Bayou City Haunts: The 2016 Houston Press Halloween Guide
Halloween is right around the corner, so it’s time to get spooked. Houston-area haunts are ready to frighten and delight with a fantastic lineup of events. The only thing not scary about the season is that there’s something for everyone. From trick-or-treating for the kids to costume parties for the kids at heart to ghastly ghost tours and haunted houses that are sure to draw some screams, here’s a look at what’s going on in Houston this Halloween (including a selection of festive shops where you can get started on that costume):
Through October 31
Boo on the Boardwalk
215 Kipp, Kemah, kemahboardwalk.com
All ages are welcome to partake in a spookily good time when the Kemah Boardwalk transforms into an eerie playground throughout October. Halloween lovers can face their fears and explore the dark side in the terrifying Dungeon of Doom Haunted House, located in the breezeway under the Boardwalk Inn. Young ones will love the Little Boo Haunted Fun House, plus treats like pumpkin decorating, trick or treating throughout the retail stores, and weekly features like Freaky Friday Movie Night, Spooky Saturdays, Scary Sundays and a special Zombie Night Party on October 22.
Halloween Monster Mayhem
1500 Binz, 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Tuesday through Saturday, 10 a.m. to 8 p.m. Thursdays (Free Family Night 5 to 8 p.m.), noon to 6 p.m. Sundays, Halloween Night open to 8 p.m., $12, cmhouston.org
Monstrous mayhem will be unleashed when the Children’s Museum of Houston is transmogrified into the Monsters’ Museum of Houston for three weeks of Halloween fun. Kids are invited to see how monsters have rummaged, scoured, combed and turned the museum upside down to make room for their monster lairs. The hair-raising experience will allow kids to “catch monsters” in the act, participate in monster hobbies and discover why monsters may just be misunderstood. It will also feature fun events like trick-or-treat monster hunts (4-6 p.m. weekdays, 4-8 p.m.Thursdays and all day weekends through Halloween Night); black widow spider puppet-making and zombie brain mask-crafting; a Ghostbusters Day on October 22; and Moe’s Monster Bash on October 31. All events and activities are included with general admission.
Putt-Putt FunHouse’s Monster Go Family Phone Adventure
806 East Nasa, 10 a.m. to 8 p.m. Sunday through Thursday, 10 a.m. to 11 p.m. Friday and Saturday, puttputtfunhouse.com
The hunt is on all month long as families are invited on a quest to find the five monsters hidden throughout the FunHouse. Snap a picture with each one and get a free bag of candy.
Through November 2
National Museum of Funeral History
415 Barren Springs, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Monday through Friday, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday and noon to 5 p.m. Sunday, nmfh.org
Halloween in Houston wouldn’t be nearly eerie enough without a trip to the National Museum of Funeral History. This year, the museum is celebrating with a variety of Halloween happenings, from the 5th Annual Haunted House to a Día de los Muertos celebration (note: all events require paid admission).
All month long and through November 2, families can get into the Halloween spirit and be “scared to death” as they explore the 5th Annual Haunted House, where the scenes are designed to give goose bumps to young and old alike. The house is rated PG-13 and is recommended for children ages 12 and up. Children under 12 are welcome, but must be accompanied by an adult. Admission to the haunted house is $5 per adult and $3 for kids 11 and under, with tickets offered at half-price when purchased with museum admission.
On Saturday, October 22, from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m., guests will have the chance to see more than 150 cars at the 9th Annual Halloween Car Show. In addition to both contemporary and classic cars, the family-friendly fall festival will feature face painting and arts and crafts for the kids, food from local vendors, a live DJ and a silent auction. Admission is $3 per person or $5 per couple/family.
And on Saturday, November 5, from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m., the Día de los Muertos (Day of the Dead) celebrations hope to educate Houstonians on the customs of the Latin American community in honoring deceased loved ones. Guests can marvel at the artistry, explore full-scale models of a traditional Mexican home and graveyard, and bring mementos of the dearly departed to help build the museum’s community altar. There will be sweet treats, fun activities and a story time for kids from 3:30 to 4:30 p.m. Day of the Dead exhibit and activities are included in museum admission ($10 per adult, $9 for seniors/veterans, $7 for children ages six to 11, and free for children five and under).
Beginning October 15
“Siege of Skeletons” Exhibit at The Health Museum
1515 Hermann Drive, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Saturday, 9 a.m. to 7 p.m. Thursday and noon to 5 p.m. Sunday, $7 to $9 (free for museum members and children under three), thehealthmuseum.org/siege
Earlier this month, artists and groups of all ages were invited to enter their best rendition of a life-size human skeleton in order to participate in a fun and unique creative competition. Beginning October 15, museum visitors can check out the “Siege of Skeletons” exhibit and vote on their favorite entries through October 26. The winning entry will be announced live on The Health Museum’s Facebook page on Friday, October 28.
Broadway Cemetery Tours
4201 Broadway, 9 and 10:15 a.m., $15, galvestonhistory.org
Tour Galveston’s famous Broadway Cemetery, where, beginning in 1839 with the donation of four square blocks of land, the grouping of cemeteries on the central boulevard grew to include seven separate cemeteries within its gates.
Hocus Pocus Screening at GreenStreet
1201 Fannin, 8 p.m., free, greenstreetdowntown.com
Friday Flicks on The Lawn gets festive with Hocus Pocus. Blankets and lawn chairs are welcome.
October 21 and 28
Museum of Madness and Mayhem Haunted House
13016 University, houstonishalloween.com
The Houston Zombie Walk will play host to a special Museum of Madness and Mayhem Haunted House at the Houston Museum of Natural Science at Sugar Land for two special nights.
October 21-22 and 28-29
Haunted Harbor Tours Onboard the Seagull II
Pier 22, 5:15 p.m., $20 for adults, $17 for youth ages six to 18, free for children five and under, galvestonhistory.org
The narrated exploration of spooky corners and tragic sites in and around Galveston’s storied harbor takes place aboard the 50-foot passenger boat Seagull II, with departures from the Texas Seaport Museum.
ArBOOretum Houston Arboretum & Nature Center
4501 Woodway, noon to 4 p.m., $13 pre-order and $15 at the door for ages three and up, houstonarboretum.org
All the little goblins and ghouls and their parents are invited to play, learn and have an enchanting day enjoying Halloween festivities at the Houston Arboretum. Kids will love the Trick or Treat Trails, hay rides through the forest, train rides, live owls, a petting zoo and pony rides, as well as pumpkin decorating.
East End Bike Ride — Cemetery Gates #2
911 Milby, 7 p.m., free, criticalmasshouston.com
Critical Mass’s biggest ride of the year will meet at D&W Lounge at 7 p.m. and roll for a 20-mile cemetery bike tour starting at 7:30 p.m. There will be four to five stops featuring some of Houston’s oldest and less well known cemeteries. Cyclists are invited to don their best skeleton costume or Día de los Muertos face paint.
Ghost Tours at the 1859 Ashton Villa
2328 Broadway, 7 and 8:15 p.m., $30, galvestonhistory.org
Enjoy a rare tour through this 1859 building as guides tell stories of the early days of Galveston’s formation and exceptional life, and possible afterlife, of the home’s Miss Bettie Brown.
Fanatical Change Presents Politicians, Playboys and Performers Halloween Gala
2200 Texas, 7 p.m. to 2 a.m., $25-$125 fanaticalchange.org
The Fanatical Change Foundation, a charity that raises money for families who have suffered recent life-altering tragedies, will play host to this year’s Halloween theme party at BBVA Compass Stadium. Throughout the event, guests can enjoy live music and DJs, cocktails, hors d’oeuvres, multiple photobooths and a huge auction of unique items. Costume and cocktail attire are welcome.
Magical Candles — Halloween Craft Workshop
321 19th, 7 to 9 p.m., $28, popshophouston.com
Pop Shop Houston’s Magical Candles Workshop allows crafters to work with essential oils and quartz crystals to make candles scented with florals, citrus and herbs.
Scream on the Green Discovery Green
1500 McKinney, 7:30 to 10:30 p.m., free, discoverygreen.com
Bank of America Screen on the Green presents Little Shop of Horrors. Blankets, lawn chairs and picnics are welcome. Beer, wine and concessions will be available for purchase.
Lanternlight Tours of the 1892 Bishop’s Palace
1402 Broadway, 8:30 p.m., $30, galvestonhistory.org
Experience Bishop’s Palace in a whole new light, as this special tour lets visitors explore the National Historic Landmark and see how this architectural gem takes on a completely different look in the night.
1838 Menard House Séance
1605 33rd, 9 p.m., $150, galvestonhistory.org
Join natural-born psychic Sharon Michelle as she guides a group of 12 guests through the spirits of Galveston’s oldest home, the 1838 Michel B. Menard House.
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