Guide to spooky events
The Ghouls come out on weekends at Six Flags Great America in Gurnee during Fright Fest. | Courtesy of Six Flags
Updated: October 19, 2012 9:24AM
Want to scare up some fun for Halloween? Check out our roundup of spooky events.
“Fright at Night” haunted house is open Oct. 26 at the Oak Park Conservatory, 615 Garfield St., Oak Park. Hours are 6-7 p.m. for ages 12 and under; 7-9 p.m. for ages 13 and up. $5 at the door. See www.oakparkconservatory.com or call (708) 386-4700.
The Tale of the Tombstones, the Historical Society of Oak Park and River Forest’s 21st annual cemetery tour, takes place at 1 p.m. Oct. 21 at Forest Home Cemetery, 863 Des Plaines Ave., Forest Park, with the theme, “Parks, Preserves and a Deadly Excursion.” The walk features costumed interpreters who portray both the notable and obscure people who are buried at the West Side cemetery. Tours leave every 10 minutes, the last one leaves at 2 p.m. This is a two-hour walking tour; dress appropriately and wear comfortable shoes. Admission: $15; $10 for members. Call (708) 848-6755 or visit www.oprfhstory.org.
“Spirits in the Night,” the Historical Society of Oak Park and River Forest’s two-hour haunted house walking tour is Nov. 1 and features costumed interpreters who will tell the stories of former inhabitants of the locations. The tour also includes an authentic Edwardian wake at the final stop of the tour, the 1913 Cheney Mansion. $25; $20 for members; $10 for children 12 and under (must be accompanied by an adult). Reservations are required; visit www.oprfhistory.org or call (708) 848-6755.
SCREAMS in the Park at Rosemont, a haunted house, will be open through Oct. 31 at the Park at Rosemont, just west of River Road between Bryn Mawr and Balmoral, next to Muvico, in Rosemont. The indoor attraction operates rain or shine, 7-11 p.m. Tuesday-Saturday and 6-10 p.m. Sundays. General admission is $20. The attraction is wheelchair accessible. Parental discretion is advised. For tickets or information: screamsinthepark.com; (847) 868-9279.
Fear City Chicago Apocalypse and Hades Haunted House, 8240 N. Austin Ave., Morton Grove, Oct. 19-21, 25-31. Hours are 7:30-11 p.m. Sunday-Thursday; 7:30 p.m.-midnight Fridays and Saturdays. Recommended for ages 12 and up. $25 per haunt; $35 for both haunts; $10 VIP Fast Pass; free VIP upgrade with a U.S. military ID. Visit www.FearCityChicago.com.
Asylum Xperiment Haunted Attractions, Thursdays through Sundays through Oct. 28 plus Oct. 31. Housed in the Odeum Expo Center, this event offers three chilling experiences in one location. Recommended for older kids and adults. $25. 1033 N. Villa Ave., Villa Park, (630) 941-9292; asylumxperiment.com.
Dream Reapers Haunted House, Oct. 19-21, 25-31. Traditional haunting meets high-tech animatronics, complete with scents based on room themes. $20. Recommended for older kids and adults. 1945 Cornell Ave., Melrose Park, dreamreapers.com.
Statesville Haunted Prison and City of the Dead, Thursdays through Sundays through Nov. 3 plus Oct. 30-31. One of the highlights of the haunted house circuit, Statesville employs more than 150 actors to scare visitors as they wend their way through 40 haunting rooms. $30. Kids must be 11 or older; 11- to 15-year-olds must be accompanied by a legal guardian. 17250 S. Weber Road, Crest Hill, (877) 722-7332; statesvillehauntedprison.com.
“Fright Light,” The Halloween-themed laser show, suitable for all ages, will be presented at 9 p.m. Fridays and Saturdays, through Oct. 28, at the Cernan Earth and Space Center at Triton College, 2000 Fifth Ave., River Grove. The music playlist includes “Monster Mash,” “Ghostbusters” and “The Addams Family” theme song. $10; $5 for children and seniors. Call (708) 583-3100 or visit www.triton.edu/cernan.
Howl-O-Ween Extravaganza Concert with a Cause and Costume Ball featuring live music by Tributosaurus, 7-11:30 p.m. Oct. 20 at The Nineteenth Century Club, 178 Forest Ave., Oak Park. Standard tickets $75 (includes entry to event, food, beer/wine, Halloween services (fortune teller, tarot card reader, photo booth, face painting) and swag bag; VIP package $125. Proceeds benefit West Suburban PADS’ Support Center and the Emergency Shelter Program. Visit www.westsuburbanpads.org.
Theatre organist David Rhodes will play accompaniment to the 1922 silent film “Nosferatu: A Symphony of Horror” at 7:30 p.m. Oct. 31 at Grace Episcopal Church, 924 Lake St., Oak Park. Admission: $20; $10 for those in costume. Call (708) 386-8036 or visit www.graceoakpark.org.
Halloween Fun Night with games, crafts, stories, and refreshments will be presented in a family-friendly atmosphere at 6 p.m. Oct. 27 at the Oak Park Dole Branch Library, 255 Augusta St., Oak Park. Costumes encouraged. Best for ages 4-10 with an adult. Register online at www.oppl.org/events/calendar or call (708) 386-9032 beginning Oct. 12.
“How to Train Your Dragon” is the centerpiece of family Halloween festivities at York Theatre, 150 York St., Elmhurst, and Tivoli Theatre, 5021 Highland Ave., Downers Grove. The screening starts at 9:30 a.m. Oct. 27 at the York and will be followed by trick-or-treating. The Tivoli invites filmgoers to come in costume for the pre-screening costume contest at 9 a.m.; show starts at 11 a.m. Free. Classiccinemas.com.
The Chicago Botanic Garden will host “Trains, Tricks & Treats” from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Oct. 20-21 at 1000 Lake Cook Road, Glencoe. The Model Railroad Garden will be decorated with spider webs, spiders, ghosts, goblins and pumpkins, and visitors are encouraged to come in costume and collect treats. $5 for adults; $3 for children ages 3-12; parking is $20 per car. Oct. 26-28: HallowFest: A Garden of Good ... and Evil. Hours are 6-9 p.m. Friday and Saturday; 4-7 p.m. Sunday. Visitors decide if they want to take the “spooky” or “friendly” paths. $17 in advance; $20 at the door; parking is $20 per car. Call (847) 835-8215 or visit www.chicagobotanic.org.
Halloween Magic, featuring The Magic Dentist, Dr. Mark Kaschube, will be presented at 2 p.m. Oct. 30 at the Rosemont Theatre, 5400 N. River Rd., Rosemont. Admission $20; $10 for children ages 12 and younger; $30 VIP tickets include a backstage meet-and-greet. Tickets are available at ticketmaster.com or (800) 745-3000.
Shedd Aquarium, Spooky Seas 6:30 p.m. Oct. 26-9 a.m. Oct. 27. Families can sleep over or not during the Shedd’s annual Halloween celebration with animal encounters and dancing to a live DJ. Children must be 5 to sleep over. Overnight, $75 per person; evening only, $35 per person. 1200 S. Lake Shore Drive, (312) 939-2438; sheddaquarium.org.
Boo! at the Zoo: Oct. 29-30. Brookfield Zoo, First Avenue between Ogden Avenue and 31stSt., Brookfield. Costume parades, professional pumpkin-carving demonstrations, games and crafts, Zoo Chats and haunted hayrides. Call (708) 688-8000; czs.org.
Six Flags Great America Frightfest offers four new attractions — Wicked Woods, Manslaughter Manor, the Dead Line and Fright Club (which expands Fright Fest into Hurricane Harbor and is rated NC-17). Running from 5 to 11 p.m. Fridays, 11 a.m. to 11 p.m. Saturdays, 11 a.m. to 9 p.m. Sundays Oct. 19-21 and 26-28 as well as 6 to 10 p.m. Oct. 25, the fest is child friendly until 3 p.m. on weekends. Adults, $61.99; kids less than 48 inches, $41.99 ($46.99, $30.99 online). Interstate 94 and Grand Avenue, Gurnee, (847) 249-4636; sixflags.com/greatamerica.
Navy Pier’s Really Big Halloween Party, Oct. 19-21, 26-28 plus Oct. 31. This mostly free event (some activities may have a fee) offers a petting zoo and hayrides, a dance party after 5 p.m., nightly fire-spinning shows, trick-or-treating on select dates (visit website) and a costume party on Oct. 27. 600 E. Grand Ave., (312) 595-7437; navypier.com.