From scream-worthy to family-friendly, the South’s Halloween celebrations offer a wealth of ways to get your fright on.
Raleigh Zombie Walk 2016
Raleigh, North Carolina
On Saturday, hordes of zombies take over North Carolina’s capital during the Raleigh Zombie Walk 2016. Join the masses, and help turn designated victims—martyrs marked with red tape—into members of the walking dead. Celebrate your conquests at the London Bridge Pub’s after party.
Dracula: Ballet with a Bite
Columbia, South Carolina
Based on the novel by Bram Stoker, this annual ballet revives Count Dracula’s reign of terror Thursday through Saturday at Koger Center for the Arts, Watch the Transylvania tale on stage, or join the Count at a fundraising gala for the Columbia City Ballet after Friday’s show. If you go to Saturday’s performance, dress up; the costume contest is to die for.
Radio 105.7’s Saints & Sinners Ball
Angels and devils, Jekylls and Hydes, prepare to put your best costumed foot forward. On Saturday, Radio 105.7 serves up its annual Halloween bash at Park Tavern. Monster mash the night away while enjoying themed drinks and live music from Foals, Bear Hands, and Kiev.
Wild Rumpus Parade & Spectacle
Celebrate the day of the dead all weekend long. The revelry starts Thursday with the Wild Rumpus Halloween Kick off Party at Creature Comforts Brewery. Friday brings a family-friendly Monster Mash at the Foundry, and Saturday, an evening parade through downtown Athens. After the parade, head to the Georgia Theatre for an 18-plus after party. Order your tickets for all events online.
Salemtown Halloween Block Party
The big draw of this Saturday event is the costume contests: Literally everyone—parents, kids, pets—can compete. Food trucks, face painting, live music, and nearly limitless trick-or-treating (‘til the candy runs out) make this block party fun for the whole family.
Nightmare on the Beach: Dia de los Muertos
Proceeds from this Saturday event go to Little Lighthouse Foundation, which supports children and families in South Florida facing medical, educational, and financial hardships. Tickets include a premium open bar (Think Patron, Ultimat vodka, and Pyrat rum.) and samples from South Florida’s best restaurants and caterers. Over 21 only, please.
Mickey’s Not-So-Scary Halloween
On Thursday, don your favorite costume to trick-or-treat with Mickey and at Mickey’s Not-So-Scary Halloween in Disney’s Magic Kingdom. The after-dark event offers a decidedly happy haunting, with plenty of sweets and fun for all ages. Close the evening with a spectacular fireworks show.
Boo at the Zoo
Halloween weekend finishes out Birmingham Zoo’s Boo at the Zoo, a makeshift theme park of spooky attractions. This year the event features larger-than-life Bug-A-BOO exhibits—a.k.a. animatronic bugs. Slip down the Spider Slide, ride on the Eerie Express Train, or set your heart racing on ghost rollers. Show off your costume while trick-or-treating, then head to the Monster Mash dance party to sweat off some that candy.
Terror on the Coast
Hardcore Halloweeners, get ready to experience horror movie magic. This gruesome haunted house stages a slaughterhouse and autopsy room, complete with Academy Award–winning props. Enter if you dare.
Halloween New Orleans
New Orleans, Louisiana
This four-day celebration benefits Project Lazarus, a healthcare home that supports people living with HIV/AIDS. The party starts Thursday with the Lazarus Ball, a black-tie event with a silent auction at Il Mercato. Friday brings a neon dance party at Civic Theatre, and Saturday, a live DJ at Contemporary Arts Center. Spend Sunday cruising on the Paddlewheeler Creole Queen, which serves up a floating brunch dance party.