13 spooky best bets for Halloween fun: Elfman and Eilish, haunts, kids’ stuff and more

A pumpkin snowman with spindly arms stands beside a street sign and in front of spooky fog.
The immersive Halloween attraction Los Angeles Haunted Hayride has returned to Griffith Park.
(Los Angeles Haunted Hayride)

Looking for Halloween fun?

The scary season is already in full swing at the big four local amusement parks — Disneyland Resort, Universal Studios, Six Flags and Knott’s Berry Farm. But there are other options, including haunts, a hayride, movies and more, plus a half-dozen family friendly outings for the wee ones. Read on ... if you dare. Before you go, remember to call or check online for reservation requirements and other COVID-19 protocols.

Terrifying tableaux

Bundle up! The Los Angeles Haunted Hayride has returned to Griffith Park, with immersive environments, creepy costumed characters, live entertainment and more. Not recommended for children 12 and younger. Griffith Park, 4730 Crystal Springs Drive, L.A. Through Oct. 31 (closed Oct. 18-19). $29 and up; advance timed-entry tickets required.

For the record:

8:50 a.m. Oct. 16, 2021An earlier version of this article said the Los Angeles Opera screenings of the horror movie “Get Out” would be at the Dorothy Chandler Pavilion. The screenings will be at the Theatre at Ace Hotel.

Zombie Joe’s Underground Theatre Group has re-mounted its long-running haunted theater attraction “Urban Death Tour of Terror.” But be warned: This one features graphic content including full nudity and is strictly for ages 17 and older (though a kid-friendly version is being offered for ages 8 and older, 7 p.m. Saturdays and Oct. 31). ZJU Theatre, 4850 Lankershim Blvd., North Hollywood. 8, 9, 10, 10:45 and 11:30 p.m. Oct. 15-16, 22-23, 29-31 and Nov. 1. $20, $25.


Zombie Joe’s Underground Theatre Group will also stage two versions of the immersive walk-thru theater attraction “The Cunningham House of Horrors”: one for ages 8 and older (5 to 7 p.m. Oct. 27-28) and one for ages 17 and older (8 to 11 p.m.). The Cunningham Home, 29724 Castlebury Place, Castaic. $15, $20; no advance sales; tickets available at the door only.

Inspired by ‘Sleep No More,’ haunted horror plays ‘Delusion’ and ‘Creep L.A.’ are now influencing the immersive entertainment movement.

Tickets to Maverick Theater’s annual production of “Night of the Living Dead,” a favorite of local audiences for many a season, are nearly gone. But it’s worth a shot to catch this absolutely bonkers stage adaptation of George A. Romero’s low-budget 1968 zombie thriller. Maverick Theater, 110 E. Walnut Ave., Fullerton. 9 p.m. Oct. 23 and 30. $29.

Scary movies

Composer and rocker Danny Elfman reprises his role as the singing voice of Jack Skellington, joined by pop wunderkind Billie Eilish as Sally, as part of “Tim Burton’s The Nightmare Before Christmas in Concert,” a live celebration of the stop-motion animated 1993 musical fantasy tale. The festivities also include a costume contest plus trick-or-treating inside the venue. Banc of California Stadium, Exposition Park, 3939 S. Figueroa St., L.A. 8 p.m. Oct. 29 — sold out, but check secondary market sites — and 6:30 p.m. Oct. 31 (still plenty of good seats available). $49-$250

A diptych of portraits of Danny Elfman and Billie Eilish
Danny Elfman and Billie Eilish will appear as part of “Tim Burton’s The Nightmare Before Christmas in Concert.”
(Brian van der Brug / Los Angeles Times; Robert Gauthier / Los Angeles Times)

Los Angeles Opera presents three screenings of Jordan Peele’s allegorical 2017 horror fable “Get Out” with live orchestra, with the film’s composer Michael Abels on hand to conduct his score. Daniel Kaluuya and Allison Williams star. The Theatre at Ace Hotel, 929 S. Broadway., downtown L.A. 8 p.m. Oct. 29-31. $25-$109.

And just across the street on Halloween night, the Los Angeles Philharmonic will offer a screening of the 1920 silent-era adaptation of Robert Louis Stevenson’s 19th century terror tale “Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde” starring John Barrymore, with live organ accompaniment by Clark Wilson. Walt Disney Concert Hall, 111 S Grand Ave., downtown L.A. 7:30 p.m. Oct. 31. $34-$67.

Family-friendly fun

The immersive outdoor experience Nights of the Jack is back with more bedazzled jack-o’-lanterns than you can shake a stick at, plus pumpkin-carving demos, food trucks and a “Spookeasy” where adults can enjoy an adult beverage. King Gillette Ranch, 26800 Mulholland Highway, Calabasas. 6 to 10 p.m. through Oct. 31 (closed Oct. 18-19). $34.99 and up; children 2 and younger, free; advance timed-entry tickets required.

Brightly colored jack-o'-lanterns
The family friendly Halloween event Nights of the Jack is back in Calabasas.
(Line 8 Photography)

A straw maze, bounce houses, super slides and a petting zoo are just some of the kid-friendly offerings to be found at Mr. Bones Pumpkin Patch, West L.A. College, 10100 Jefferson Blvd., Culver City. 9 a.m. to 9 p.m. through Oct. 31. $5 and up; advance purchase recommended.

It’s all fun and games at Haunt o’ Ween, a family friendly playground with immersive environments, a pumpkin patch, trick-or-treating, arts and crafts and a 40-foot carousel. Westfield Promenade, 6100 Topanga Canyon Blvd., Woodland Hills. 5 to 11:30 p.m. Wednesdays-Sundays through Oct. 31. $35 per person; children younger than 2, free; tickets available on site.

“Spooky Science Featuring the Monster Academy” is at both Discovery Cube locations, with Halloween-themed interactive exhibits, hands-on activities and more. Discovery Cube Los Angeles, 11800 Foothill Blvd., Sylmar; Discovery Cube Orange County, 2500 N. Main St., Santa Ana. Thursdays-Sundays through Oct. 31. $13.95-$19.95; advance timed entry tickets required.

Boonion Station, a kid-friendly daytime event on Union Station’s South Patio, will feature trick-or-treating, dance parties, costume contests, face painting and more. Union Station, 800 N. Alameda St., downtown L.A. 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. Oct. 30-31. Free; advance reservations required; walk-ins welcomed on a first-come, first-served basis.

No strings attached? As if! The colorful puppets of the beloved local institution Bob Baker Marionette Theater will caper and cavort as part of the “Bob Baker Halloween Spook’tacular.” One Colorado, Old Pasadena, 41 Hugus Alley, Pasadena. 4:30 p.m. Oct. 28. Free with registration.