By Chris Lane
By Jeff Balke
By Aaron Reiss
By Angelica Leicht
By Dianna Wray
By Aaron Reiss
By Camilo Smith
By Craig Malisow
Michael Jackson. Trend spotters say his face will be everywhere you look this coming year, and why not? It certainly has a ghostly aspect, although one wonders how all the would-be Michaels will manage the nose. But if your idea of a good time doesn't include wearing the face and makeup of a celebrity who died a sudden, tragic death, or you already did the Heath Ledger thing last year, maybe you should lighten things up with a costume from Star Trek. In any event, a Saturday-night Halloween makes this year's holiday all the more special, and there are plenty of events leading up to the big day.
ACE Community Theatre
17011 Bamwood, 281-587-1020
Enjoy a revival of cult classic musical The Rocky Horror Show at ACE Community Theatre. Purchase a favor bag to participate in the show. On Halloween night, come in costume for a kitschy rock and roll "sci-fi gothic" event. The party starts at 8 p.m. on Fridays and Saturdays, and at midnight on October 17 and Halloween night. The price is $20 for adults and $15 for seniors and students. Through October 31.
Discover Houston Tours
912 Prairie, 713-222-9255
Listen to true tales and urban legends on this nighttime walking tour in the Downtown Historic District featuring: Ghosts of Spaghetti Warehouse, Ghosts of The Confederacy, Charlie Chaplin at the Isis, The Hanging Oak, and The Barmaid's Best Friend. Tickets are $30. Registration is at 6:30 p.m. at Discover Houston Tours, 912 Prairie. The tour goes from 7 to 10 p.m. There will be free happy hour appetizers, $3 beer and $3 well drinks at the Isis, as well as a 30-minute rest stop at Landry's Downtown Aquarium. Everyone will receive a copy of Sandra Lord's Short Guide to the Paranormal. Parking is free after 6 p.m. and on weekends, except at specially marked meters. The dates of the tours are October 15 through 17, 22 through 23, 29 and 31.
During October, Galveston's haunted history is explored in three intriguing tours. During the Ashton Villa "Are We Haunted?" Tour, find out if the villa's haunted by the spirit of "Miss Bettie," the daughter of the house's first owner, James Moreau Brown. The tour also features the restoration in progress on the ground-floor level, follows damage by Hurricane Ike, and explores the undamaged second floor. The Haunted Harbor Excursion is a look at the water and waterfront. For this tour, trained GHF guides present a fascinating, frightening look at the many tragic events that have occurred in and around Galveston Harbor, all while aboard the 50-foot passenger boat Seagull II. There's also a "Spirits of the Past" Cemetery Tour. Ashton Villa's "Are We Haunted?" Tour: Fridays at 5, 7 and 9 p.m. and 3 and 5 p.m. on Halloween night. Haunted Harbor Tours aboard Seagull II: Fridays and Saturdays at 4:30 p.m., and October 30 and 31 at 4:30 and 6 p.m. Haunted Cemetery Tours: October 29, 30 and 31 at 6:30 and 8 p.m.
The Health Museum
1515 Hermann Dr., John P. McGovern Building, 713-942-7054
Through November 1, The Health Museum will be hosting its first annual Siege of the Skeletons, a community art project featuring papier-mâché skeletons submitted by teams from all over Houston. Tuesdays through Saturdays, the hours are from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Sunday hours are noon to 5 p.m. Visit the museum before October 22 to vote for your favorite skeleton, then come back October 29 to see if your pick wins. Skeletons also will be judged by Texas Medical Center partners and museum professionals. Viewing the skeletons is included with the purchase of a general admission ticket.
6200 Golf Course Dr., 713-533-6713
Bring your little ghouls and goblins to the Houston Zoo for Zoo Boo, Houston's largest family-friendly Halloween, which will run five days this year. Enjoy safe Halloween trick-or-treating, music and fun activities with a "naturally wild" twist Saturdays and Sundays, October 17, 18, 24, 25 and 31 from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Pick a "child-size" pumpkin to paint and decorate from the Fiesta Mart Pumpkin Patch; participate in the costume parade; channel your inner artist and contribute to the Cooper Tools Monster Mural; or visit the Gardere Wynne Sewell Tatzoo Parlor for a spooktacular temporary tattoo. All this, and there'll be Halloween-themed Meet the Keeper Talks and the animal-themed Trunk-or-Treat candy stations. All Zoo Boo activities are included with paid zoo admission. Zoo Boo is free for zoo members. Regular admission is $10 for adults, $6 for seniors, $6 for children ages two to 11 and free for children under two. Visit the courtesy booth at your neighborhood Fiesta Mart and purchase an adult zoo admission for $8 and a child zoo admission for $5.
Bradford and 2nd Street, 877-285-3624
Through Halloween night, the Boardwalk will be holding a variety of events including the Dungeon of Doom haunted house, which is open every night from 6 to 10 p.m. Mondays through Thursdays; 6 to 11 p.m. Fridays; 2 p.m. to midnight Saturdays; and 2 to 10 p.m. on Sundays. Other events include live music by the Boogie Man Band and a kids' costume contest on October 24 and 31 (with prizes for the best ten kids).