Haunted Chicago: A Comprehensive Guide to the City’s Scares

This Halloween you could be stuck giving out candy and jamming to the Monster Mash. If you’re tired of the typical festivities, however, there are plenty of action-packed alternatives around Chicago!

On October 30th, Pilsen based charter school, UNO, will host Carrera de los Muertos, a 5K Race and Fundraiser. The race begins at 8am at Bartolome de las Casas Charter School, located at 1641 W. 16th Street. The cost of the race is $35, but watching it is free. At the end of the race, the expected 3,000 runners will be able to enjoy snacks, live mariachi music, and get a T-shirt.

On October 31st, the 14th annual North Halsted Street Halloween Parade will take place. The parade is free of cost and starts at 6pm. Come watch the boys and ghouls show their best costumes and party in the street. If you had fun at the Pride parade, I would definitely recommend going. This year it is hosted by North Halsted’s favorite drag queen extraordinaire, “Miss Foozy,” and the theme is “Little Street of Horrors.”

Dream Reapers Haunted House is another hot location if you’re looking for a thrill. It’s been rated the scariest haunted house in Chicagoland for the past three years. At Dream Reapers you won’t be scared, you will be scared out of your wits. Located at 1945 Cornell Avenue in Melrose Park, Dream Reapers is over 14,000 square feet of absolute fright. This tops all other haunted houses with over 22 rooms, 40+ animatronics, over 40 actors and actresses, and something rare in the industry – scents based upon the theme of the room! The cost of this utterly horrifying experience is $16 and Dream Reapers opens at 7pm. Convenient for everyone, this haunted house has wheelchair accessibility and emergency exits. On a personal note, when I was 13, I had to be escorted out of one of the emergency exits. I was so scared I started puking everywhere!

Ever wonder why the Chicago Hauntings Ghost Tour stops at UIC? For small fee between $28 and $32, it will show you what haunts the Hull House and what other ghost stories linger around Chicago. The bus travels to the locations featured in Ursula Bielski’s, Chicago Haunts, book series. On this one-of-a-kind bus tour, you’ll have the chance to see phantoms from Fort Dearborn, Death Alley, the St. Valentine’s Day Massacre site, Eastland Disaster, and more! To reserve a ticket, go to www.hauntingchicago.com

When the 31st rolls around, don’t make a stop at Target for a bunch of candy, and don’t sit down to your VHS copy of Halloween. Go out and get a real scare this year!

Published in The Chicago Flame October 17, 2010

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