Halloween Haunt at Great America
4701 Great America Parkway
Santa Clara, CA 95054
Dates: Now through October 28
Enjoy trick-or-treating at the theme park but make sure to buy your tickets now. Prices start at $25 and you can purchase online, but those with a 2013 Gold Pass get in for free. The Halloween Hunt runs until October 28 and is only open to ages 13 and older. This event is packed with fright, complete with zombies and other spooky characters. This is not for the faint of heart as the description on the event website is that it’s rather intense, so be prepared to be spooked. The cheaper nights are on Fridays and Sundays as Saturday events are slightly higher. There is also a “Munch with the Monsters” event which features dinner with ghoulish-looking types and costs $13 per person or as they call it, 13 bones. It’s a special themed meal that will be memorable.
Wonderful Witchy Women with a Cause Luncheon and Fundraiser
San Jose Fairmont Hotel
170 S. Market St.
San Jose, CA 95113
Date: Monday, October 29
Experience the good witch on Monday, October 29 from 10:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. This lunchtime Halloween fundraiser is in its seventh year and benefits Heritage Home, EMQ Finding Families and StandUp for Kids Charities. General seating tickets are $100 and you have the chance to meet event founder Cheryl Bailey. Tickets can be purchased individually but the special premium tables must be booked as a set of 10. Event organizers are offering all attendees the option to buy drink tickets in advance online. There is a limit of one drink ticket per person and those who purchase them will be given a glass of bubbly when they check in, however, please arrive between 10:30 a.m. to 11:15 a.m. on the event date. Guests are encouraged to wear their favorite Halloween hat and participate in the auction which features donated jewelry from Escobar Diamonds and other delightful items. If you are looking for a hat, the organization suggests Out of the Envelope and The Black Cat.
Winchester Mystery House
525 S. Winchester Blvd.
San Jose, CA 95128
Dates: Now through October
The famous mansion with endless stairs and windows offers hour-long haunted tours with flashlights to explore the hidden spots throughout the building. Formerly the home of the widow of the founder of the Winchester Rifle company, it is said that she continued to renovate until her death in order to appease ghosts. Discover the bizarre architecture that many say was directed by spirits who tormented the late Mrs. Winchester throughout her life. Some even claim to have seen spirits wandering the halls.
Mommy & Me FREE Kid’s Club: Halloween Family Fest
3055 Olin Ave.
San Jose, CA 95128
Date: Tuesday, October 30
There are no tricks but lots of treats at this free Halloween event. Enjoy everything from Halloween costumes, music and all sorts of pumpkin decorating with plenty of opportunities to take family photos. The event only runs from 10 a.m. to noon on October 30 but it’s in Santana Row so other post-fest activities are available. This is a great chance to dress up your tots and meet other moms with young children.
Halloween Haunted House
Elizabeth Gamble Garden
1431 Waverly St.
Palo Alto, CA 94301
Date: Sunday, October 28
Hosted by the Elizabeth Gamble Garden on October 28, you must register for this event. Geared towards children ages four to 10, the price of admission costs $10 for members and $15 for non-members. Early reservations are highly encouraged. There will be witches and goblins appearing at the Gamble Garden Mansion from 6:30 p.m. to 8 p.m. on the day along with ghosts to meet and greet guests. Kids can also trick-or-treat during the evening as long as they have an adult with them. Aside from spooky hosts and candies, there are games and activities to celebrate the fun of being scared on Halloween. If you are planning to attend, book now as reservations are required and you will be unable to purchase admission tickets onsite.
Related: Haunted W San Francisco Halloween
Rheba Estante is a freelance writer covering all things San Francisco. Her work can be found on Examiner.com.