713-864-4485

The Spot is holding a Halloween party with a live band made entirely of lawyers, called Randy Marshall and the Law. The costume contest winner will be awarded a cash prize, so don't forget this Houston bar when Halloween rolls around. The party starts at 9 p.m. No cover.

Union Bar and Lounge

2708 Bagby, 281-974-1916

This cocktail bar in midtown will be holding a party it's calling One Naughty Night Out. It will include a costume competition with a cash prize of $1,000 to the winner, as well as drink specials, a party bar, and plenty of visual entertainment. Getting in is free, and the party will last from 4 p.m. to 2 a.m. the next morning.

West Alabama Ice House

1919 W. Alabama, 713-528-6874

The West Alabama Ice House is hosting Nightmare on Alabama Street, a party that promises a costume contest, live music by Human and more than 50 lit pumpkins handcrafted by visitors the night before in a pumpkin-carving contest.

November 2-21

TBH Gallery

333 S. Jensen Dr., 713-222-1213

www.tbhcenter.org

The Talento Bilingüe de Houston will be celebrating Día de los Muertos, The Day of the Dead, by showing two fantastic exhibits: "Arbol de la Esperanza/Tree of Hope," a Día de los Muertos altar by Elvira Díaz-Ocampo, which was constructed in recognition of the soldiers in Iraq, and a collection of photographs called Fiesta de Muertos a la Oaxaca, by Mary Helen and Roberto Perez. Hours are from 10 a.m. to 8 p.m. Mondays through Friday. Free.

Costumes and Decorations

Bedrock City Comic Co.

Multiple Locations, www.bedrockcity.com

The Lucky 13th annual Halloween sale has finally come. Come in costume October 31 and get fabulous loot at fabulous sale prices. Not brave enough for a costume? It's okay, everyone saves. November 2, 3 and 4.

Bizarre Bazaar

Five locations, www.bizarrebazaarhouston.com

Your Halloween costume one-stop. Bizarre Bazaar has everything from sexy-cop to teachers-pet costumes, as well as a full line of men's costumes.

Cindies

Six locations, www.cindies.com

Cindie's sells costumes filled with fantasy and fun.

Danny's Trix & Kix

3400 FM 2920, Spring, 281-353-6618

Danny's offers Halloween costumes and accessories.

DareWare

9019 Westheimer, 713-953-9393,

Looking for a sexy Halloween outfit? Look no further.

Frankel's Costume Co.

2801 Polk, 713-228-9445,

www.frankelcostume.com

Costumes, costume accessories, make-up and magic.

Goodwill Houston

Various locations

www.goodwillhouston.org.

If you're looking for a truly unique costume this Halloween, head over to Goodwill, where they're prepared with all kinds of clothing that can be changed to suit your needs. They even provide suggestions on how to make a cheap and attractive costume that will easily rival those that are preassembled. Goodwill gives you a spooky alternative with the added benefit of helping those in need.

Party Boy

1515 Studemont, 713-861-9080

Party Boy offers costumes and

decorations.

Pleasure Zone

5705 Richmond, 832-251-8400

Pleasure Zone offers costumes of all kinds for men and women alike, as well as anything else you might need for a sensual and sexy Halloween, or a funny Halloween if that's more your speed. There are plus sizes and the most diverse collection in Houston.

The Way We Wore

2602 Waugh Dr., 713-526-8910

The Way We Wore offers a great selection of ready-to-wear and rentable costumes, as well as wigs and vintage clothing for all your Halloween costume needs.

Wear it Again Sam

373 W. 19th St., 713-862-9327

www.wearitagainsamhouston.com

If you're looking for the perfect, one-of-a-kind costume, try this vintage clothing store on for size.

Candy Stores

Candylicious

1837 W. Alabama, 713-529-6500

Costumed Halloween visitors will be rewarded with a free "Goodie Candy Bag" anywhere from 10 a.m. to 10 p.m.

The Chocolate Bar

1835 W. Alabama,

713-520-8599,

www.theoriginalchocolatebar.com

Stop by in costume anywhere from 10 a.m. to midnight, and you'll receive a free small ice cream from the store "where every hour is happy hour."

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