halloween activities

Horrified By Halloween's Early Start?

Disneyland has gone dark, SeaWorld is prepping Howl-O-Scream and costume shops are popping up around San Diego as fright-filled fun returns

Pumpkin spice lattes are back, the leaves are changing colors — on the West Coast, anyway — and candy corn is being shucked by your favorite retailers.

Is September too early for the sexy fireman costume or spooktacular timing? This frightening debate has been kicked off by the ever-encroaching Spirit Halloween pop-up season, when the costume retailer preys on the dead carcasses of retailers.

Aaron Brothers in Point Loma, we hardly knew ye. The death of Performance Bikes hit us hard. Macy's -- MACY'S at the Mission Valley mall, for god's sake! -- is now festooned with the all-too-familiar vinyl Spirit mega-sign. Somehow the death of Sears, this one in Chula Vista, is not so surprising. After all, both mall-anchor chains are well over 100 years old.

Sure, there are stores in National City, Encinitas and Escondido coming soon as well, set to open throughout September and October.

For store hours, you can visit Spirit Halloween's website here.

Halloween Time at Disneyland

You know, it's never a surprise when the Imagineers give the people what they want —even though many of us don't necessarily ask for it.

Just to the north of us, villains are taking over as "Halloween Time" returns to Disneyland Resort and Disney California Adventure Park now through Oct. 31.

The Haunted Mansion Holiday decor and Guardians of the Galaxy- Monsters After Dark ride are back after the parks were closed last season due to the pandemic.

Disney is making sure there are tricks and treats for the whole family to enjoy. The parks are offering greetings with characters in their Halloween attire, beloved seasonal decor like the Main Street Mickey Mouse jack-o'-lantern and yummy fall deserts.

Photos: Halloween is Creeping Up on Us, Is It Time to Get Into the Spooky Spirit?

You can also celebrate Día de los Muertos, Day of the Dead, in the Frontierland section of the resort through Nov. 2. The holiday honors loved ones that have passed away and embraces eternal connections within families.

After-park-hours, Disney California Adventure Park is hosting Oogie Boogie Bash, a Halloween party for guests of all ages.

On select nights in September and October, the park will sell separate tickets for this Halloween spooktacular which includes after-hours park access to treat trails, photo opportunities, attractions and entertainment.

For more information on Disney's spell-casting celebration, you can visit the park's website here.

SeaWorld's Howl-O-Scream

There's a new terror in town at SeaWorld and it's not a killer shark.

For the first time ever, Howl-O-Scream is transforming the SeaWorld San Diego park you once knew into something sinister.

Starting Sept. 17, nighttime guests will evade horrifying creatures as they rampage through scare zones and test fate in the house of horrors.

The 21+ crowd can quench their thirst for fear with cocktails, beer, and spirits at themed bars throughout the park. After grabbing a drink, you can Monster Mash your way to the steam-punk themed dance club, The Underground.

Howl-O-Scream is intended for a mature audience (ages 13+). It is a separately ticketed night event that is not included with regular SeaWorld park admission.

Before the tricks of Howl-O-Scream, SeaWorld has treats for the whole family.

SeaWorld Spooktacular is back for the 2021 season.

Photos: Horrified By Halloween's Early Start?

Families can explore decorated trails, eat ghoulish goodies and meet all sorts of colorful characters around the park.

SeaWorld Spooktacular is included with park admission on weekends from Sept. 18 through Oct. 31.

For more information on SeaWorld's Halloween offerings, you can visit their website here.

Legoland Brick-or-Treat

Legoland California Resort will be open after dark every Saturday in October — that's OCTOBER, for those of you keeping score at home — for Brick-or-Treat.

Rides will be running late into the night and the park is offering family friendly events like trick-or-treating, live entertainment, Halloween decor and more.

Eat, drink and be scary with seasonal food and beverages available for the whole family.

Dress in your ghoulish best for the annual costume contest parades at 3 p.m., 4 p.m., 5 p.m. and 6 p.m. Guests ages 12 and under have the opportunity to show off their Halloween costumes in the contest parade around Miniland U.S.A.

Judges will select one winner for each of the following categories: best homemade costume, best group costume and best LEGO costume.

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