FRIDAY, October 26
What’s scarier than parking at CityWalk? How about a Halloween hootenanny event that aims for an “immersion experience that will shatter preconceptions, transcending notions of horror genre theatrics and Halloween maze experiences to take visitors to a state of extreme dread, shock and terror.” No, it’s not rush hour on the 405, but Halloween Horror Nights. You can prowl the back lot of Universal Studios and get your scary fill on a journey where you can tiptoe around the Psycho house, Bates Motel and the War of the Worlds disaster scene. Not for kids under 13 — unless you want them to hate you forever — then it’s great for kids! Universal Studios Hollywood, Universal City; Fri.-Sun., Oct. 26-28, plus Wed., Oct. 31, 7 p.m.; $34 & $39. www.halloweenhorrornights.com.
If it’s just not a complete Halloween for you without an anal ring toss, head to Highways for Voyage to the Center of Hades, the Discount Cruise to Hell in “an undead-rock-musical-gay-gore-glitter featuring the Sexy Sirens, the Fallen Angel of the Morning and the King of the Lotus Eaters.” Also horrifying: a gallery peep show/freak show, anal ring toss, art orgy, Zombie Go-Go’s, Gypsy fortuneteller, costume contest, prizes, live music, dancing, drinking, performance art and a cavalcade of special guests including gay comedians. Highways Performance Space, 1651 18th St., Santa Monica; Fri.-Sat., Oct. 26-27, 8:30 p.m.; $20, $15 students. (310) 315-1459.
SATURDAY, October 27
Rated G fun is all the rage at Halloween Harvest Festival,which provides good old-fashioned Halloween delights: a corn maze where you can pretend not to panic as kiddies scream in glee while running into numerous dead ends, a haunted house, and a haunted trail. After dark, things turn a little more menacing with the Factory of Nightmares, Sinister Dreadford’s Mansion of Lost Souls. Pierce College, 6498 DeSoto Ave., Woodland Hills; thru Nov. 4; $4 festival admission; corn maze is $10 adults, $6 children; costs vary for other rides & attractions in what is definitely the most confusing pricing plan in Halloween history. (818) 999-6300.
Shipwreck at the Queen Scary, which is rumored to be haunted any time of year, has seven dizzying mazes, including the 3-D House of Hallucinations, that are gonna put you through the spin cycle. Walk through its dark decks and corridors, but watch out for the “monsters, mutants and maniacs” hiding at every turn. After the demons have been exorcised from your body, join the danceparty at Exhibit Hall with live bands pounding your skull. Queen Mary, 1126 Queens Hwy., Long Beach; Oct. 26-28 & 30-31, 7 p.m.-mid.; $35 (not recommended for children under 12; no costumes allowed). (562) 435-3511.
Salvador Dalí loved Halloween, even though the only costume he could ever come up with was a pirate. He would have loved LACMA’s Muse Costume Ball, where “spooky meets surreal” and the drinks are Dalí-tinis and the music is by Dublab Sound System. It all takes place in the penthouse and includes a special viewing of “Dalí: Painting and Film.” After a few Dalí-tinis, you’ll start to see the world as ol’ Salvador did. LACMA, 5905 Wilshire Blvd., L.A.; Sat., Oct. 27, 8 p.m.-mid.; $30, $50 pair. (323) 857-6010.
If you make it to morning after American Cinematheque’s Dusk-to-Dawn Horrorthon, you will have sat through Return of the Living Dead, Freaks, From Beyond, Last House on the Left, The Children and The Gates of Hell. Breakfast will then be served, and you will go home and fall asleep to Teletubbies reruns. Aero Theatre, 1328 Montana Ave., Santa Monica; Sat., Oct. 27, 7:30 p.m.-6 a.m.; $12, $10 students & seniors. (323) 466-FILM.
SUNDAY, October 28
If you’d rather do all the work, there’s the Haunted Hollywood Scavenger Hunt, which promises you’ll “discover things like whose carriage and horses left his funeral procession and took off along his favorite walking path.” Meeting place in Hollywood will be e-mailed to you; Fri.-Sun, Oct. 26-28, 5:30-8 p.m.; Tues.-Wed., Oct. 26-31, 5:30-8 p.m.; $25. www.outoftheboxevents.net.
Prizes for Scariest Costume, Best Look-Alike, Most Creative, Most Colorful and Best Costume will be awarded to man’s best friends at West Hollywood’s Annual Doggy Costume Contest. There’s got be something funny to say about dogs dressed up like Cher and Bruce Vilanch. West Hollywood Park, 647 N. San Vicente Blvd., W. Hlywd.; Sun., Oct. 28, 1 p.m.; free. (323) 848-6496.
MONDAY, October 29
Emo Phillips in The Shredder — sorry, it’s not a Halloween show, per se, but there will be actual shredding of documents, which isn’t as cool as flesh, but still. Phillips reads material from his 30-year career, and if you, the audience, don’t laugh, it goes to shredder hell! Steve Allen Theater, 4773 Hollywood Blvd., Hlywd.; Mon., Oct. 29, 8 p.m.; $10 (also Mon., Nov. 26). (323) 666-4268.
What’s Bruce Springsteen doing in a Halloween roundup? Well, have you seen his wife lately? Seriously, he does sing about spirits in the night and darkness and other dark things at night. So there you go. L.A. Sports Arena, 3939 S. Figueroa Ave., L.A.; Mon.-Tues., Oct. 29-30, 7:30 p.m.; $65-$95. (213) 480-3232.
TUESDAY, October 30
How’s this for a hackneyed Halloween Hoopla hook? The star of one of the scariest movies ever — that would be Alfred Hitchcock’s The Birds — Tippi Hedren, speaks on her acting, producing and wildlife efforts. She’ll show clips from various screen performances, as well as from Big Cats, a documentary on the Shambala Preserve she produced with her daughter, actress Melanie Griffith. Surely she’ll be glad to share a story about those bird attacks. Screening Room (Room 235) of the SMC Academy of Entertainment & Technology, 1660 Stewart St., Santa Monica; Tues., Oct. 30, 1 p.m.; free, seating is limited. (310) 434-8278.
WEDNESDAY, October 31
Who dresses up better than West Hollywood? (Reseda, actually, but that’s another story.) Join the throngs on Santa Monica Boulevard for the West Hollywood Halloween Carnival. Please come in costume. (Suggestion: take the blinds off the window and attach to torso; wear dark glasses and carry a cane: Voila! — you’re a Blind Venetian.) If a WeHo elf hands you a bracelet, that means you’re dressed outlandish/creative enough for the costume contest finals! Santa Monica Blvd. btwn. Doheny Dr. & La Cienega Blvd.; Wed., Oct. 31, 6 p.m.-mid.; free. (323) 848-6503.
Hostess with the ghostess Lili Barsha returns with her Haunted Cabaret, this year themed “The Too Late Show,” a late-night talk show set in hell where all the guests are monsters and dead people, namely Pumpkin Head, Count Dracula, Poe on Poe, the Devil (via live remote, of corpse), President Non-Elect Bush and real Mistress of the Night Barbara Steele. As for the music, Barsha promises, “Picture the Tonight Show Band gone very wrong. As hostess, I will speak some French, perform my special version of ‘Pirate Jenny,’ screen some video from Haunted Cabs past, present an original witch dance and feature some shadow play.” Club Fais Do Do, 5257 Pico Blvd., L.A.; Wed., Oct. 31, 9 & 11 p.m.; $10, $7 in costume. (323) 805-9366.
THURSDAY, November 1
One of Los Angeles’ most important cultural contributions, along with that Sikh on Rollerblades and Beck, is Lucha VaVoom, which has been bringing the happy marriage of burlesque dancing with Mexican masked wrestlers for five years — which is a decade and a half for other cities. For Halloween, they’re presenting Luchadores Are Go! with ta-ta-shakers, Lucy Fur, Akira, Ursulina and NYC’s Leroi the Girl Boy (you figure out that one). In the ring will be Chupacabra, Cassandro, Felino and Rayman from outer space. Cracking wise all night will be Mystery Science 3000 creator Joel Hodgson, along with Dana Gould and Blaine Capatch. Mayan Theater, 1038 S. Hill St., dwntwn.; Tues.-Thurs., Oct. 30-Nov. 1, 8 p.m.; $30-$60. www.ticketweb.com.??For more Halloween happenings, see Events & Kid Stuff.