Last Updated on by Jeremy
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As soon as it becomes fall in Pittsburgh, a certain ambiance comes about (and no, we're not talking about pumpkin spiced everything). This ambiance grows throughout the month of October before culminating in a holiday that is a favorite of many- Halloween.
You do not have to go far to get into the Halloween spirit in Pittsburgh, and today we wanted to share a few of the best attractions to check out during the annual festivities!
Hundred Acres Manor
As far as haunted attractions are concerned, Pittsburgh is home to several. One of the most popular is the non-profit Hundred Acres Manor, located right in the heart of South Park, whose proceeds help assist local charities.
But don't let the charity aspect fool you, this haunted house features six individual attractions that flow into one another such that as soon as the scares of one haunt finish, you're immediately ushered into the next with no reprieve. They really know how to get you.
Each year the attraction rotates two or so haunts out, so there is always something new to experience. But just keep in mind that some of the scare zones are outside so you will be exposed to the elements as well as the frights!
For those who want an even more intense haunted house, you should look no further than ScareHouse. This haunted house follows a very similar model to Hundred Acres Manor such that as soon as one themed haunt ends another begins. But unlike the outside style of Hundred Acres Manor, this one is entirely indoors for a much more intimate fright!
The attraction boasts three unique haunts (one of which changes each year at a minimum) and an intensity that often wins them national recognition for some of the best frights.
For those who want an even deeper experience, sign up for their basement haunt which is an R-rated, 18+ attraction that only allows a maximum of two victims at any time (so sign up sufficiently far in advance).
Or if you're like us and want something completely different, go for an after hours ScareHouse tour to find out how they do all the frights- but with the lights on!
ScareHouse is changing locations during the 2019 season. The Basement haunt options will be open in the Strip District. The full haunted house is expected to return in 2020 at a location to be determined.
Kennywood Phantom Fright Nights
Looking for a longer night out full of scares, rides, and potato patch fries? Consider a trip down to Kennywood's Phantom Fright Nights!
During Halloween the entirety of Kennywood is transformed into a haunted space with dedicated haunted houses, scare zones, and more. Visitors can ride many of the park's famous rides (although some can be closed due to seasonal conditions) in between the haunts, and then go back at it for more frights over the course of an evening.
The only downside to Kennywood's haunted houses (that the others above do not encounter) is that each themed haunt has its own line. So instead of waiting 30-60 minutes to get in to all of the experiences, you'll likely find yourself repeating the lines for every haunt you visit (as such, a VIP ticket may not be such a bad idea).
Huston's Haunted Hollow
Huston's Haunted Hollow is a multi-zone haunted house in the Laurel Highlands (Rockwood, PA) that follows a similar setup to ScareHouse and Hundred Acres Manor above such that one haunt immediately progresses into the next.
During my visit, the haunts followed a loose storyline as you are trying to escape the murder-filled Bruner Boarding house and then subsequently are chased by all manner of evil through the asylum, toxic wasteland, and cornfield before escaping to freedom. These are tied together with two haunted hayride segments that progress the loose storyline of the haunt while you are there.
While this particular haunted house may be slightly lower budget than others on this list, and the movie is most certainly on the campy side of horror, what I loved about this one was that some of the individual haunts are quite spacious. As you're exploring the toxic wasteland, for example, there are large stretches where you are simply wandering in the darkness- amplifying the fear in what is normally an otherwise continually onslaught of scares. (This was balanced out with the rather brief trip through the asylum, something I wished could've been made larger.)
Haunted Pittsburgh Ghost Tours
Do your horror interests revolve more around the spiritual? If so, hop on a Haunted Pittsburgh walking tour around downtown!
This walking tour operates from May to October and features ghostly stories from the other side in some of Pittsburgh's most famous landmarks.
But as we are talking about ghost stories here, we have to admit that the delivery is one of the most important parts. The guides of this walking tour know how to get right under your skin with a lasting impression you'll take home with you!
Night of the Living Dead Weekend
You may know that Night of the Living Dead was filmed in Evans City, just about 30 minutes north of Pittsburgh. But did you also know the town is home to the Living Dead Museum– dedicated to all things zombie?
Going even further, did you know that Evans City has a Living Dead festival every year (typically the first weekend of October), completely dedicated to the movie, the zombie genre, and to celebrate the filming locations throughout the region? Yes! Living Dead Weekend is one of the biggest festivities for all thing zombies, and includes screenings, celebrity panels, and tours of filming locations in the movie (to name a few).
So if you are a fan of horror on the big screen and want to transfer that over to its real-life counterparts, a trip up to Evans City for Living Dead weekend (or simply the museum outside of the weekend) is a must this Halloween season!
Halloween Themed Bars
Are you 21+ and looking for some Halloween themed libations? Don't worry, Pittsburgh has you covered there too!
Pittsburgh's resident Halloween bar, Jekyl & Hyde, is located in Southside and celebrates this annual holiday year-round. From there, a number of pop-ups have opened in recent years as well! ScareHouse gets into the libations fun with a Zombie pop-up bar, aptly named the Zombie Den, in Market Square in downtown Pittsburgh, and Spencer Warren is getting in on the fun with Cocktails from the Crypt in South Side!
Halloween fun in a glass? Sign us up.
ZooBoo at the Pittsburgh Zoo
Okay, fine, we have to feature one tame Halloween option to round out this list, and while there are a number of Halloween options out there for the little ones, none is more popular than ZooBoo at the Pittsburgh Zoo.
This one takes place the two weekends before Halloween (Saturdays and Sundays) to provide a day time trick-or-treat option for children as well as non-scary ‘haunts' to get into the spirit all the same.
So whether you simply want to introduce a young one to the holiday or use them as an excuse to not be scared out of your mind, ZooBoo is a great option to consider!
So, where will you be going for your next haunted experience in Pittsburgh? Comment below to let us know about it!