Who's your Boo?! 2015 CL Halloween Events Guide

What to do to amuse yourself and bemuse your loved ones this Halloween season.

click to enlarge Gravely enchanting: Maya Handa Naff in The Importance of Being Earnest with Zombies. - Allison Davis Photography
Allison Davis Photography
Gravely enchanting: Maya Handa Naff in The Importance of Being Earnest with Zombies.

When there's just a vague hint of fall in the air, the Halloween events rear their ghoulish heads. in this spirit, CL will feature an ongoing listing of upcoming adult-only and family-friendly Halloween-themed events until Day of the Dead caps it all off. We're including everything from parties to Haunted Houses to art shows to bookish thrills. Like a monster spawn from a nuclear well, it will grown and morph until All Hallow's Eve arrives. 

Halloween Ybor City Ghost Tours The Official Ybor City Ghost Tour continues to receive top awards and ratings for its tours, being awarded the USAToday.com Ten Best Ghost Tours Nationwide award. Founded in 2011, the Ybor Ghost Tour reveals the ghost stories on one of the most haunted towns in the U.S. The tour is a daily event, but with Halloween coming up, this is an especially busy time. Back by popular demand is the special 11 p.m. exploration of the Cuban Club, which has been recognized nationwide as one of the most haunted buildings in the U.S. Children under 16 must be accompanied by an adult. Reservations required. Adults: $25, Children 6-12: $10. Sat., Oct. 31, 6, 8:30 and 11 p.m. King Corona Cigars and Cafe, 1523 E. Seventh Ave., Tampa. 813-241-9109. yborghosttour.com.

Scary Movie Poster ShowA Style Raggs production, the themed art show consisting of 21 local artists creating their own original movie posters surrounding scary themes. Artists are exploring an array of 2-D mediums in their individual style. The art show will be at Tin & TONIK is the newest addition to Seminole Heights and is a barbershop, beauty shop, and art parlor. Closing reception is Fri., Nov. 13, 7-10 p.m. Tin & Tonik, 4232 N. Florida Ave., Tampa. 813-513-8940. tinandtonik.com.

The Importance of Being Earnest with Zombies Nothing in local theaters quite compares to freeFall's season debut, which brings us Oscar Wilde's clever repartee, comedy of errors and period costumes with a dash of necrosis. freeFall’s production stars Nick Lerew as John Worthing and Daniel Schwab as Algernon Moncrieff. Portraying two bachelor friends, in this version they will lead double lives slaying zombies and wooing the fair Gwendolyn Fairfax (Kelly Pekar) and Cecily Cardew (Maya Handa Naff). The theater's tagline sums it up best: "sidesplitting riff on decorum and decay." Also appearing:  Kim Crow as Lady Bracknell, Jennifer Christa Palmer as zombie hunter Miss Prism (American Stage’s One Slight Hitch), Larry Alexander (Les Miserables on Broadway) and Matthew McGee (freeFall’s Mame). Perennial local favorites Alexander and McGee will play Rev. Canon Chasuble and Lane/Merriman. Runs through Nov. 1 at 6099 Central Ave., St. Petersburg. Click here for tickets.

ZooBoo KIDS Designed for a younger audience, ZooBoo KIDS is a daytime Halloween celebration with a whimsical twist— candy, bats and scaredy cats. All-new “fright-free” festivities feature trick-or-treat stations, crazy mazes, kooky (not spooky) character appearances, jeepers creepers critter encounters, barnyard animal parades, Monster Mash groovy tunes and more. Event dates are October 23-26, 30-31 and Nov. 1. The Zoo opens at 9:30 a.m. with Halloween festivities from 1-7 p.m. (extended hours). ZooBoo KIDS is presented by Florida Central Credit Union. For details, visit www.LowryParkZoo.org/ZooBooKIDS.

Harvestmoon Farm Corn Maze The ghost of the Tampa Bay Lightning’s run to the Stanley Cup Final is haunting Harvestmoon Farm in Masaryktown, Hernando County, which has designed a special Lightning-themed corn maze that will be unveiled to the public starting Sat., Oct. 3. The five-acre corn maze will incorporate the Lightning logo into its design as well as other Lightning-specific images. Tampa Bay mascot ThunderBug and the Lightning Girls will appear at the maze’s grand opening on Oct. 3, and anybody wearing Lightning gear while the maze is up and running will be admitted for $10, a $2 discount off the regular price. The maze will be open Saturdays and Sundays October through November, weather permitting, from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. (last ticket sold at 4 p.m.).  In addition to the maze, Harvestmoon Farm offers a 70-foot jumping pillow, a pumpkin patch, petting farm, corn box, cow train and barnyard playground. New this year is a hill slide and, on select dates, flashlight nights where visitors can roam the maze in the dark. Food vendors offering various snacks and drinks will be on site as well. Regularly priced tickets for the corn maze are $11.95 plus tax for ages three and up. Children two and under are free. Harvestmoon Farm is located at 15990 Stur St., Masaryktown, Fla. For more information, visit harvestmoonfl.com.

Universal Orlando: Halloween Horror Nights 25 Celebrating the 25th anniversary of Universal Orlando’s huge Halloween scare-fest, this year's tribute is to the legendary Jack the Clown, who will return to present the biggest and scariest horror night yet. Nine movie-quality mazes include The Walking Dead: The Living and the Dead, Insidious, Freddy vs. Jason, The Purge, An American Werewolf in London, Jack Presents: 25 Years of Monsters and Mayhem, Asylum in Wonderland 3D, Body Collectors-Recollectors, and Run: Blood Sweat, and Fears. Five new scare zone themes range in style from the eeriest icons of Halloween Horror Nights to a twisted and sinister world of steam punk (“Screampunk”). Live shows include Bill & Ted’s Excellent Halloween Adventure and The Carnage Returns. Select nights from Sept. 18 through Nov. 1, 6:30 p.m.-2 a.m. General admission ranges $102. Florida resident: $50-77. Upgrades and packages available online. halloweenhorrornights.com/Orlando.

Skull Asylum Zombie FX Classes A private offering, classes will work around peoples schedules during the week. Special weekend classes will be offered on Saturday and Sunday 11 a.m.- and 3 p.m.  until the end of October. Classes are two hours long. Skull Asylum will only be accepting five students at a time slot on these days to provide a thorough hands-on demonstration. Students will have the opportunity to experience all application, design, painting, as well as bloodying up their creations.  Zombie face appliances will be available for purchase throughout the studio. All Zombie appliances are hand sculpted and molded by SFX instructors. Classes are on a cash basis only and must be prepaid and is non refundable. Participants younger than 18 will need to have parental release form signed. Skull Asylum will also be offering custom horror makeup for people going to Halloween events. Advanced SFX Zombie makeup class is available . This class is a film quality sfx makeup class and is $250 — it will teach you how to make Walking Dead zombies from scratch. Class will include. Visit giancarlobrajdic.wix.com/skull-asylum-sfx-#! for details.

Haunted House: Chamber of Terror What couldn’t be a more horror-movie-perfect location for a haunted house than an abandoned toy factory? Located in Last Laugh Toy Company’s old building, you’ll be haunted by screwed-up toys, demented stuffed animals, eerie dolls, and the icon of childhood terror: psychotic clowns. For 10 years, Last Laugh Toy Company has been scaring the Tampa Bay area, so they know how to scare right. Follow them on Facebook for updates and sneak-peeks. General: $10. Speed Pass: $15. Open every weekend in October. 813-375-9712. Last Laugh Toy Company, 4535 S Dale Mabry, Tampa. Chamberofterrorfl.com.

Howl-o-Scream Busch Gardens is bringing out the big players for their annual Halloween park-turned-haunted-house. This year's theme is "Unearthed: Scarlett's Revenge," from the producer of the Blair Witch Project, Robin Cowie. He talks about taking on this project,It’s live, immersive terror and it can take your breath away.” Experiences include seven haunted houses, Club Unearthed dance club at the Marrakesh Theater, full-liquor service bars throughout the park, and your favorite park rides and rollercoasters. Select nights from Sept. 25 through Oct. 31. Freaky Preview nights (Sept. 25 & 26): $45. Regular Price: $60. Gate price: $90. Package deals and upgrades available online. seaworldparks.com/en/buschgardens-tampa/howloscream/.

The Murder Mystery Company Experience what we're told is a "night of intrigue, deception, and delicious food." Get your Halloween festivities started early, and prepare your sleuthing skills for this comedic thriller. Tickets are subject to availability. Sat., Oct. 24, 7-9:30 p.m. Tampa Pitcher Show, 14416 N. Dale Mabry, Tampa. 888-643-2583. murdermysterydinnertampa.com.

Scream-a-Geddon The all-new horrifying Halloween theme park will open its creaky gates at the beginning of the Halloween season, spooking us out with six haunted attractions, the Monster Midway and more across 60 acres of Old Florida forest. Through Nov. 1. 27839 St. Joe Road, Dade City. screamageddon.com.

Silence! The Musical Filthy and unprintable lyrics ensue when Clarice Starling, Hannibal the Cannibal, and Buffalo Bill break into comical song in this unauthorized parody of The Silence of the Lambs. Jobsite is co-producing with the Straz Center at the Jaeb Theatre on this one. Through Nov. 22, Jobsite Theatre, Tampa, 813-229-STAR, jobsitetheater.org.

A Nightmare on Franklin Street Tampa Theatre presents once again a great lineup of horror and horror-ish movies from the animated Nightmare Before Christmas to the silent drama Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde, and everything in between. Because the historic landmark is known as one of the most haunted buildings in town, Tampa Theatre will also be conducting ghost tours that are kid-friendly and more adults-only shocking ones too. The series caps off with a screening of The Exorcist and its star, Linda Blair, visiting for a Q&A after the film.  Other titles include The Rocky Horror Picture Show, The Conjuring, Devil's Rejects and more. Visit tampatheatre.org for film schedule and other details.

The Vault of Souls
Dark and sinister interactive performance art with an upscale twist in the 92-year-old Exchange National Bank on Franklin Street, which opens its repository for the first time to provide a backdrop for some spooky shenanigans. Select dates in October; $100 per person for adults (18 and up only). Reservations requested; TheVaultofSouls.com.

Safety Harbor Walking Ghost Tour Take a spirited stroll in one of region's most historic and picturesque communities. Hear the legends and stories from long ago. See what spirits still roam today. Touch the trees that have Tocobaga Indian spirits. Bring a camera sure to catch orbs. $20 per person children 12 and under $15. Saturdays, 7-8:30 p.m. Through Dec. 19. John Wilson Park, 401 Main St., Safety Harbor. 727-687-8785. safetyharbortour.com.

Legoland's Brick-or-Treat Not as spooky as the current Lego shortage in stores (gasp!), Legoland's kids Halloween extravaganza is included with regular admission and takes place on weekends throughout October. Partake of themed treat stations with candy, a scavenger hunt in Miniland USA, Vladimir's Castle takeover, meet and greets with Halloween characters, fireworks and a kids only costume contest. $75, $65 seniors and ages 3-12. florida.legoland.com.

Ferg's $200 Costume Contest Party First Place $200, Runner Up $75. First 10 to enter will receive gifts from our sponsors. Join at Ferg's Upstairs VIP Bar. $10 to enter contest. $5 to party. Raffles, music and fun for the holiday. $5 to party $10 to enter contest. Fri., Oct. 30, 9:30 p.m.-midnight. Ferg's, 1320 Central Ave., St. Petersburg. 850-296-7516. fergssportsbar.com.

Halloween Happenings Games, Spooky Trail, Costume Contest (ages 0-12) and a movie Monsters University. Free. Fri., Oct. 30, 6-9 p.m. R.E. Olds Park, 107 Shore Drive W., Oldsmar. 813-749-1152. myoldsmar.com/DocumentCenter/View/3263.

Monster Splash Party Take a dip at a poolside Halloween costume party that is a fundraiser to benefit Feeding Tampa Bay. The lucky winner of Pumpkin Fight will be announced! Dean Hurst will be brewing up devilishly good libations as sounds of the season wail from every corner. We’ll be digging up prizes for best Best Couple and Most Original costumes, so dress up. Prizes include a one-Night Stay at the Epicurean Hotel and Dinner for Two at Élevage. Take an Uber to the event and show your receipt at the door to receive a complimentary cocktail. $10. Fri., Oct. 30, 8 p.m.-midnight. Epicurean Hotel, 1207 S. Howard Ave., Tampa. 813-999-8700. EpicureanHotel.com.

Zombie Prom Be like Molly Ringwald and Andrew McCarthy in Pretty in Pink but the version with a little more rot and caked-on blood. Out of the Pot, Zombie Killer (among other zombie-themed brews). Free admission. Fri., Oct. 30, 8-11 p.m. West Bay Public House, 80 Clearwater-Largo Road S., Largo. 727-588-4444. https://www.facebook.com/events/1496644280634645/.

Height O' Ween Microgroove Records hosts the first ever Height of Fashion Halloween concert and costume party. The inaugural event's theme: the Films of Wes Anderson. Participants are invited to come dressed as your favorite character from Rushmore, The Royal Tenenbaums, The Life Aquatic with Steve Zissou, Bottle Rocket and other films in the artfully quirky director's catalogue.  Local band (and party planners) The Height Of Fashion will be performing songs from Wes Anderson's films along with some  fun covers. The winner of the Anderson movie character-themed costume contest will receive a Microgroove Gift Certificate. All ages welcome, and the shop will have extended hours for browsing between mingling. Fri., Oct. 30, 7 p.m., Microgroove Records, 4906 N. Florida Ave., Tampa; click here for event page

Halloween Monster Mash Head to Local 662 for twistedly enchanting entertainment from The 20 Penny Circus, and live music from Twisty Chris & the Puddin' Packs, The Funeral Dazies, Nerds Raging, and the Buck-0-Weens. The bar will be prepped for Halloween with spooky cocktails and decor for a wild night. Other events that night include a Magic Hat Bike raffle, costume contest, and more. $5 or two-drink minimum. Sat., Oct. 31, 7 p.m.-3 a.m. Local 662, 662 Central Ave., St. Petersburg. 727-258-4829. thelocal662.com.

Chic-a-Boo! A Halloween party and costume contest at the always festive Chic-a-Boom Room in downtown Dunedin. Compete for $2,500 cash and prizes, including first, second and third place awards for Best Costume and a category for Most Original. DJ Luis Martinez spins. Show and contest begins at 9 p.m. Sat., Oct. 31, 8 p.m.-3 a.m., Chic-a-Boom Room, 319 Main St., Dunedin. 727-736-0206, $10 cover, kellyschicaboom.com

World's Largest Food Truck Rally 4 The rally will feature more than 100 different food trucks at Albert Whitted Park on Halloween. The event will also be Halloween themed with live, local music. $8 early bird admission, $50 VIP. Sat., Oct. 31, 11 a.m.-6 p.m. Albert Whitted Park, 480 Bayshore Drive S.E., St. Petersburg. 813-562-9599. facebook.com/worldslargestfoodtruckrally.

Ghouls Just Wanna Have Fun Halloween Party DJ/Dancing, '80s music, costume contests and more. $20 in advance online; $25 cash at the door. Sat., Oct. 31, 8-11 p.m. Rocky Point Golf Course, 4151 Dana Shores Drive, Tampa. 813-610-3132. Purchase tickets here.

Glazer Children’s Museum Annual Halloween Spree On Oct. 31 from 4:30 to 8 p.m., the allegedly silliest Halloween party in the Bay will take place. Throughout the evening, children can enjoy free arts and crafts, indoor trick-or-treating stations, costume parades, and dance the night away as today’s hits play on the dance floor. Tickets are starting at $8 for Museum members, $10 for general admission and can be purchased at glazermuseum.org/event/halloweenspree.

Halloween Silent Disco During the Tampa Museum of Art's Halloween Silent Disco, guests will don custom-designed headphones that transmit music from different DJs to your ears. Cash bar and Sono Café food available for purchase. Costumes encouraged. Proceeds support K-12 student educational visits to the Tampa. General: $35, Members: $25. Sat., Oct. 31, 8-11 p.m. Tampa Museum of Art, 120 W. Gasparilla Plaza, Tampa. 813-274-8130. tampamuseum.org.

Spooky Empire Ultimate Halloween Weekend One of the largest horror conventions in the nation, Ultimate Horror Weekend features appearances and autograph signings by horror genre celebrities including horror, science fiction and fantasy film and television actors, special effects artists, rock star musicians, horror novelists, graphic artists, and more. Featured events include tattoo festivals, Zombie Walk, costume contests, live performances, film festivals, a celebrity poker tournament for charity, and memorable VIP parties. More than 200 vendors will offer the ultimate in horror merchandise. $35-$40 per day; at door $40-$45 per day. Kids under 10 free. Fri., Oct. 30, 5-11 p.m.; Sat., Oct. 31, 11 a.m.-8 p.m.; Sun., Nov. 1, 11 a.m.-5 p.m. Hyatt Regency Orlando, 9801 International Drive, Orlando. 954-258-7852. spookyempire.com.

Red Mesa Cantina Halloween Costume Party & Contest The restaurant is hosting an extra huge celebration this year. More than $2,200 in prizes for most creative costume, scariest, sexiest and best look-alike costumes. No advance registration required. No cost to enter. Red Mesa Cantina, 128 Third St. S., St. Pete, rmcantina.com, facebook.com/redmesacantina.

Seminole Heights Halloween Party  Creepy Hour 1-8 p.m. with drink and food specials, DJ Blenda takes over from 10 p.m. to 2:30 a.m. on Sat., Oct. 31. A costume contest will judge and award the best getups of the night. Fodder and Shine, 5910 N. Florida Ave., Tampa. Click here for event page.

The Boo Bash at Bright House Networks Field  Take the kiddies Saturday, 5:30-8:30 p.m., trick or treating at 35 candy stations on the ballpark's concourse. Games, a hayride, spook house, inflatables and other interactive activities can be enjoyed. Click here for more information.

Heroes & Villains Halloween Ball Hard Rock Cafe Tampa in Seminole Hard Rock Hotel & Casino Tampa will host a big bash on Halloween night at 10 p.m. (no masks or full facial make-up allowed).  93.3 FLZ’s Brian Fink emcees, and the event will feature entertainment from some of Tampa’s top DJ’s, stilt walkers and comic figure entertainers. Las Vegas’ top female DJ GIRL 6 will be offering music mixes from the 80’s through today along with a special Halloween video remix show. DJ GIRL 6 is a pioneer in the video DJ movement and has been a touring DJ for such notables as Janet Jackson, Boy George, Wyclef and Sir Mix-A-Lot, among many others. Purchase tickets at ROCKTAMPA.com.

Veuve Clicquot Yelloween Transformed into a haunted hideaway with  music from Tampa Bay’s “Bay Kings Band," the Vinoy's party will offer nosh from Marchand’s Bar & Grill, which will be serving desserts and savory morsels at five Halloween-themed stations, with decadent fare like as duck meatloaf and roasted pig. Guests are encouraged to dress in their favorite Halloween costume or masquerade mask to win prizes for best costume. Tickets are priced at $55 per person and can be purchased via eventbrite.com, and include entry, a glass of Veuve Clicquot and access to the five dining stations. Saturday, Oct.  31,  8 p.m.-midnight (doors open at 7 p.m). For more information on The Vinoy Renaissance Resort & Golf Club, visit vinoyrenaissanceresort.com

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