Winchester Mystery House Unveils a ‘Mystic Midway’

The storied San Jose structure's Halloweentime event contains delights aplenty.

Winchester Mystery House/Dennis Hearne

IT CAN BE NOON, on an especially sunny San Jose day, and everyone nearby, out on the street, can be in sunglasses and shorts, and yet... It feels like October. There's an aura in the air that seems slightly supernatural. And that mansion, over there, the one with the Victorian roots, the weird staircases, the doors leading to walls, and a story that out-stories just about every other story attached to a structure in the Golden State? Well, it wears its eternal-seeming air of mysticism quite regally. We're speaking, of course, in soft, seance-like tones, about the one and only...

WINCHESTER MYSTERY HOUSE, the grand doyenne of spooky California casas. It's a spot that holds year-round tours of the fascinating and slightly chilly sort, but come the haunting season, the events get a little more ghouly, and little more grand, even, and they definitely bring the Mystic touch. And one series of happenings certainly will, over 16 atmospheric nights, when The Mystic Midway arrives at Sarah Winchester's famous abode. What's...

THE MYSTIC MIDWAY? It's an engaging pop-up event rife with entertainment, craft-making demonstrations, the telling of fortunes, classic carnival-style games, and, yes, vittles and beverages to keep your own personal spirit in a robust state. Think old-timey spookiness, with modern dash, and think of the sort of delights you might come across if you peeked inside a striped circus tent, only to see all sorts of activities and diversions of the most lightly macabre sorts. Are the famous...

CANDLELIGHT TOURS... also happening, concurrently, at the mega-room'd mansion nearby? Indeed. Do you need to experience this Mystic Midway with your own wondering senses, while calling upon the Winchester in the skin-tingling month of October? Best conjure the dates now, before pointing your favorite broom in the direction of San Jose.

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