Spooky Fall Fun: Festivals, haunted places, music and more


Fall has arrived and that means plenty of thrills and chills, whether you’re looking to have the pants scared off you or just enjoy some outdoor art events. Check out our guide to some of October’s offerings around Intown.

Oakland Cemetery
On Sunday, Oct. 1 from noon to 6 p.m. Oakland Cemetery hosts the 39th annual Sunday in the Park fall festival. The free event will feature exhibits, Victorian costume contest, living history demonstrations, live performances, kid’s crafts, an artist market, and much more. On Oct. 14, the annual Run Like Hell 5K will be held, and runners (don’t forget your costumes!) can sign up at itsyourrace.com. The acclaimed Capturing the Spirit of Oakland Halloween Tours rounds out the month, with tours held over two weekends on Oct. 20-22 and Oct. 26-29. As one of the only opportunities to visit Oakland Cemetery after dark, Capturing the Spirit resurrects the stories of Oakland residents through historic reenactment. Ticket information, is available at oaklandcemetery.com.

The classic haunted house is open all month long at 6624 Dawson Boulevard in Norcross. Named one of the scariest haunted houses in the world year after year, it’s worth the trip outside the perimeter for some thrills and chills. The fear-fest is divided into zones including “Primal Scream” and “Mr. Grendel’s Fun House of Horrors,” where visitors wear 3D glasses. Netherworld has announced it will leave Norcross for a new location in Stone Mountain in 2018. Find out more at fearworld.com.

Atlanta Botanical Garden
The annual “Scarecrows in the Garden” returns starting Oct. 4 with  dozens of wild and crazy characters perched throughout the Midtown site. They’re all the creative handiwork of area schools, businesses, organizations and individuals. On Thursday evenings from 5 to 9 p.m., check them out by flashlight during Fest-of-Ale while enjoying fall-themed craft beers and live music. For more information, visit atlantabg.org.

Fall Festival on Ponce
The ninth annual event returns to Olmsted Linear Park on Oct. 14 from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. and Oct. 15 from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. with a giant artists market, children’s area, food trucks, live music and more. For more information, visit festivalonponce.com.

The public art festival returns to the streets of Downtown Oct. 14-21. All events are free and open to the public. There will be interactive art installations, music and dance performances, murals, spoken word poets, panel discussions, an eclectic block party, and much more. For the complete schedule of events, visit elevateatlart.com.

Oakhurst Porchfest
Local musicians will take over the front porches and yards of homes in the Decatur neighborhood on Oct. 14 from noon to 7 p.m. for an afternoon of concerts and community. Visit oakhurstporchfest.org for the schedule.

Grant Park Halloween Lantern Parade
The Grant Park Conservancy will host this stroll through the historic park on Oct. 20 starting at 8 p.m. There will be music, food trucks, and adult beverages. The Krewe of the Grateful Gluttons, Wasted Potential Brass Band and the Black Sheep Ensemble will lead the parade. For more information, visit gpconservancy.org.

Little 5 Points Halloween Festival and Parade
The annual tradition will see thousands congregate in L5P on Oct. 21 to enjoy the artists market, food, drinks, live entertainment and one of the biggest Halloween parades in the South. The parade begins at 4 p.m. Costumes are encouraged. For more information, visit l5phalloween.com.

Children’s Museum of Atlanta
Trick-or-Treat at the Museum will be held Oct. 21 for one night only as the Downtown attraction transforms into a spooky funhouse. Details at childrensmuseumatlanta.org.

Fox Theatre Ghost Tours
The Fabulous Fox opens its doors for the fifth annual ghost tours Oct. 25-29. Spooks and scares will be around every shadowy corner as guides recount supernatural tales collected from the historic theatre’s staff and contractors over the years. Tours last for one hour and tickets are $30 per person at foxtheatre.org. The tour isn’t recommended for children under 10 and those 6 and under not permitted.

Halloween Night on Callanwolde Mountain
A night of family fun on Oct. 27 for both kids and adults featuring trick-or-treating, costume contest, movie screenings, music and building fun with the LEGOLand Discovery Center. Tickets are $5 in advance or $10 at the door. For more information, visit callanwolde.org.

A Social Mess
This Halloween party will take over Buckhead Theatre on Oct. 28 from 9 p.m. until 2:30 a.m. for a night of DJs, live music, costume contests, food and adult beverages. To purchase tickets, visit asocialmess.com.  Early purchase is recommended as the event often sells out. Prices start at $15 but will increase closer to the event date. Attendees must be 21 years of age or older.

Ponce City Market
Head to the Old Fourth Ward for the “Day of the Dead on The Roof” on Oct. 28 at Skyline Park – a 21+ Halloween party – and Trick-or-Treating for kis on Oct. 31. A full lineup of events is available at poncecitymarket.com.

Georgia Aquarium
The Downtown attraction is hosting Halloween events all month long, including “Graveyard Smash: A Monstrous Spook-tacular” on Saturdays and Sundays with Dracula, Igor, Frankenstein and his bride and friends; “Something Wicked This Way Comes,” a cocktail party for adults on Oct. 27; and Trick-or-Treat for kids on Oct. 28. Visit georgiaaquarium.org for tickets and details.

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