It's time once again to don a costume and head over to your favorite haunt for a chance at cheap drinks and expensive prizes. But be warned: You'll have to get your partying out of the way before the big day actually arrives. With the holiday falling on a Monday, most bars have decided that Halloween is coming early this year. Harry Potter's fans will be sending out the franchise with a bang, and the Super Hero Renaissance is far from over, so don't be surprised if any Norse gods or steroid-pumped soldiers show up on your doorstep.
House of Blues
1204 Caroline, 888-402-5837 www.houseofblues.com/houston
The Houston Press Halloween Bash featuring the Lucky Devil Thrillshow, a daredevil stunt spectacular that will make you think you're in Vegas, lights up downtown the Friday before Halloween. RVSP to the House of Blues Foundation Room Concierge at email@example.com. Party is free. Doors open at 7 p.m.
Discover Houston Tours
912 Prairie, 713-222-9255 www.discoverhoustontours.com Check out the Downtown Historic District with the help of a few ghost stories on one of the Discover Houston Tours annual Ghost Walks. Spend 90 minutes listening to tales such as the Ghost at La Carafe, The Donnellian Crypt, a Bridge Over Troubled Waters, The Barmaid's Best Friend and more. The tour will start at the Spaghetti Warehouse at 901 Commerce Street. Advance reservations are required at $15 per person. Paid parking is available in adjacent parking lots, and free on-street parking will be available Mondays through Saturdays after 6 p.m. and all day Sundays.
11500 Antoine Dr., 713-618-3323 www.thehauntedtrails.com Starting at 8 p.m. every weekend in October, thrill-seekers can face their nightmares in the aptly named Haunted Trails, where they will roam through constantly changing forest trails in a deep, dark wood. Admission is $15.
The Health Museum
1515 Hermann D., John P. McGovern Building, 713-942-7054 www.thehealthmuseum.org/skeletons From October 4 through November 6, The Health Museum will be hosting its third annual Siege of the Skeletons, a community art project featuring papier-mâché skeletons submitted by teams from all over Houston. This year's theme is "From Books to Bones," meaning that artists will be drawing inspiration from literary works as they compete for prizes. 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Tuesdays through Saturdays; noon to 5 p.m. Sundays.
Houston Haunted Houses
1500 Elton St., 713-946-2266 www.houstonhauntedhouses.com Houston Haunted Houses is celebrating its 13th Year of Terror, and so to thank its customers, it is giving away a free car. Entertainment will include a free concert, a free live freak show, free vendor booth spaces, and four separate haunted houses. The hours are from 8 p.m. to 1 a.m., and the cost is from $15 to $25.
6200 Golf Course Dr., 713-533-6713 www.houstonzoo.org
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 15, 16, 22, 23, 29 and 30 from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. And, to help visitors avoid the weekend crowds, Zoo Boo will take place on Fridays from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. on October 14, 21, and 28 as well as Halloween Monday, October 31.
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 Monster Mural; or visit the Tatzoo Parlor for a spooktacular temporary tattoo. This year's events will also feature the Monster Mashquerade, which will be taking place on weekends around the Reflection Pool. Children can sing, dance, and learn all the moves to "Thriller" before joining in for the costume parade. All this, and there will 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 $12 for adults, $6.50 for seniors, $8 for children ages 2 to 11 and free for children under 2.
Lawndale Art Center
4912 Main, 713-528-5858 www.lawndaleartcenter.org Lawndale Art Center is presenting its 24th Annual Día de los Muertos events, a celebration of Mexican culture and the customs of El Día de los Muertos. This program gives area artists and students the opportunity to show their works to diverse audiences in a museum-quality setting. This year's celebration will go from October 17 to November 5 and include such events as the Retablo Exhibition, community and musical ofrendas, a papel picado workshop and the Gala and Retablo Silent Auction. Volunteers and sponsors are needed.
18777 Highway 290, 713-526-3323 www.darke.com Phobia Haunted House is more than ready for Halloween with eight different haunted houses staged in one convenient location. Darke Institute, Mind Control, 3D Clown Phobia, Claustrophobia, Dawn of the Machine, Exile: Simon Fowler Woods, Mania and Darkeworld are all ready and waiting every weekend in October. Prices vary from $13 to $45 depending on how many houses participants choose to visit.
2225 North Sam Houston Parkway West Houston, 713-914-1313 www.screamworld.com
Promising to scare the "yell" out of you, ScreamWorld kicks off the Halloween haunt season as the longest running haunted attraction in Houston. ScreamWorld is a fright factory comprised of three haunted houses and an outdoor maze and cemetery. Along with The Haunted Hotel, Edge of Darkness, Movie Monsters, Maze of Maniacs, and The Tobias Strange Family Cemetery, newer attractions include The Psycho Path and Jake's Slaughterhouse. The park opens at 7:30 p.m. on Thursdays and Sundays and 8 p.m. Fridays and Saturdays throughout October. General admission tickets are $25 per person to visit the five haunted attractions and $29 for a VIP Fast Pass, with no waiting in line. Sundays and Thursdays are Super Discount nights, with tickets just $17.
ComedySportz Arena 901 Town & Country Blvd., 713-868-1444 www.comedysportzhouston.com Guests who attend the ComedySportz Halloween-themed matches that will take place at 8 p.m. on Friday and at 8 and 10:30 p.m. on Saturday will receive discounts on tickets.
1900 Kane St., 713-802-9370 www.meca-houston.org From 7 p.m. opening night on October 28, followed by events on October 29 and 30 from 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. and 11 a.m. to 6 p.m., respectively, MECA will present Dia De Los Muertos: Honoring our Past, Celebrating Our Future. This event features Dia de los Muertos celebrations from throughout Latin America, with an altar exhibit competition, foods from the Americas, vendors selling authentic Latin American Dia de los Muertos arts and crafts, and a Calavera Fashion Show. It is held at MECA's campus located at the Dow School in Houston's Old Sixth Ward. Opening night admission is $20; the following days' admission is free of charge.
OCTOBER 29 and 30
2200 Southwest Fwy., Suite 150
713-528-MEZZ www.mezzaninelounge.com On Friday, there will be a haunted poker tourney. It's free to play and there's a chance to win prizes. Saturday is the Horrorfest Party with a $250 costume party and karaoke. On Halloween Day, Monday, there will be games and prizes with drink specials all night.
Texas Renaissance Festival
21778 FM 1774, Plantersville, Texas, 800-458-3435 www.texrenfest.com Head to the Texas Renaissance Festival for an olden take on Halloween in the All Hallows Eve Adventure, which will feature a Banshee Screeching Contest, a pumpkin carving contest, a costume contest, and a candied-apple eating contest. The event will be open from 9 a.m. to dusk each day.
FRIDAY, OCTOBER 28
Longwood Golf Course
13300 Longwood Trace Dr.
713-398-2118 Registration starts at 11 a.m., with the putting contest beginning at 11:30 a.m. There's a 1 p.m. shotgun start with a box lunch, and at 6 p.m. there will be a post play dinner and silent auction for the golfers and their families. All proceeds go to the Down Syndrome Association of Houston. Prizes will be handed out for costumes, closest to the pin and longest drive.
The Concert Pub (Galleria)
5636 Richmond, 713-278-7272 www.theconcertpub.com The pub will be celebrating with a Halloween party featuring the Spicolis in true '80s form.
3700 Main Street, 713-529-9899 www.continentalclub.com The Club will be celebrating Discoween with Disco Expressions from 10 p.m. to 2 a.m.
2016 Main, 713-751-3101 www.2016mainstage.com Mainstage will be hosting The Spazmatics Totally 80's Halloween Party, an outside new wave '80s show complete with food trucks, drink specials and a costume contest. Inside the club, there will be five DJs spinning throughout the party. Doors open at 7 p.m., and the show starts at 9 p.m.
2200 Southwest Fwy.
www.mezzaninelounge.com On Friday, there will be a haunted poker tourney. It's free to play and there's a chance to win prizes. Saturday is the Horrorfest Party with a $250 costume party and karaoke. On Halloween Day, Monday, there will be games and prizes with drink specials all night.
707 N. Shepherd Dr, Ste 500, 713-864-4242 www.gowonderwild.com From 6 to 8 p.m., Wonderwild will be holding its annual Halloween party. The party will feature crafts, a costume parade, and some tasty treats. Tickets must be purchased in advance. Kids' tickets are $10 each.
SATURDAY, OCTOBER 29
The 15th Annual Pimp & Prostitute Ball
801 St. Emanuel at Rusk
www.sportsmonkey.com Starting at 8 p.m. and going until 2 a.m., the annual Pimp and Prostitute Ball will be in full swing with multiple DJs, costume contests with $3,000 in cash and prizes for Pimp of the Year, Classiest Ho and Best Overall Costume. Participants must sign up by 10 p.m. There will be drink specials all night long, and although the theme is Pimp and Ho, all costumes are welcome. Tickets are $10 in advance and $15 at the door. SuperPimp Passes will be available for $40 in limited quantities, and will come with VIP considerations including a full-service bar and special entrance to the event.
Black Swan at The Omni Hotel
4 Riverway, 713-624-4828,
Head to the Omni Hotel for the Good Swans Go Bad Halloween Party, which includes a costume contest, specialty drinks, $1,000 worth of prizes, special overnight packages and no cover. The event will run from 8 p.m. to 2 a.m.
The Concert Pub (Galleria)
5636 Richmond, 713-278-7272 www.theconcertpub.com The bands MTA and OZZ will be featured to perform Metallica and Ozzy tributes.
The Concert Pub (North)
2470 FM 1960, 281-583-8111 www.theconcertpub.com/North This pub will celebrate with a costume contest and a Halloween performance by Victim.
Dan Electro's Guitar Bar
1031 E. 24th St., 713-862-8707 www.danelectrosguitarbar.com Head to Dan Electro's for a Beans Barton Halloween with Beans Barton and the Bipeds, with an appearance by the Tribal Lilies belly dancers. Doors open at 8 p.m. and the show begins at 9 p.m. The cover is $10 at the door. There will be a prize of performance art for best costume, gift certificates and other prizes.
1209 Caroline, 713-651-3988 www.dirtbar.com The Dirt Bar will be holding its seventh annual "Death Bar" Halloween Party from 6 p.m. to 2 a.m.
Fifth Annual Montrose Pub Crawl
www.montrosecrawl.com The Montrose Crawl has returned for its fifth year. This event combines a traditional pub crawl with the spirit of trick-or-treating as several hundred people dress in costume and visit bars and pubs on Westheimer in Montrose. This year's event will encompass nine separate venues. All Montrose Crawl participants are asked to dress in costume and to assemble at the restaurant Brasil, 2604 Dunlavy, at 6 p.m. on October 29. From there, the Montrose Crawl will make its way down Westheimer, with stops at Poison Girl, Boondocks, Anvil, Etro Lounge, Catbirds, Royal Oak, Slick Willie's, and The Hay Merchant, before coming to a close with midnight snacks at El Real Tex-Mex. Costumed participants will enjoy drink specials and Halloween activities at the bars, and the Montrose Crawl will award prizes for best costumes throughout the evening. This year's honorary Grand Crawler, Neartown President and City Council candidate David W. Robinson, will select the grand-prize winner.
Galveston Island Witches' Ball
Scottish Rite Cathedral Ballroom 2128 Church St., Galveston, 409-515-0669, www.witcheryonline.com Celebrate this spooky time of year with the Galveston Island Witches' Ball — a Halloween fundraiser party for the Galveston Island Humane Society. Only 150 tickets will be sold at $50 per person or $90 per couple. Only adults may attend, and should dress in costume or evening wear. There will be a costume contest with prizes awarded in the categories of Best Witch, Most Creative and Crowd Favorite. The event runs from 8 p.m. to 1 a.m.
Halloween Bash Benefiting Easter Seals
Corinthian 202 Fannin, 713-838-9050 www.houstonbash.com The Third Annual Halloween Bash Benefiting Easter Seals Greater Houston will be held at the Corinthian from 8 p.m. to 1 a.m. The celebration will include raffle prizes such as trips to Beaver Creek and Mexico along with items from Baccarat, Persona Med Spa and Chrysalis Spa, as well as a costume contest, cocktails and heavy hors d'oeuvres, and live music from both SKYROCKET and Disco Expressions, all to benefit Houstonians living with developmental disabilities. Tickets are $150 in advance, $200 at the door and sponsorships start at $2,500.
The Hideaway on Dunvale
3122 Dunvale Rd., 713-977-3515 www.hideawayondunvale.com The Hideaway will be holding a Classic Rock Halloween Bash with musical guest Quadraphonic. Guests are invited to come dressed as their favorite '60s or '70s rock star. The party will go from 9:30 p.m. to 1:30 a.m. The price is $5 at the door. Ages 21 and up only.
The Lake House in Cinco Ranch
25202 Springwood Lake Dr. From 10 a.m. to 4 p.m., all dogs (and their human companions) are invited for a day of spooky fun in Cinco Ranch. Celebrate Howl-A-Ween with arts and crafts, carnival games, pumpkin decorating and costume contests for children and pets alike. Dogs of all sizes are welcome, but they must be on a leash.
JP Hops House
2317 South Highway 6, 281-496-0623 www.jphopshouse.com JP Hops House will be having a Halloween Party featuring Smythe and Taylor with Kelly Lancaster.
315 Grand Ave., Bacliff, 281-559-3773 Katiesbar.com Celebrate with a look back at Pink Floyd at Katie's Bar's Annual Halloween Party. There will be drink specials and prizes for the best costumes.
300 Westheimer, 713-526-6551 www.numbersnightclub.com Numbers will be holding its Underworlds Halloween Monster Bash on October 29, complete with a costume contest, drink specials, and entertainment by the DJs Mina and vv James, as well as musical guests Goth, Industrial, and EBM. The doors open at 9 p.m., and the cover is $5 before 11 p.m. and $10 after.
3212 Kirby Houston Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=100002283236884 With a "Welcome to the Jungle" theme, all staff will be dressed like jungle animals and the patio decorated in a home-like (for them) setting. There will be shot specials all night and Monster Beer Bucket specials, along with prizes for Best Dressed and Worst Dressed. No cover.
Saengerfest Mini Monster Bash
Saengerfest Park 2302 Strand, Galveston, 409-762-6677 www.hauntedmayfieldmanor.com Haunted Mayfield Manor, along with Mitchell Historic Properties, will be hosting a special family-friendly Halloween carnival, The Saengerfest Mini Monster Bash, from 2 to 4 p.m. at Saengerfest Park. It will include a costume contest at 3 p.m., assorted games with prizes, and trick or treating at various downtown businesses. Children ages 11 and under are invited to come dressed in their favorite costumes for prizes in the scariest, cutest and most creative categories. Among other attractions will be activities such as arts and crafts, pumpkin "musical chairs" and face painting. The park will be decorated to provide the perfect spooky backdrop for Halloween photos. Haunted Mayfield Manor is offering a discounted ticket price during the carnival hours from 2 to 4 p.m. for older youngsters and adults.
6400 Richmond, 832-251-9600 www.stereolivehouston.com This year, Stereo Live will be holding its Second Annual Vampire's Ball featuring Carl Cox and Vaski. The party will be from 9 p.m. to 2 a.m., and ages 18 and up are welcome.
Thrill The World Houston
SSQQ Dance Studio 1431 W. 20th St., 713-869-0777 www.ssqqdance.com As part of a worldwide effort to simultaneously dance Michael Jackson's "Thriller" along with hundreds of cities on five continents, SSQQ Dance Studio will be hosting both a 9 a.m. and a 9 p.m. performance of the piece. Participants are advised to arrive at least one hour early to be included in the world record. There will be workshops held at 3 to 4 p.m. every Saturday until the event date. In addition to breaking a world record, the event is a fundraiser for the American Cancer Society. After the 9 a.m. performance, there will be a costume contest and a little dance party, best suited for adults.
SUNDAY, OCTOBER 30
The Concert Pub (North)
2470 FM 1960, 281-583-8111 www.theconcertpub.com/North This Halloween, the Concert Pub will celebrate with a Halloween Music Frenzy featuring 17 bands, two stages, and costume contests for scariest and best costumes. Entrance is $5 for 21 and up, $10 for 18 and up.
Dan Electro's Guitar Bar
1031 E. 24th St., 713-862-8707 www.danelectrosguitarbar.com The second day of the Dan Electro's Halloween celebration will feature entertainment from Feo y Loco, Jambolism and Way Way Out. Doors open at 2:30 p.m. and the show begins at 3 p.m. The cover is $10 at door. There will be plenty of prizes and drink specials throughout the day.
2040 W. Gray, www.beringomega.org Edward Sanchez and Américas River Oaks will host the 2011 Moulin Rouge All Hallows Eve celebration, a fundraising event that helps worthy nonprofit organizations within the Houston community. This year Bering Omega Community Services, which provides health care, specialized dental care and social services to men and women living with HIV or AIDS, has been chosen as the beneficiary. At 6:30 p.m., the event will kick off with a cocktail reception, after which there'll be a dinner catered by David Cordua at 7:30 p.m. and after-party cocktails and dancing at 9:30 p.m.. VIP tickets include access to the cocktail reception, dinner, and after-party. Single VIP tickets are $150. Couple VIP tickets are $275. Tickets to the Young Professionals After Party are $50.
MONDAY, OCTOBER 31
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300 Westheimer, 713-526-6551 www.numbersnightclub.com Numbers will be celebrating Halloween with a costume contest with a large cash prize, drink specials, and a cheap cover earlier in the evening. Doors open at 9 p.m. for all ages.
Kamibashi Asian Art
828-683-7994 www.kamibashi.com Enjoy the fun of Halloween and autumn all year long with an abundance of cute but spooky Kamibashi products, including their Freak-O-Bags and handmade and fair-trade dolls. Also available are Kamibashi cards that share the Halloween theme. Order online or visit the websites for stores carrying Kamibashi.
5705 Richmond, 832-251-8400 www.pzhouston.com There are more than 1,000 costumes to choose from, hundreds of stockings and other accessories available including handbags, hats and shoes. This is the exclusive provider of Trashy-brand costumes in Houston, and it also offers a large selection of men's costumes and women's plus-size costumes and accessories.