Every year, too late, you realize that yours is the lame Halloween house on the block. Or, also too late, you’ve realized that a cubicle is not where you want to work but instead you want to follow your creepy, oozy dreams and terrify the masses each October. Well ScareLA has the answer to these and all of your other October 31st-related dilemmas.

Event co-producer David Markland says, “ScareLA will shine the spotlight on everything that makes Los Angeles the ultimate Halloween destination in America.” Producing partner Lora Ivanova adds,  “Our city is brimming with talent and scary history just waiting to be discovered. Are you curious about hidden urban haunts? Want to get a head start on your Halloween costume?  Interested in creating your own attraction or going pro? We have you covered.”

The first Los Angeles convention dedicated solely to celebrating Halloween, ScareLA will make its debut Aug. 10 and 11 at the L.A. Mart. Fans of the macabre and the people who create it will be able to share, inspire and play in anticipation of the now month-long celebration of the dead, mostly dead, haunted and harrowing.

ScareLAButtonsA creepily curated collection of exhibitors will be selling scary goods, showcasing their services and sharing job opportunities, both seasonal and year round. Experts and celebrities in the worlds of the haunt business, horror entertainment fields and more will be featured on a variety of panels for spine-tingling learning opportunities. Presentations by those planning the top and upcoming haunts in Los Angeles will give sneak peeks and unveils for your inspiration. Local horror-themed companies and musicians will be performing, along with professional demonstrations of make-up, set building, animatronics, costume design and more.

All day Saturday and Sunday, ScareLA patrons can watch a rotating line-up of short horror films and haunt walk through videos in their pop-up theatre. There will also be live demonstrations by Bone Yard Effects, where they’ll turn volunteers into the walking dead, monsters and more.

A great opportunity to add to or completely swap out your Halloween look will be offered by Los Angeles Costume Swap. Classes include such diverse topics as  “Upcycling Your Halloween” and “How to Green Your Halloween,” which will give you tips on scaring people but not scarring the Earth. A “Scare Actor Workshop” will give aspiring spookers the know-how to terrify the masses with haunt-tailored improv exercises, and how to create custom characters when auditioning for attractions like Haunted Hayride. Combined with other classes such as “Telling the Tale: The Importance of Story and Theme for Haunted Attractions,” “Top 5 Things You Need to Know To Succeed in the Haunted House Business,” and “How to Be A Marketing and PR Monster,” you can get ahead in the haunted Halloween business. Fans of Halloween and haunted history won’t want to miss presentations on “Ghosts of Los Angeles,” “Los Strangeles,” “Classic Home Haunts,” and “Dia de los Muertos vs. Halloween.”  And where else in Los Angeles can you find a course on “Zombie Prosthetics 101”?

(credit:  Joe Raedle/Getty Images)

(credit: Joe Raedle/Getty Images)

Costumes are encouraged at ScareLA, but in an effort to keep the event child-friendly, they must be PG-13. Children under 12 are free with an adult, and special kid activities will take place on Sunday from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. ScareLA requests that nothing ooze off your costume, so keep that blood and slime on your person at all times. Food trucks, ice cream, coffee and refreshments will be available, as well as a daily Happy Hour from 3:30 to 6:30 p.m. during which time alcohol will be served. Parking is $10 in the L.A. Mart parking lot but numerous metered spaces and lots of varying prices surround the ScareLA location. You can also take the Metro over, which has numerous stops within walking distance.

Susanna Morgan, a native Los Angeleno, blogs about being a parenting non-expert, single mom of two boys, picket fence-less and June Cleaver’s nemesis over at NotJune.com. She’s on Twitter too. The pearls are off…

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