(Credit: Ashley Ryan)
(Credit: Ashley Ryan)
With the arrival of October, we’re well into the fall season. While pumpkin spice lattes and sweater weather are upon us, so are haunted houses, pumpkin patches and monster costumes. This year, visit the standard October gems — Mickey’s Halloween Party, Knott’s Scary Farm and the Long Beach Zombie Fest. But, don’t fret as there are plenty of events that have nothing to do with Halloween as well. Take your pick!

October 1, 2016
(Credit: Sunny Kim)

(Credit: Sunny Kim)


Floral Watercolor Workshop
Happily Ever Etched
8028 Beach Boulevard
Buena Park, CA 90620
(714) 527-4272
www.happilyeveretched.com

Buena Park’s most charming gift boutique, Happily Ever Etched, kicks off the month with a floral watercolor workshop. Taught by Dianuh Aerin, founder of another specialty shop called Chasing Linen, the workshop walks amateur artists through a variety of things. The three-hour class will first detail the tools necessary for watercolor painting, then Aerin will discuss a plethora of watercolor techniques. Students will also practice strokes and washes before creating their own floral masterpiece. In addition to your own painting, you’ll head home with your own set of supplies so you can continue your new craft as well as a floral print for added inspiration. Aerin will also teach a water brush lettering workshop at Happily Ever Etched on Oct. 15.

October 1, 2016
(Credit: Steve Garfinkel)

(Credit: Steve Garfinkel)


Oddball Comedy and Curiosity Festival
Irvine Meadows Amphitheatre
8808 Irvine Center Drive
Irvine, CA 92618
(949) 855-8095
www.oddballfest.com

A touring festival presented by comedy website and film production company Funny or Die, the Oddball Comedy and Curiosity Festival is now in its fourth year. The festival will be held at the Irvine Meadows Amphitheatre for the last time, bringing the joy of comedy to Orange County once more before the venue shuts down this fall. Headliners at Oddball include big names like Dane Cook, Nick Swardson and Sebastian Maniscalco. Comedians Ali Wong, Iliza Shlesinger, Kumail Nanjiani, Matthew Broussard and Tom Segura round out the festival’s Oct. 1 line-up. Jeff Ross, also known as the Roastmaster General, will host the Oddball Comedy and Curiosity Festival while Big Jay Oakerson will host the smaller stage.

October 5-9, 2016
(Credit: Courtesy of Toshiba Golf Classic)

(Credit: Courtesy of Toshiba Golf Classic)


Toshiba Golf Classic
Newport Beach Country Club
1600 East Coast Highway
Newport Beach, CA 92660
(949) 644-9550
www.toshibaclassic.com

Golf lovers will go crazy over the Toshiba Golf Classic, hosted by the Newport Beach Country Club. This annual tournament brings a talented group of professional athletes—athletes that have over 400 collective victories worldwide—including Jeff Maggert, Jerry Smith and Glen Day. The day before the event starts, the country club will host Breakfast with a Champion featuring honorary guest John Daly. The following days will include both the Classic Pro-Am and three rounds of professional competition. The Toshiba Golf Classic generates over a million dollars for charity each year, with proceeds currently benefiting Mary & Dick Allen Diabetes Center at Hoag Hospital. Over 40 other charities have also benefited from the tournament’s success.

October 6, 2016 – November 12, 2016
(Credit: Sinister Pointe Haunted Attraction)

(Credit: Sinister Pointe Haunted Attraction)


Sinister Pointe Haunted Attraction
West Fullerton Shopping Center
1851 West Orangethorpe Ave
Fullerton, CA 92833
(714) 203-7325
www.sinisterpointe.com

While Halloween events play a major role at local theme parks, there are also plenty of smaller attractions in O.C. that are perfect for celebrating the spooky spirit of the holiday. One such place is Sinister Pointe, a choose-your-own-adventure maze that offers four different paths to choose from. Each section of the maze represents a different realm and, therefore, a different demon. Prepare to be branded with your realm’s mark. In order to escape the demons’ clutches and make their way to the end of the maze, visitors will have to complete various tasks. A general ticket allows access to one realm, but an all-night pass is also available that allows guests to return and visit each of the four portals.

October 13, 2016 – October 29, 2016
(Credit: Ixcanul)

(Credit: Ixcanul)


OC Film Fiesta
Various Locations
Santa Ana, CA
www.ocfilmfiesta.org

The multi-week OC Film Fiesta is a celebration of cultural cinema and heritage, with a focus on Latino media. Feature and short films, documentaries and activities will be showcased at a variety of locations within Santa Ana, including Bower’s Museum, the Grand Central Art Center, the Heritage Museum of OC and Santa Ana High School’s Bill Medley Auditorium. The opening night celebration at Bower’s Museum will feature a tribute to Juan Gabriel while the rest of the event will screen films like black-and-white film “Ukamau”, silent film “Wara Wara” and documentary “No Más Bebés” as well as “Ixcanul” (pictured), the first Guatemalan film written entirely in the indigenous dialect Kaqchikel, the language of the Mayans. The festival will also host free pop-up screenings as well.

October 14, 2016 – October 16, 2016
(Credit: Long Beach Zombie Fest)

(Credit: Long Beach Zombie Fest)


Long Beach Zombie Fest
Rainbow Lagoon
400 Shoreline Village Drive
Long Beach, CA 90802
(562) 495-5959
www.longbeachzombiefest.com

Celebrate October with this three-day, undead festival. Held annually at Rainbow Lagoon, the event features all the blood and guts you can handle. Each evening, visitors are invited to complete a zombie walk through Shoreline Village; those that arrive early can even get their zombie make-up done for free, courtesy of students from Cinema Makeup School. The event also features a maze with an interactive scare zone, a mobile escape room, laser tag, a reptile exhibit, zombie flash mobs and dance contests, costume contests, workshops, a 5D ride and a photo booth for souvenir photos. With live music, vendors and food available for purchase, this festival has everything you could ask for.

October 15, 2016
 (Credit: Oliver Zavala)

(Credit: Oliver Zavala)


Anaheim Mariachi Festival
Pearson Park Amphitheatre
401 North Lemon Street
Anaheim, CA 90805
(714) 778-4356
www.anaheimmariachi.com

Now in its 11th year, the Anaheim Mariachi Festival is a wonderful display of Mexican tradition and talent. The artistry is demonstrated both in the performance of mariachi music, as the name implies, but also in the form of dance. In addition to mariachi music, the festival works to celebrate Folklorico dance and ranchera singing. The concert showcase will be held at the Pearson Park Amphitheatre at 6 p.m. Before the concert starts, a street fair will be held in the park. The free fair, running from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m., offers food, activities and plenty of local vendors selling crafts and services. Visitors from various ethnicities all across OC help make this festival what it is—a brilliant display of culture and art in the midst of a welcoming community.

October 15, 2016 & 22, 2016
(Credit: Julia Karo/shutterstock)

(Credit: Julia Karo/shutterstock)


Succulent Pumpkin Workshop
Roger’s Gardens
2301 San Joaquin Hills Road
Corona del Mar, CA 92625
(949) 640-5800
www.rogersgardens.com

Succulents are all the rage right now, making delightfully modern home décor pieces and drought-friendly alternatives to front-yard shrubs and flowers. Work them in to your Halloween décor with this workshop. Visitors will have two guides to show them how to make a charming fall centerpiece: succulents flowing out of plump pumpkins. With two two-hour workshops on both Oct. 15 and Oct. 22, there are plenty of chances for you to take advantage of this fun activity. Materials are included in the workshop fee and the class teaches guests not only how to create their centerpiece, but also how to care for it and prune it to make it last for months.

Now Through October 16, 2016
(Credit: Musical Theatre Village)

(Credit: Musical Theatre Village)


“You’re a Good Man, Charlie Brown”
Musical Theatre Village
36 Mauchly
Irvine, CA 92618
(949) 753-1996
www.musicaltheatrevillage.net

There are plenty of live shows to see this fall season, but “You’re a Good Man, Charlie Brown” is a classic. First performed in the 1960s, this musical is obviously based on the Peanuts characters created by Charles Schulz. Join Lucy, Schroeder, Sally, Linus, Snoopy and Charlie Brown himself as the gang runs through classic Peanuts antics complete with plenty of playful songs. With simple costumes and stage design, it’s an easy musical to put on. Musical Theatre Village has three different casts—a child cast, a teen cast and an adult cast—that will each perform various times from Sept. 16 through Oct. 16. The closing night gala will offer food for an additional price once the show is over.

October 20, 2016
(Credit: Rob Shanahan)

(Credit: Rob Shanahan)


Ringo Starr and His All Starr Band
Segerstrom Center for the Arts
600 Town Center Drive
Costa Mesa, CA 92626
(714) 556-2787
www.scfta.org

This beloved member of the Beatles continues to delight audiences around the globe with his classic rock hits. The accomplished performer has been inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame twice, both as a Beatle and on his own, and has earned nine Grammy awards for his nearly 20 studio albums. His current project, Ringo Starr and His All Starr Band, features a selection of talented, well-known musicians; since the project began in 1989, there have been 12 different groups of all-stars. The current line-up includes musicians that have played with Journey, Toto, Spinal Tap, Santana, David Lee Roth and more. Join Ringo and his All Starrs on the Segerstrom stage as they perform songs from both his solo repertoire and the Beatles discography.

October 22, 2016
(credit: Mateusz Gzik/shutterstock)

(credit: Mateusz Gzik/shutterstock)


Rock & Brews Monster Beer Fest
Rock & Brews Restaurant
7777 Beach Boulevard
Buena Park, CA 90620
(714) 266-0314
www.rockandbrews.com

Southern California is quickly becoming a hotspot for craft brewing and beer fests. This Halloween-themed festival is the first at Rock & Brews, but it is sure to be a hit. The rock & roll-themed restaurant — founded by Gene Simmons, concert promoter Dave Furano and more — will offer over 100 different beers as well as unlimited beer tastings. Combining that with live music is only natural, given the founders of the chain, but there will also be a variety of games and an exciting costume contest complete with prizes. General and VIP tickets are available, though VIP guests will be allowed in an hour earlier than the others. Although it’s in its first year, Rock & Brews aims to become an annual Halloween event celebrating both the holiday itself and OC’s love for craft beer.

October 23, 2016
(Credit: Brian Adams)

(Credit: Brian Adams)


Tony Bennett
Segerstrom Center for the Arts
600 Town Center Drive
Costa Mesa, CA 92626
(714) 556-2787
www.scfta.org

Old-time crooner Tony Bennett hits the Segerstrom stage on October 23, bringing with him a slew of hits, including “Rags to Riches”, “I Wanna Be Around” and the classic “I Left My Heart in San Francisco”. His eclectic catalog includes a variety of pop, jazz, big band and show tunes, many of which are influenced by his own personality. This iconic repertoire has produced songs that have charted over the span of six decades, earning him 17 Grammy wins in his lifetime. And he’s not stopping anytime soon. The man is a joy to see live and the stunning Segerstrom Hall is just the place to do so.

October 29, 2016
(credit: Jccooper055)

(credit: Jccooper055)


Step Out: Walk to Stop Diabetes
UC Irvine
Aldrich Park
Irvine, CA 92697
(714) 662-7940
stepout.diabetes.org

Step Out: Walk to Stop Diabetes offers the best of both worlds: an opportunity to give back to those in need and the chance to get a workout of your own in at the same time. Sponsored by the American Diabetes Association, this walk aims to raise funds that will be donated to the organization in an effort to fight diabetes. The event welcomes those with type 1, type 2 and gestational diabetes, but it is also open to the public, allowing anyone to walk—whether their lives have been touched by someone suffering from diabetes or not. The event is often made up of teams of friends and family, but school teams, company teams, club teams and national teams participate as well. In addition to the 5k walk, visitors can partake in other activities, live music, prizes and vendors promoting health and wellness.

October 29, 2016
(credit: Scott Olson/Getty Images)

(credit: Scott Olson/Getty Images)


Anaheim Fall Festival and Halloween Parade
Center Street Promenade
201 West Center Street
Anaheim, CA 92805
(714) 999-3456
www.anaheimfallfestival.org

For nearly 100 years, locals have come together to celebrate Halloween and fall in general in Anaheim. The Halloween parade is one of the few that takes place in the evening rather than the morning, an appropriate time for ghosts and goblins to materialize along the streets of Downtown Anaheim. Local artists, performers, schools, business and organizations are represented in the twilight parade. The fall festival, on the other hand, was originally developed to celebrate the harvest season, but has since included aspects of Halloween and Dia de los Muertos as well. With costume contests (including one for pets!), live music, games, a pumpkin patch and local artisans selling their crafts, this free festival is the perfect way to spend the day before watching the annual parade.

Through October 30, 2016
(Credit: Willy Sanjuan)

(Credit: Willy Sanjuan)


Old World Oktoberfest
Old World German Restaurant
7561 Center Avenue
Huntington Beach, CA 90647
(714) 895-8020
www.oldworld.ws

Old World German Restaurant is the best spot in Orange County to celebrate the annual tradition of Oktoberfest. Running from September 11 to October 30, the seven-week event has so much to offer visitors — whether they’re beer connoisseurs or not. With imported German beers, authentic food and live music from German bands, this cultural event is perfect for those who can’t head to Europe this October. Sundays offer plenty of fun for the whole family with Kinderfest; carnival games, face painting, children’s music, a bounce house and wiener dog races make for a great day out for the whole family. Ending just before Halloween, the last day of Old World’s Oktoberfest offers both children’s and doggy costume contests.

Through October 31, 2016
(Credit: Knott’s Berry Farm)

(Credit: Knott’s Berry Farm)


Knott’s Scary Farm
Knott’s Berry Farm
8039 Beach Boulevard
Buena Park, CA 90620
(714) 220-5200
www.knotts.com

By day, Knott’s Berry Farm is home to plenty of Old West fun and the Knott’s Spooky Farm celebration with Snoopy and friends. But by night, the famous theme park is turned one giant scare zone with plenty of monsters lurking in the fog. This year’s spooktacular will feature some new mazes, including the creepy purgatory Shadow Lands and the farm-themed Red Barn. The new scare zone, The Hollow, also features the Headless Horseman complete with an undead army. The truly impressive new offering is Special Ops: Infected, an interactive maze that arms visitors with laser guns and gives them the chance to enter their very own videogame—with zombies as their shooting targets. Knott’s Scary Farm will also have new standalone rooms as well as a variety of old favorites.

Through October 31, 2016
(Credit: Maggie Ford for Irvine Park Railroad)

(Credit: Maggie Ford for Irvine Park Railroad)


Irvine Railroad Pumpkin Patch
Irvine Regional Park
1 Irvine Park Road
Orange, CA 92869
(714) 997-3968
www.irvineparkrailroad.com

Going to the pumpkin patch is always a thrill, but there’s something magical about the Irvine Railroad Pumpkin Patch that is special. Held annually through October, the event features a plethora of activities that are perfect for families, friends or a fall date with your significant other. No matter who you’re with, the joy of the harvest season is apparent by the railroad’s décor. Take a ride on the train or on a hayride, pan for gold, decorate themed cookies or compete in the pumpkin ring toss. The pumpkin patch also offers its own haunted house, a massive hay maze and festive wooden picture stands to pop your faces into. Before you leave, make sure you remember why you stopped by—pick out the perfect pumpkins for jack-o-lantern carving.

Through October 31, 2016
(Credit: The 17th Door)

(Credit: The 17th Door)


17th Door Haunt Experience
Tustin Marketplace
2856 El Camino Real
Tustin, CA 92782
(714) 441-9080
www.the17thdoor.com

Another independent Halloween attraction, The 17th Door opened up just last year during this time, already making a name for itself as one of the scariest haunts in Orange County. The attraction takes visitors through a whirlwind story, requiring that they face a variety of psychological fears to reach the end of the over 30-minute maze. As the name implies, there are 17 rooms to pass through to complete the attraction with the intensity and terror increasing as you go. The haunted house is so scary that it requires a signed waiver. The monsters are allowed to touch you, unlike most attractions of its kind. It also offers a way out – say the word “mercy” and you’ll skip to the end, avoiding the rest of the terror inside the 17th Door. For those who love to be scared, the 17th Door is the place to be this Halloween season.

Through October 31, 2016
(Credit: Scott Brinegar/Disneyland Resort)

(Credit: Scott Brinegar/Disneyland Resort)


Mickey’s Halloween Party
Disneyland
1313 Disneyland Drive
Anaheim, CA 92802
(714) 781-4565
www.disneyland.com

With scary attractions popping up all over the place, Disneyland offers a fun alternative. Mickey’s Halloween Party, held in the evenings after regular park-goers are kicked out, combines everything you love about Halloween—without the fear. Though it does include spooky music and fog, the Mickey-shaped ghosts are smiling and the attractions are decked out in purple and orange. Dress up in your favorite costume and enter the park’s trick-or-treat stations to get a blend of candy and healthy snacks. As always, the Haunted Mansion and Space Mountain are transformed to include extra ghouls, villains roam on Main Street U.S.A. and the Cadaver Dans will enchant you with their jokes and acapella tunes. Make sure to stick around for the special fireworks show, filled with characters from the Haunted Mansion and the Nightmare Before Christmas as well as spooky Disney villains.

Through November 10, 2016
(Credit: Courtesy of the Fullerton Museum Center)

(Credit: Fullerton Museum Center)


Haunted Walking Tours
Fullerton Museum Center
301 North Pomona Avenue
Fullerton, CA 92832
(714) 738-6545
www.cityoffullerton.com

With all of the fake haunts popping up during this time, history buffs will love this haunted walking tour featuring some real spooky tales from OC’s past. Starting at the Fullerton Museum Center, the tours visit possible sites of paranormal activity around Downtown Fullerton, including the Plummer Auditorium and the historic California Hotel. While the spooky aspects of the tour are just for fun, the history revealed throughout is as real as it gets. An hour before the tour starts, visitors are invited to attend a meeting with members of the North Orange County Paranormal Society, who discuss how they investigate claims of paranormal activity. The two and a half hour tours typically sell out so make sure to make reservations in advance.

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