It’s the time of year when we remember the dead, the saints, the martyrs, the people who have passed on and—hopefully—have found some eternal peace. But for those souls locked somewhere in the in-between, well, perhaps October 31 is the time we raise their spirits and muddle the lines between the earthly and ethereal. Here are a few wicked haunted attractions to celebrate All Hallow’s Eve week, 2017.
PHOBIA HAUNTED TRAIL
Oct. 27-29, 31, 8 p.m. – midnight
Cardinal Lanes, 3907 Shipyard Blvd.
Everyone loves a circus! But what about one with disgruntled clowns? Phobia Haunted Trail is the ultimate spooky experience with live actors leading participants through a 10-15 minute abandoned big top, with some of its most colorful players looking to get even! Tickets are $10-$15.
A less scary version of the event takes place October 21 and 28, noon – 4 p.m. Tickets are $5.
LYCEUM ACADEMY HAUNTED HOUSE
Oct. 26-29, 31, 7 p.m. – 10 p.m. weeknights; through midnight on weekends
921 Princess St.
The world of horror movies will come to life with the New Hanover High School’s Lyceum Academy Haunted House, Sounds Stage 13, devised and decorated by the students themselves. Movie buffs who adore the silent stalker type like Jason Voorhees will find comfort here as much as those who fearfully welcome the cryptic nail blades of Freddie Kruger. The adrenaline rush through your body and heartbeat pounding your skull will be all you ever wanted from Halloween! PG-13; tickets are $12.
WILMINGTON HORROR STORY
Oct. 26-28, 31, 7 p.m.
Bellamy Mansion, 503 Market St.
Burgwin-Wright House, 224 Market St.
No, it’s not Ryan Murphy churning out his hit series “American Horror Story” to local crowds; it’s the fun folks at Pineapple-Shaped Lamps doing their own take on a local version of what horror means. While PSL mostly make audiences laugh, the comedy troupe is flirting with fear (and some humor) this go ‘round, by introducing folks to brainwashing cult mentalities and secret societies. Groups of 20 or more will be led through both the Civil War house of Bellamy and the Revolutionary War house of Burgwin (a.k.a. Mansions of Madness) on October 26-28 and the 31. Tours begin at 7 p.m. and both houses will have refreshments sold onsite. PG-13 event; tickets are $35.
Tours through Oct. 31,
7 p.m. – 9 p.m., $6-$12
All Hallow Eve’s Gala, Oct. 27,
7 p.m. – 9 p.m., $55
Civil War Field Hospital, Oct. 27, 10 a.m. – 3 p.m., or Oct. 28, 10 a.m. – 9 p.m., free
Latimer House, 126 S. 3rd St.
Through Halloween folks can head over to the Latimer House, which is home to our very own Lower Cape Fear Historical Society (LCFHS), for a closer look at death practices during the Victorian era. The exhibit includes the 1850 mourning dress of Elizabeth S. Latimer, her hair jewelry, as well as post-modern photography. The home will be decorated as if undergoing a Victorian wake with live actors on site, and tours taking place nightly from 7 p.m. – 9 p.m. Plus, living historians will be doing mock amputations on the 27 and 28, beginning at 10 a.m. daily with the Civil War Field Hospital tour.
On Friday night, a gala will take place with food, open bar, live music, tarot-card readings, live mock amputations and more from 6 p.m. – 9 p.m. All monies raised go toward LCFHS.
PARANORMAL INVESTIGATIVE TOURS
Oct. 26, 6 p.m. – 9 p.m.; Oct. 27,
6 p.m. – 10 p.m. • Tours on the hour, $15
Poplar Grove Plantation, 10200 Hwy. 17 N.
The Foys—whose four generations of family used to live on Poplar Grove Plantation—continue to make their presence known in 2017. Unexplained phenomenons continually take place on the grounds, as grounds keepers and volunteers have reported sightings of ghostly figures of the Foys themselves and their slaves and tenant farmers flutter about. Visitors will get a history of the tenants of Poplar Grove, as well as a scroll of the dead, wherein they’ll learn who all died on the property. Tourists will see a K2 meter used to detect electromagnetic fields to detect any unrest.
Groups are limited to 15 per tour.
Oct. 28, 6 p.m. – 8 p.m., free
NHC Main Library, 201 Chestnut St.
The library’s haunted basement has been decorated by local students over the last few weeks and will open to the public for one night on October 28. The free attraction is not recommended for all ages, so enter at your own risk.
Memory Lane Comics will be on hand to pass out free comics to kids!
BATTLE HOUSE ZOMBIEFEST
Oct. 28, 7 p.m., $30-$37
Defy Gravity, 6431 Market St.
Say, what? Zombies on trampolines? Yep. It’s a thing. And it’s a thing happening at Defy Gravity on Saturday night. Players will be split into two teams (red and blue) to fight amidst a post-apocalyptic wasteland with super-charged zombies (brought to you by Gore Dolls).
Book at 910-444-1002 or www.defygravity.us/wilmington.
FEAR at Fort Fisher
Oct. 28, 7 p.m. – 9 p.m., $1
Fort Fisher State Rec Area,
1000 Loggerhead Rd.
The Fort Fisher State Recreation Area is a hotbed of haints. As a major battlefield for the Civil War era, participants of the haunted trail will be able to learn about scary legends of the past along the maritime forest trail.
HAUNTED GHOST TROLLY AND BARN
Nightly, 6 p.m. – 9 p.m., $5-$12
Foot of Market Street
The downtown horse-drawn carriage tours turn spooky for the month of October! Guided tours come with Halloween treats for the young ones and ghost stories (appropriately tailored for younger kids). Also, the ride tours through the horse barn, where it’s decorated for the season.
GHOST WALK OF OLD WILMINGTON
Nightly, 6:30 p.m. and 8:30 p.m., $11-$13
Foot of Market Street
The historical port city is elevated by its past in the most exhilarating ways on the Ghost Walk of Old Wilmington. The 90-minute walking tour goes through downtown’s cobblestone streets and beyond to reveal active haunted homes and burial grounds.
HAUNTED PUB CRAWL
Wed.-Sat., 7:30 p.m., $17.50
(drinks not included)
Foot of Market Street
The two-and-half-hour tour pairs two of the ghastliest pastimes in historic ILM: booze and ghosts. Guests will tour through pubs and hear all about the murder, mayhem and debauchery that has taken place behind the pine.