5 ways to celebrate Halloween around Sacramento

Armed with mock weapons, Ron Chappell and other riders watch for “zombies” during the 2013 Zombie Train ride along the Sacramento River from West Sacramento towards Woodland.
Armed with mock weapons, Ron Chappell and other riders watch for “zombies” during the 2013 Zombie Train ride along the Sacramento River from West Sacramento towards Woodland. Sacramento Bee file

There might not be another holiday that can be celebrated in as many ways as Halloween can.

It doesn’t matter how old you are, either, because you’re likely to be drawn into the festivities in some capacity or another.

For most, it starts with trick-or-treating, carving pumpkins, watching scary movies, visiting haunted houses or simply dressing up and partying.

No matter that the 16 Lantern Tours at the Sacramento Historic City Cemetery have sold out (as they perpetually do). Sacramento offers a seemingly endless array of other events to celebrate and help get in the Halloween spirit.

Here are five of our favorites this year to haunt around the area.

Haunted fort

There is always an added layer of suspense to anything based on a true story. For the fifth year, the Haunted Fort at Sutter’s Fort Historic State Park is offering lantern-lit guided tours. The fort serves as a gateway for the spirits of some of California’s earliest settlers. This year’s theme, “Trials and Tribulations,” brings the unusual and eerie deaths of those pioneers to life. It is a family-friendly event, but it might be a little too much for very young children.

When: Oct. 24-25 from 6:30-9 p.m.; tours depart every 10 minutes.

Where: Sutter’s Fort Historic State Park, 2701 L St., midtown Sacramento

Cost: $8 per adult, $6 for youths ages 6-17 and free for children 5 years and under

Information:, (916) 323-7626

Grave Digger’s Ball

How could you not have a good time at the first Grave Digger’s Ball? This 21-and-up event, hosted by KSFM 102.5, boasts multiple parties that feature a different genre of music in each room of the Sacramento Convention Center. The retro room will feature ’80s and ’90s music along with a $5,000 costume contest for guests. The EDM room will showcase artists Cataracs, Nick G, and guest DJ Taryn Manning from “Orange Is the New Black.” Country music lovers will find solace in the country saloon line-dancing to local cover band Sweet Revenge or taking a chance on a mechanical bull. To top it off, there will also be a haunted house with six different tours and mazes.

When: Oct. 31

Where: Sacramento Convention Center, 1400 J St., Sacramento

Cost: $34


Scream Park California

Visitors to Scream Park California must plot their way through spectacles in an insane asylum, or embark on a simulated acid trip gone horribly wrong. While there are no age requirements, according to the website, the three haunted houses are “practically a human rights violation.” To settle your nerves, the theme park features live entertainment and rock, metal, and punk concerts with artists like Fallrise, Restrayned, Some Fear None and Pushing the Sun.

When: On select nights through Nov.2, 7 p.m. to 10 p.m. or midnight (check website for specifics)

Where: 4909 Auburn Blvd., Sacramento

Cost: $20-$40


Zombie Train

The Zombie Train – an addition in recent years to the Sacramento River Train – provides an interactive experience in a post-apocalyptic scenario. The living dead chase the train during the two-hour trip with an insatiable appetite for human flesh. As a spotter, you are along for the ride and show. For a premium, you’ll be armed with a laser rifle to be a gunner with the train’s militia.

When: Oct. 24-25, 30-31; Nov. 14-15

Where: 400 N. Harbor, West Sacramento

Cost: $35-$50


Callson Manor

The staff of Callson Manor combines detailed animatronic creatures and special effects. This Halloween theme park features nine attractions on its 2.5 acres of land that test the threshold of fear. While you give your nerves a break, you can enjoy Bubba’s BBQ and watch fire dancing by Obsidian Butterfly in the courtyard.

When: 7:30-10 p.m. on select dates (go to for dates)

Where: Placer County Fairgrounds, 800 All America City Blvd., Roseville

Cost: $26-$60