The scariest part of Halloween as an adult is not having plans. Nobody wants to be stuck at home with three-foot-tall Spidermen banging on the door for Twix bars. In Southern California, Halloween is now a weeks-long event that stretches from October almost through Thanksgiving. Here’s what to do if you—yikes—still haven’t crafted your trick-or-treat plans.
Imagine a haunted house with a graduate degree in sc-sc-scary and you get the idea of Delusion, a supremely intelligent—and downright terrifying—interactive ghost mansion experience at the Phillips Mansion, an actual 1875 estate in Pomona. This year’s immersive storyline is based on 1970s cults, where the visitors (that’s you) get to play deprogrammer to a creepy crowd of saucer-eyed Jonestown types. Tickets begin at $90, though you can upgrade to VIP tickets that grant access to the second floor, and presumably the top-shelf cauldron of Kool-Aid.
Disney Hall Devilishness
Seats are still available (if you dare) for Walt Disney Concert Hall’s October 31 screening of the 1920 silent film The Cabinet of Dr. Caligari, about an asylum director with a bit of a murder habit. Organist Clark Wilson plays live inside the Gehry building for a night of elegant, vintage chills.
Frankenstein at the Ace
Even on a regular week, the Theatre at the Ace Hotel is spooky enough with its melting-wax interiors and mausoleum-style mood lighting. This Halloween week, the LA Opera ups the tension (Oct 28 and 29) with live vocal performances to accompany the greatest of all horror films, Frankenstein, starring Boris Karloff (1931). Bring someone you love but keep your open flames at home, Igor.
Hay, Wanna Ride?
This Sunday is that last chance to ride the most iconic of all L.A. hayrides—yep, the Haunted one in Griffith Park. Celebrating its 14th year, the latest version has a (S)Laughterhouse maze, a Midnight Mortuary, and enough strolling zombies to make whoever you’re with want to snuggle your arm like an undead koala. Tickets are selling fast but still available every night this week through Halloween. Prices begin at $29 and go to a frightful $100+ for Platinum access.
Reign of Terror
It began as a homemade haunted house, but today, Reign of Terror in Thousand Oaks is a Hollywood-worthy horror experience for even the most jaded Halloween connoisseur. Billed as the largest indoor walk-through haunted house attraction in Southern California, the attraction has been continuously operating since 1999 and was completely updated for 2022. It features more than 135 custom rooms in 10 different, interconnected “haunt-themed” sections on over 28,000 square feet. As they say in their spooky come-on: “We are packed with terrifying scenes, swarms of living and mechanical monstrous characters, amazing scary props, and countless spectacular special effects. All designed to give you a thrilling and fun time.” Sounds like a night of ghastly fun. Regular admission is $30, though there are all kinds of options, including lights on (for $5 cash), lights off (with one glowstick per group), and immediate access to cut the lines. Fridays and Saturdays through November 4; and October 23, 30, and 31