If words like macabre, terror, horror and haunted give you thrills and chills … If you love witches, zombies, goblins and ghouls … then this month is made for you. Check out this monster offering of October events.
BOO AT THE ZOO
It’s Boo at the Zoo time at the Oglebay Good Zoo, Friday-Sunday, Oct. 11-Oct. 27! Dress up in your favorite costume and visit the zoo for its annual fall fundraiser. There will be trick-or-treat stations, a spooky train ride, select zoo animals and a Halloween-themed laser light show. Event proceeds benefit the care and conservation of Good Zoo animals. For times and admission rates, call 304-243-4100 or visit the website.
HELL ON EARTH
A cool shudder trickles down your spine. Glancing around nervously, you see old bloody tools scattered around from behind layers of dust, seemingly penetrating your very being. Cold, hesitant light streams in through a cracked window, casting eerie shadows on the walls. As you walk forward, you can’t help but feel that someone is following you. Whirling around, you see nothing but the empty hallway, the vast darkness and the safety you left behind. “Turn back,” you say to yourself, but you swallow a nervous whimper and continue into the dark bowels of Infernum In Terra. … You’re being drawn in, drowned in slumbering evil, there is no escape. … The Infernum in Terra Wheeling’s newest haunted attraction is now open at 4302 Jacob St. in Wheeling. For more details, read Weelunk’s story or visit the attraction’s website.
PANIC AT THE PENITENTIARY
The West Virginia Penitentiary is especially scary this time of year with a multitude of frights throughout the month!
• Dungeon of Horrors
Over 10,000 people each year are introduced to one of the scariest places behind bars! Experience the fright of being locked in a cell, the fear of being lost in a maze and the terror of an eerie walk through the dungeon of horrors. Will you manage to keep up with your group and not get separated? Do you have what it takes to make it through? Don’t worry, our actors will be there to help you along.
• The North Walk
The North Walk will take you through the oldest part of the former West Virginia Penitentiary. It is also known as the area with the most paranormal activity, a place where murders, violence and brutality were common everyday occurrences. This was where the most dangerous inmates were housed, the maximum-security area, North Hall. The inmates called it The Alamo. You will enter this part of the prison through the “Administration Building” and the “wheel” — these areas have been closed to the public for years and only opened for the Haunted House season. The North Walk is NOT an attraction, but a flashlight tour of an area that was once considered one of the bloodiest institutions in the nation.
• Zombie Paintball
Zombies are loose on the South Yard, and it’s up to you to save us all! Grab one of the stationary paintball guns and do your best with a live, unarmed zombie and stationary targets. The paintball guns that are approved for this event are mounted to a table and can only be swiveled enough to aim and shoot at the designated targets. You will not engage in combat and will not be shot by paintballs.
• Kid’s Night, 6-8 p.m., Monday, Oct. 28
Children 12 and under are invited to the Moundsville Center (located through the North Wagon Gate) for Kid’s Night, a trick-or-treat style event, where children will gather goodies from several tables, play games, take pictures on a fire truck, get their faces painted and have fun!
• Family Night, 6-8 p.m. Tuesday, Oct. 29
The penitentiary will welcome families with children ages 7 -12 for “Lil Dungeon of Horrors” from 6-8 p.m. The scaled-down version of the haunted house is specifically designed for younger children who might not be ready for the “full” dungeon.
• Halloween Bash, 8-11 p.m. Thursday, Oct. 31
Your ticket purchase will take you through the prison’s dark halls and into a section of the facility that confined some of the most depraved inmates ever hidden from the public. There will be games, live entertainment, music, a costume contest, raffles, refreshments, dancing and, of course, the prison itself. Costumes are encouraged.
For more details, send an email to email@example.com or call 304-845-6200.
SPIRITS FROM THE PAST
Spirits From the Past will be floating around West Virginia Independence Hall Foundation beginning at 7 p.m. on Saturday, Oct. 19. Costumed actors portraying “spirits” from Wheeling history will dramatically recount true events that have occurred in the city over the years. As is fitting for the Halloween season, the tales will include a murder, a disaster, reported hauntings and a robbery (with some humorous details).
Each of the four presentations (one on each floor of the building) will be about 10-15 minutes long:
• The spirit of Archibald Campbell, the editor of the Intelligencer newspaper (portrayed by Tim Thompson), will describe the horrific Wheeling Wharf explosion of 1853.
• Robert “Doc” Poole (portrayed by Walt Warren) will explain the gruesome murder of Adam Buch.
• Weird occurrences said to have happened around Tunnel Green will be recounted by “Annie Greenteeth” (portrayed by Judi Hendrickson).
• The spirits of two unknown thieves, (portrayed by Dave Clutter and Dave Barnett), will describe the attempted robbery of more than $1 million from the Custom House safe during the Civil War.
Seating will be provided at each location, and light refreshments will be served after the event. The evening is a fundraiser for the WVIH Foundation. The program is not recommended for children 12 and under. Admission is $10 per person, and reservations by Oct. 15 are strongly suggested. For reservations, call Judi Hendrickson at 304-232-5903. West Virginia Independence Hall is located at 1528 Market St., Wheeling.
THE HALL — PLACE OF THE SKULL
From 11 a.m. to 2 p.m., at Halloween at the Hall — West Virginia Independence Hall, that is — the hosts are dying for you to join them for a “Wheeling, Place of the Skull” Halloween party. Wear your costumes and enjoy an afternoon of crafts and treats. Free.
RUN FOR YOUR LIFE!
The Wheeling Symphony Auxiliary in support of the Wheeling Symphony Society has organized the Run For Your Life 5k, Saturday, Oct. 19, at Wheeling Heritage Port. This 5K run/walk will provide spooky fun for all. Costumes are encouraged. Check-in opens at 8 a.m. There will be an 8:30 a.m. Mini Monster Dash for kids, and the 5K begins at 9 a.m. Register here. $35 pre-registration, $45 day of the race. The Mini Monster Dash for kids 10 and under is free.
INTO THE SHADOWS
Oglebay Institute will host the fourth annual Shadows Ball — a night of thrills, chills, sideshow, burlesque, costumes and rock-n-roll, 7 p.m.-midnight, Saturday, Oct. 19, at the Stifel Fine Arts Center, one of Wheeling’s grand, historic mansions. Back by popular demand, Pittsburgh’s Kabarett Vulgare returns to entertain guests with a variety of sideshow and burlesque acts. The ever-blossoming, Pittsburgh-based psychedelic jam/funk/rock band, Habitat, will perform throughout the evening, and the dance floor will be open. This year’s Shadows Ball entertainment lineup also includes an eerie puppet show — “The Circus Macabre” — created by local actor, artist and playwright Zachary Michael. Guests will also view lifelike SFX creature creations from Bixby Studios, a Morgantown-based creative production company that specializes in building props for the haunt industry. In addition to entertainment, guests at the Shadows Ball will enjoy a buffet of food, drinks and a judged costume competition with prizes. Tickets are $35 per person. VIP tickets are $45 and include reserved seating for the sideshows and puppet shows. Costumes required for entry. Open to ages 18 and older only. No entry without appropriate ID. Tickets can be purchased at www.OIonline.com or by calling 304-242-7700.
A TERROR-IFIC TIME
Strange things are happening at the J.B. Martin Recreation Center in St. Clairsville. The eighth annual Harmony House Monster Bash offers a spooktacular night of screams, as well as food, beer and soft drinks, at 7 p.m. Saturday, Oct. 19. There will be a DJ, photo booth fun, 50/50 raffle and auctions. The J.B. Martin Rec Center is located at 102 Fair St., St Clairsville.
BE AN ODDBALL
Hosted by Crittenton Services and Wheeling Island Hotel-Casino-Racetrack, the Odd Ball is a Halloween-themed, haunting bash and a celebration of all things strange! Set for 8-11 p.m. Friday, Oct. 25, the Odd Ball will include hearty hors d’oeuvres, a signature drink and cash bar, specialty entertainment and a lively reverse raffle with a Wheeling Island staycation as the grand prize. Shake your bones on the dance floor to the Easystreet Band. Costumes are optional, but fun is guaranteed! Tickets are $35 and can be purchased here or by calling 304-242-7060 ext. 134. Must be 21 years or older to attend.
THE WITCH’S BREW
Prepare to be scared at The Witch’s Brew, 7 p.m. Friday, Oct. 25, at West Virginia Northern Community College. The WVNCC Foundation and Friends of the College spooktacular evening will include food stations from the Culinary Cauldron (crafted by WVNCC culinary arts students) with freakishly scary eats and desserts along with ghoulish signature cocktails. Guests an enjoy live music by Hit Play and a show by master magician/illusionist Aedryan Methyus. Join in the frighteningly good fun with your creative costume! (Costumes not required.) Tickets online, by phone 304-214-8906 or via email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
BIG PRIZES FOR BEST COSTUMES
River City Restaurant’s annual Halloween Costume Party kicks off at 9 p.m. Friday, Oct. 25. Best costume grand prize is a trip to Nashville, with three nights at the Sheratan Grand Nashville Downtown plus admission to a Nashville attraction. More than 12 additional prizes.
RETURN OF MONSTERS’ BALL
Attention all ghouls and goblins! You are cordially invited to the Return of Monsters’ Ball, 9 p.m. Saturday, Oct. 26, at Vagabond Kitchen. The party kicks off with spooky jams, complimentary snacks, and special Halloween-themed drink and food menus. Sport your most terrifying attire and enter the costume contest — winners will receive $100 gift cards for Vagabond or Hot Rod Tattooing! Costume categories include: punniest; best duo or group; best Wheeling themed; WTF!?!; most likely to get arrested; baddest ass overall. A live DJ will be spinning the spooky tunes. Advance tickets are $10, or $5 with costume. Admission the evening of the event is $14, or $7 with costume. Tickets available at Brown Paper Tickets.
OH, THE HORROR!
The Strand Theatre in Moundsville will host a showing of The Rocky Horror Picture Show at 9 p.m. Saturday, Oct. 26. Allowable props include newspapers, flashlights, rubber gloves, noisemakers, party hats, toilet paper, playing cards, bells and small squirt guns. (No food and no open flames.) Admission is $15, and an additional $5 will get you a bag of props for an all-on audience participation experience. Must be 17 years old to attend and must have valid ID.
Celebrate Halloween at the Museum, 2-9:30 p.m. Saturday, Oct. 26, at the Weirton Area Museum & Cultural Center. Enjoy the Creepy Art Show and Macabre Maker’s Market on the first floor; a fun and kid-friendly one-act play by members of the Ashley Marie Performing Arts Center at 4 p.m. on the second floor; and adaptations of tales by Edgar Allan Poe by The Ohio Valley Cloak & Dagger Company at 7 p.m. on the second floor. There will be children’s activities — including a free make-your-own-monster collage station — and lots of local historical exhibits. Light refreshments and candy will also be available. Join the fun in your favorite costume.
The third annual Bike Wheeling Halloween Ride is set for 6-9 p.m. Thursday, Oct. 31, winding its way through the city of Wheeling. The ride starts at the north end of Wheeling’s Historic Centre Market and takes you on a ride to Wheeling’s newest haunted house, Infernum In Terra haunted attraction. Then ride back to the Centre Market to Brew Keepers for some Halloween festivities. Your donation of $26 will include a VIP ticket into the haunted house ($20 value), a Brew Keepers commemorative pint glass ($5 value), one draft of your choice at the completion of the ride ($5 value), appetizers and a ticket to win raffle prizes! A food truck will be parked at Brew Keepers for some grub after the ride.
The 19th Hole’s annual Halloween Party takes place at 6 p.m. on Halloween, Thursday, Oct. 31. Music, costumes, drinks and prizes! Eli Lambie kicks off the party, singing through happy hour from 6-8 p.m., followed by the Tim Ullom Band from 8:30-11:30 p.m. Prizes to be awarded for best male and best female costume.