What to Do on Halloween around the Twin Cities

Celebrate scariness over the weekend—or on Tuesday, October 31—with haunted tours, a First Ave monster mash, and the last Zoo Boo

Photo by Dave Smith/Flickr


Ghosts & Graves

What: Wabasha Street Caves Tour
When: Evenings in October (check the calendar for specific dates and times)
Where: Wabasha Street Caves, 215 Wabasha Street South, St. Paul
These man-made “caves” have been used as a speakeasy, a disco venue, a hangout for gangsters (or so the legend goes), and, of course—they’re haunted. The “Lost Souls” tour guides you through the caves with eyewitness testimonies of ghost and spirit sightings, and the “Ghosts & Graves” tour is guided by a mysterious costumed figure who will also present a slideshow of ghosts caught on camera within the caves. Learn more.

Not Your Typical Ship Tour

What: William A. Irvin Haunted Ship
When: Evenings in October (check the calendar for specific dates and times)
Where: William A. Irvin Museum, 301 Harbor Drive, Duluth
The William A. Irvin, a retired ore ship turned museum, is a fixture of Duluth’s Canal Park area. Each October, the ship is transformed to highlight its haunted past, and tours take you through flickering hallways and a pitch-dark “dungeon.” The tours are self-guided, but you won’t be alone: ghosts and zombies will haunt your every step, slamming doors and causing mayhem along the way. Learn more.

Parades & Parties

Halloween Capital of the World

What: Anoka Halloween Parade
When: 1 p.m., Saturday, October 28
Where: Main Street and Fifth Avenue, Anoka
Anoka calls itself the “Halloween Capital of the World,” and its annual Halloween parade (now in its 97th year) is the largest in the state. The parade features themed floats, costumes, and treats, and opens with a fighter plane flyover. The parade is just part of a weekend of festivities that includes a haunted house, a “spooktacular” carnival, and a costume contest. Learn more.

Come As You Aren’t

What: First Avenue’s Halloween Party and Costume Contest
When: 8 p.m. Tuesday, October 31
Where: First Avenue, 701 North 1st Avenue, Minneapolis
Bring out your best costume for a chance to win part of the $1000 prize pool at this annual Halloween party hosted by legendary music venue First Avenue. Music is provided by DJ Tiiiiiiiiip (yes, that’s 10 i’s) and other local DJs. Creativity is encouraged: last year’s costume contest winners ranged from Frankenstein’s monster to a human Game Boy. This is an 18+ event. Learn more.

Family Fun

Say “Boo!” at the Zoo

What: ZooBoo
When: 4:30–7:30 p.m., Saturday, October 28 and Sunday, October 29
Where: Como Zoo, 1225 Estabrook Drive, St. Paul
Looking for a non-scary way to spend Halloween weekend? ZooBoo invites children (and their families) to this Halloween party complete with costumed characters, spooky treats and crafts, and maybe even an animal visit or two. Kids are encouraged to come in costume and bring a bag for trick-or-treating. This is your last chance to attend ZooBoo—the program is ending after this year, but Como has something new in the works for 2019. Learn more.

Folktales & Food

What: Croak: 24th Annual BareBones Halloween Puppet Extravaganza
When: 7 p.m. Friday, October 27; Saturday, October 28; Sunday, October 29; Tuesday, October 31
Where: Hidden Falls Regional Park, 1305 South Mississippi River Boulevard, St. Paul
This family-friendly Halloween event is a unique outdoor performance experience that combines puppetry, music, fire, stilt walkers, and drama to retell myths and folktales. Stay after the show for hot food and drinks, as well as dancing with live music by local Americana bands. Learn more.

If Halloween isn’t your thing, check out our Weekend Best Bets for a selection of non-spooky, non-scary events.