Like any proper zombie, Halloween returns this year — even if it’s staggering a bit.
The pandemic altered traditional Halloween festivities in 2020 and canceled others that attracted big crowds, including parades in Alton and Edwardsville. This year, those parades are set to return.
“This year, we’re definitely excited to be back and relive this beloved tradition,” says Katie Haas, membership director for the Edwardsville/Glen Carbon Chamber of Commerce, which organizes the parade. “When I got here, it was described to me as the Macy’s Thanksgiving parade of Edwardsville. Now, after participating for three or four years, it definitely feels that way.”
Fright Fest at Six Flags St. Louis also returns in full force after the theme park pivoted last year with a scaled-back Hallowfest celebration. Among other attractions, the park has added a Creatures of the Corn Maze and brought back screenings of "The Rocky Horror Picture Show," accompanied by live actors.
“This is by far the most popular event we do at the park, and we know that our guests are as anxious as we are to get their scream on,” said park president Phil Liggett in a statement.
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St. Louis County Parks and Recreation brings back its popular adult egg hunt in Jefferson Barracks Park, usually held in the spring. But this time, it's a Halloween egg hunt, complete with costume contest and a chance to hunt for eggs by flashlight.
At the Magic House in Kirkwood, Halloween celebrations run all month, with outdoor activities such as a tricycle ride through a not-so-spooky Trick-or-Treat Town. Grant’s Farm brings back its wildly popular drive-thru Halloween event, with the addition of a daytime Fall Fest. And the Phantasmagoria theater group again will stage performances aboard the Riverboats at the Gateway Arch.
Organizers are sticking with pandemic protocols, so stay safe, use your braaaaains — and keep the zombies at bay.
When Through Nov. 6; hours vary • Where Creepyworld, 1400 South Old Highway 141, Fenton • How much $30; packages and upgrades available • More info scarefest.fearticket.com
This “screampark” features 13 themed areas and a haunted hayride, and it's nearly all outdoors. Creepyworld adds four new haunted attractions this year, including the "Tales of Terror Video Mapping Show," the Slaughter and Sons Funeral Home, the Pumpkin Barn and a Krampus Haunted House. Creepyworld also features a haunted hayride, five-minute escape rooms, a gift shop and photo ops.
Eureka Fear Farm
When 7 p.m.-midnight Fridays-Saturdays, through October • Where Brookdale Farms, 8004 Twin Rivers Road, Eureka • How much $25, cash only; no reservations required • More info brookdalefarmsinc.com
Take a ride on Farmer Bob’s Haunted Hayride, and get lost inside Red’s Corn Maze Massacre — there’s more than 100 acres of terror to explore. A corn maze and other family-friendly fall activities are available during the day.
When Through Nov. 6; hours vary • Where The Darkness, 1525 South Eighth Street • How much $28; packages and upgrades available • More info thedarkness.com
Now in its 28th year, the Darkness is a two-story haunted house that includes Terror Visions 3D, an Outdoor Scream Zone, a Monster Museum with five-minute escape rooms, a gift shop, horror arcades, photo ops and more. Guests can also visit the St. Louis Escape Rooms next door, which include a new Frankenstein room, as well as a black-lit, '80s-themed Silly Putter Mini Golf.
Lemp Brewery Haunted House
When Fridays-Saturdays and Oct. 31, through October • Where 3500 Lemp Avenue • How much $25; packages and upgrades available • More info lemphauntedhouse.com
The Lemp attraction wasn’t open last year so its owners could focus on Creepyworld and the Darkness, but the attraction has been renovated to fulfill all your worst nightmares. The haunted house is located on the grounds of the old Lemp family brewery and takes guests underground, past the old pipes and machinery and through musty tunnels.
Haunted Paintball Park
When 7-10 p.m. Fridays-Saturdays, through October • Where 3545 Douglas Road, Millstadt • How much $25 • More info hauntedpaintballpark.com
The Xtreme Paintball Park in Millstadt gets overrun with zombies, ghouls and other creatures during October, and you must protect yourself. Hop on the haunted hayride and walk along the haunted trail to continue your battle. Admission includes a rental gun and 200 paintballs.
Spirits of the Past
When 6-10 p.m. Oct. 16 • Where Historic Daniel Boone Home, 1868 Highway F, Defiance • How much $10-$12 • More info 636-798-2005; bit.ly/2021SpiritsOfThePast
Walk the paths of the Historic Daniel Boone Home and village by lantern-light, listen to stories of the past and hear storyteller Anne Williams tell "The Legend of Sleepy Hollow.” The home, where the frontiersman died in 1820, is the centerpiece of the village. Tour reservations are available between 6 and 9 p.m.
Haunted Belleville Walking Tour
When 6-9 p.m. Oct. 20-23 • Where Meet at Labor & Industrial Museum, 123 North Church Street, Belleville • How much $20 • More info 618-234-0600; hauntedbelleville2021.eventbrite.com
The St. Clair Historical Society appreciates a spooky story. Join the group this year for a haunted exploration of the historic Hexenbuckel Neighborhood. Tours run about 90 minutes, and all stops are outdoors.
When Various times • Where Lemp Mansion, 3322 DeMenil Place • How much $40 for table of four for trivia; $70 in advance for party • More info lempmansion.com
The most notorious mansion in St. Louis (three members of the Lemp family died by suicide there) is now a restaurant and inn, and its owners cultivate stories of the home's hauntings. The mansion will throw a Halloween bash Oct. 30, a trivia night Oct. 29, and history tours and comedy-mystery dinners throughout October.
Campbell House Museum
When Twilight Tours are 6-10 p.m. Oct. 29; Snap Apple Night is 6 p.m. Oct. 22 • Where 1508 Locust Street • How much $15 for Twilight Tours, reservations required; $10 for Snap Apple Night • More info campbellhousemuseum.org
Learn about somber traditions with members of the Mourning Society of St. Louis and sample funeral biscuits as you tour this historic home after hours. The house will be decorated for Robert Campbell’s 1879 funeral, with a casket sitting in the black bunting-draped front parlor. On Snap Apple night, tour the museum and hear a presentation about Halloween traditions in the museum’s new lecture space.
When 5 p.m. Oct. 16; lectures start at 6 p.m. • Where 3352 DeMenil Place • How much $15-$30 • More info demenil.org/mirrors-and-mystics
Tour the historic Chatillion-DeMenil Mansion, but watch out for ghosts. Guests can also receive a tarot card reading and learn about Victorian plagues and pestilence from three presenters (a virtual ticket is available). Proof of vaccination and masks are required for the in-person event.
An Evening in the Cemetery
When 6:30-9 p.m. Oct. 8-9 • Where Thornhill at Faust Park, 15185 Olive Boulevard, Chesterfield • How much $5, free for children under 4 • More info 314-615-8328; stlouisco.com
Frederick Bates, Missouri’s second governor, is waiting to meet visitors at Faust Park. Tour his home and the family cemetery, where he was buried 196 years ago. Docents in historic costumes will talk about mourning practices and superstitions.
Halloween Hayrides at Faust Park
When 6:30-10 p.m. Oct. 22-23 • Where Faust Historic Village at Faust Park, 15185 Olive Boulevard, Chesterfield • How much $10, $5 for walk-through only, free for ages 3 and under; reservations required • More info 314-615-8328; stlouiscountymo.gov
Ride through the candlelit historic village at Faust Park, created from buildings brought here from all over St. Louis County, then listen to storytellers, enjoy refreshments and keep warm at the campfire. You can skip the hayride and just walk through the village if you’d like.
Ghost Stories at Jefferson Barracks
When 6:30 and 8 p.m. Oct. 23 • Where Jefferson Barracks Park, 345 North Road West • How much $7; advance registration required • More info 314-615-8800 or firstname.lastname@example.org
Listen to costumed storytellers tell spooky tales at historic Jefferson Barracks, home to more than a few spectral beings. Bring your own blanket or chair for seating, and meet at the Jefferson Barracks Visitor Center.
When Various dates; some tours are available year-round • Where Depart from various locations in Alton • How much Prices vary • More info altonhauntings.com
Alton is known as one of the most haunted small towns in America, and there’s no lack of books, ghost hunts and stately mansions to try and convince you. Troy Taylor has written more than 125 books about ghosts, crime and the unexplained in America, and several of them are about Alton. He owns American Hauntings, a company that provides hunts, tours and excursions across the country, including in Alton. There are plenty of walking and bus tours to choose from.
Trolley Tours, Haunted Craft Beer Walks
When Various dates, through Oct. 29 • Where Depart from various locations in Alton • How much $45 and up • More info altonhauntedtours.com
Hop on a trolley and tour Alton's most haunted places, including the old Milton School and the McPike Mansion, where guests will participate in a dark room session in the wine cellar. On the Haunted Craft Beer Walk, guests will visit five haunted locations paired with pours of Old Bakery Beer Co. brews.
Fox Theatre Ghost Tours
When Various dates, through Oct. 31 • Where 527 North Grand Boulevard • How much $40, $25 for tarot card readings • More info fabulousfox.com
Join members of the St. Louis Paranormal Research society as they take you inside the historic Fox Theatre for a tour of its “hot spots” and tales of recent investigations there. The theater is more than 90 years old and is the setting for many ghost sightings and unexplained occurrences.
Family and grown-up fun
Adult Egg Hunt
When 8-10 p.m. Oct. 9 • Where Jefferson Barracks Park, 345 North Road West • How much $10; advance registration required • More info 314-615-5572; friendsofjeffersonbarracks.com/egg_hunt_store.php
Hop on down a spooky bunny trail on 250 acres of Jefferson Barracks Park, and keep your eyes peeled for more than 10,000 hidden eggs, which can be redeemed for prizes. Compete or cheer along during a Halloween costume contest, with prizes for the top three looks. Food and drinks will be available for purchase. Bring a basket, a flashlight and friends, but only if you're 18 or older.
When Various dates • Where 750 North 16th Street • How much Prices vary • More info citymuseum.org
City Museum is ready to party. The fun starts with a rooftop screening of "The Rocky Horror Picture Show" (7 p.m. Oct. 8), presented by Flustered Mustard. This month's installment of City Nights at City Museum is an adult game night, and costumes are encouraged (7-11 p.m. Oct. 15; 21 and up only). Costumed kids can trick-or-treat a day before Halloween at select museum slides (10 a.m.-5 p.m.). Freakfest: A Night at the Museum returns on Halloween night with music on four stages (7:30 p.m.-midnight Oct. 31; 18 and up only). And when that jack-o'-lantern's smile begins to fade, give it a toss at the annual Pumpkin Chunkin event (Nov. 6).
Riverboats at the Gateway Arch
When Various dates • Where 50 South Leonor K. Sullivan Boulevard • How much $18-$42 • More info 1-877-982-1410; gatewayarch.com/riverboats
Celebrate fall along the Mississippi River with a new lineup of themed cruises on the Riverboats at the Gateway Arch. Feast on German dishes and drinks on an Oktoberfest Cruise (Oct. 10, Oct. 17), dress up for Halloween with other adults (Oct. 30) and bring the kids in costume (Oct. 30, Oct. 31). Phantasmagoria, a Victorian horror troupe, performs various dates through Oct. 24.
When Through Oct. 31 • Where 10501 Gravois Road • How much $40 for Halloween at the Farm; $15 for Fall Fest • More info grantsfarm.com
Grant’s Farm brings back its popular Halloween drive-thru experience that debuted last year and quickly sold out. At Halloween at the Farm, your brood remains in the car while rolling past spooky scenes. Upgrade your experience with a Tricks ’n’ Treats or Spooktacular package, which include drinks, snacks and other treats. During daytime hours Saturdays and Sundays, through Oct. 31, Fall Fest returns with fall-themed food and drinks, a giant corn sandbox, and pumpkin and gourd decorating; stay at the park all day for $15.
When Fridays-Saturdays, through Oct. 30 • Where Eckert's Fun Farm, 2719 Eckert Orchard Lane, Millstadt • How much $11-$16.50, $6 for additional rides • More info eckerts.com/millstadt-haunted-hayride-bonfires
After spending the day at Eckert’s, take a haunted hayride through the farm. The family-friendly rides run continuously from sundown until 10 p.m., and admission includes other fall activities such as a petting farm, an underground slide, a pumpkin cannon and pig races. Bonfire rental sites are also available.
Jack-o'-Lantern Trail, Trunk or Treat
When 6-9 p.m. Oct. 29 • Where Faust Historic Village at Faust Park, 15185 Olive Boulevard, Chesterfield • How much $5-$8 • More info 314-615-8333; stlouiscountymo.gov
Walk by the light of jack-o'-lanterns through the historic village at Faust Park for treats and a trip back in time. Decorated pumpkins and vehicles are encouraged.
Legends & Lanterns
When 11 a.m.-6 p.m. Oct. 9, noon-5 p.m. Oct. 10, 11 a.m.-6 p.m. Oct. 16, noon-5 p.m. Oct. 17, 5-8 p.m. Oct. 22, 11 a.m.-8 p.m. Oct. 23, noon-5 p.m. Oct. 24 • Where Main Street, St. Charles • How much Free • More info discoverstcharles.com
St. Charles becomes a ghost town when villains, witches and spirits invade the streets to offer treats and tricks. The Legends & Lanterns festival channels the vintage charm of Halloween from the 1910s to the ’30s, and you and your little monsters can interact with creepy characters, celebrate Dia de los Muertos, vote for your favorite scarecrow and learn about Victorian mourning customs.
The Magic House
When Through Oct. 31 • Where 516 South Kirkwood Road, Kirkwood • How much Free with $12 admission • More info magichouse.org
The Magic House knows kids, and it knows most may not enjoy a true haunted house. The Not-So-Haunted House, on Fridays-Sundays, includes favorite storybook characters and a scavenger hunt throughout the museum. Halloween Magic continues Tuesdays-Sundays in outdoor locations, with a spiderweb maze, pumpkin tic-tac-toe, Halloween-themed art projects and fall treats available for purchase in the cafe.
Missouri History Museum
When 4:30-7 p.m. Oct. 28 • Where 5700 Lindell Boulevard, Forest Park • How much Free • More info mohistory.org
Swing by the Healthy History-Lovin’ Halloween Party at the Missouri History Museum for candy-free festivities. Children are encouraged to wear costumes while stretching and monster-mashing, crafting masks and listening to a suspenseful story.
National Museum of Transportation
When 11 a.m.-3 p.m. and 5:30-8:30 p.m. Oct. 16 • Where 2933 Barrett Station Road, Kirkwood • How much Free with admission for daytime event; $10 for evening event where reservations required • More info tnmot.org/event/trick-or-track/
During Trick or Track, kids can track around the museum looking for treats. Choose the daytime event, which is included with museum admission, or arrive at night for a spookier experience. "Serengeti Steve and His Reptiles Show" will appear during the day and at night.
When 3:30-8:30 p.m. Oct. 22-24 • Where 500 William Danforth Way, Gray Summit, Missouri • How much Free, but there is a charge for some activities; registration required • More info 314-982-3232; purinafarms.com
Howl-O-Ween Fest at Purina Farms includes live animal petting areas, storytelling, a display by the World Bird Sanctuary, photo ops and performances by the Purina Incredible Dog Team.
Train or Treat
When Oct. 8-31 • Where St. Louis Union Station, 1820 Market Street • How much $31.99, free for children 2 and under • More info stlouisunionstation.com/halloween-train-ticketing
The fun engineers at St. Louis Union Station have decorated four stationery rail cars for a family-friendly Halloween experience called Train or Treat. Guests can also visit a barnyard and maze, get a pumpkin and other Halloween treats, and enjoy the ambiance of the station with additional activities and games around the lake.
Sophia M. Sachs Butterfly House
When 10-4 p.m. daily (closed Mondays), through October • Where 15193 Olive Boulevard, Chesterfield • How much Free with $5-$8 admission; fees for other special events • More info mobot.org
This month, the Butterfly House metamorphoses into the Booterfly House, with creatures lurking in the Creepy Crawly Cave, botanicals gone mad in the Conservatory and spiders living amongst the Muffet Family. The Butterfly House also hosts a ticketed Wicked Wings and Wine event Oct. 1 and a Bug Ball for kids Oct. 23.
St. Louis Zoo
When Oct. 15-31 • Where St. Louis Zoo, 1 Government Drive, Forest Park • How much $8.95-$11.95; reservations required for all zoo visits • More info stlzoo.org
The St. Louis Zoo gets in the Halloween spirit with spooky nighttime events and more low-key daytime fun. Visit Boo at the Zoo after hours to enjoy lights and decorated scenes throughout the park. Halloweekend celebrations (Oct. 16-17, Oct. 23-24, Oct. 30-31) feature special activities during the zoo’s regular hours. The German-inspired Zootoberfest takes place Oct. 2-3 and Oct. 9-10.
Six Flags Fright Fest
When Various dates, through Oct. 31 • Where 4900 Six Flags Road, Eureka • How much Free with admission • More info sixflags.com/stlouis
The most popular event of the theme park’s year returns with family-friendly scares and activities during the day and scarier ghouls wandering the grounds at night. New this year: a Creatures of the Corn maze and Uncaged, an attraction with creepy, empty cages and the animals that escaped them. Screenings of "The Rocky Horror Picture Show," accompanied by a live shadowcast performance by Flustered Mustard, will be Oct. 16 and Oct. 22.
Halloween in the Central West End
When 11 a.m.-midnight Oct. 30 • Where Maryland and Euclid avenues • How much Free, $25-$50 to enter costume contest • More info cwescene.com
The day starts with family-friendly activities, and as the sun goes down, adults get to party and cheer during the costume contest, known for its elaborate and outrageous creations. The winners get $6,000 in cash and prizes. The children's costume parade is at 11 a.m., and the dog costume parade at 1 p.m.
Edwardsville/Glen Carbon Halloween parade
When 6:30 p.m. Oct. 31 • Where Starts at Lincoln Middle School parking lot at Schwarz and West streets in Edwardsville, then travels east on St. Louis Street to Vandalia Street, north on North Main Street to High Street • How much Free • More info edglenchamber.com/halloween-parade.html
For nearly 100 years, residents of Edwardsville, Glen Carbon and the surrounding area have celebrated Halloween with this parade, brought back this year after going on hiatus in 2020. It will also be livestreamed on the city of Edwardsville Facebook page.
Alton Halloween Parade
When 7:30 p.m. Oct. 30 • Where Starts on Broadway at Washington Avenue in Alton, travels to Piasa Street, ends at Ninth Street • How much Free • More info riversandroutes.com/events/alton-halloween-parade-2021/
Alton has celebrated Halloween with this parade since 1916. The streets of “the most haunted small town in America” will be filled with spectators watching the floats, bands and spooky spectres pass by.
O’Fallon Rotary Children’s Halloween Parade
When Noon-3 p.m. Oct. 30 • Where Starts on Vine at State Street in O'Fallon, Illinois, ends at East First Street • How much Free • More info facebook.com/rotaryclubofofallon
Compete in the costume contest and trick or treat at participating businesses after the annual children’s parade.
Howl’oween Pet Parade
When Noon Oct. 17 • Where Assemble at Associated Bank parking lot (100 East Washington Street); parade travels on East Lincoln, South Charles and East Main streets, Belleville • How much $10 per dog; costume contest is free • More info bahspets.org/event/howloween-pet-parade
Dress up or cheer for your favorite costumed pet in this annual parade and contest, hosted by the Belleville Area Humane Society. A benefit 5K takes place at 10 a.m.