There are a multitude of haunted houses and school ghouls, a Howl-o-Ween party for pets, even a haunted hallway.
Here are a few choices:
• The Ocean Beach Recreation Center will host its annual Halloween Carnival from 2 to 5 p.m. on Saturday, Oct. 26 at 4726 Santa Monica Ave.
“We get probably 400 or 500 kids here and they’re all wearing costumes,” said DJ Napolitan of the Ocean Beach Recreation Center, run by Brian Anthony. “It pretty much takes up our entire gym.”
Napolitan said the recreation center Halloween festival features 10 different carnival games, a costume contest for children of all ages, astro jumps and plenty of food and snacks.
“Kids come in and pay $2 for a wrist band and play any of the games they want and get goodie bags stuffed with prizes, toys and candy,” Napolitan said.
Sodas and hot dogs are $1. The Ocean Beach Kiwanis sponsors the rec center Halloween carnival and helps with volunteers.
“It’s a great time and kids always have fun,” said Napolitan.
• Even pets aren’t left out of Halloween at the beachfront as the Ocean Beach Kiwanis Club hosts a Howl-o-Ween Canine Carnival on Sunday,
Oct. 27 from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. at Dusty Rhodes Park between Nimitz and Sunset Cliffs boulevards. Dress up your dogs in the spookiest, funniest and stateliest costumes and bring them down. A pet parade takes place from 1:30 to
2:30 p.m., with prizes handed out around 3 p.m. for best costumes. For more information, visit www.ocean-beachkiwanis.org.
• Nowhere is Halloween done bigger or better in Point Loma than at the Loma Portal Monster Bash held at the elementary school at 3341 Browning St. The bash puts the ghoul in school, featuring a Halloween carnival and haunted house, staged by volunteer dads Friday, Oct. 25 from 5:30 to 8:30 p.m.
“It’s the best haunted house in Point Loma, open to the entire community and the Dad’s Club goes all out,” boasted Loma Portal parent Heather Nelson. This is a PTA fundraiser offering an array of games, crafts, food and a cakewalk.
“We’ll have arts and crafts, a spooky boutique where you can get your hair spiked and colored and your nails done and Halloween tattoos,” said Nelson. Outdoor carnival fun and games include a photo booth to take pictures of kids in costume.
“Toward the end of the night, probably 7:45 p.m., we’ll have an all-grades costume contest,” she said.
This will be the fourth year Loma Portal dad Will Hage has volunteered, along with 20 or 30 of his peers, to do the Monster Bash haunted house, which he said takes eight hours to set up and three to break down. But it’s all worth it, said Hage. So much so that volunteer school dads keep coming back for more.
“It’s one of those things that gets progressively bigger and better each and every year,” Hage said.
A few dads on the crew continue to help with the haunting event, even though their kids have graduated, because “they feel obligated and it’s such a fun time.”
Hage said the haunted house this year for the first time will be in a huge tent outside on the school blacktop.
“Kids first go through a maze,” Hage said. “Then, they come out and see a ouiji board with an animated pointer that moves back and forth by itself.” Hage said school dads bring all their expertise to bear to create things like a haunted portrait and an eerie graveyard. “One of the dads is a professional stagehand and we have all professional lighting and video, all first-class,” Hage said. He said one dad who is a band member turns into a dead Elvis, playing keyboards in the school haunted house’s graveyard.
“Kids are scared to death when they first go through,” said Hage. “But it’s funny. Once they go in, they go back through over and over again.”
Other local Halloween happenings
• Silver Gate Elementary School in Point Loma presents its annual Harvest Festival. This will feature a haunted hallway from 5 to 8 p.m. at 1499 Venice St. on Friday, Oct. 18 and is open to the public. Guests are invited to join the games, food, laser tag and other Halloween fun activities. The event features a Halloween costume contest, haunted hallway, cakewalk, games for the children, pumpkin patch, face painting and more. Tickets are available at the event. For more information, visit www.sandi.net/silvergate, or call (619) 222-1139.
• Have a screamin’ good time at Correia Middle School’s Spooktacular Music Concert at 5 p.m. on Wednesday,
Oct. 30 at 4302 Valeta St. Correia’s talented advanced band, intermediate band and orchestra will perform in the Correia courtyard. Enjoy a spaghetti dinner, delicious treats, a cakewalk and cake-decorating contest. Dare to enter the haunted middle school auditorium — oooh, scary! All proceeds benefit the Correia Instrumental Music program and Correia’s ASB.
• Cabrillo Elementary School PTA and Cabrillo Recreation Center will host an annual Halloween Carnival at Cabrillo Elementary School, 3120 Talbot St., from 5 to 8 p.m. The event will include a spooky haunted hallway, game booths, carnival rides, cakewalk, prizes and food. Tickets are available at the carnival.
For more information, call (619) 531-1534.