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Bay Area Events Top Picks

Weekend guide for 10-11-2013 to 10-13-2013 by the Hauntmistress

The month is off to a great start with plenty of harvest and Halloween events throughout the Bay Area. Here are our Top Picks for things to do this second weekend in October.

In Hayward, the Meek Mansion offers up Shrouded Tales on Oct. 11 and 12. Tour the mansion and learn about true tales of tragic ends, Victorian death traditions, and superstitions all sprinkled with a touch of the paranormal.

Oct. 11-13 celebrate Petaluma Harvest Days. Events will take place at various merchant locations all three days. There will be cheese tasting, wine grape tasting, pie tasting, pumpkin decorating, delectable Harvest menus, a cupcake cook off, a bake sale, and more.

On Oct. 12 San Jose offers up Pumpkins in the Park, a harvest fair for families designed to promote awareness of the Guadalupe River Park and celebrate the fall season. The fun includes a giant pumpkin patch, costume parade, scarecrows, fresh apple cider, lots of free activities for kids, a children’s concert, and more!

Further south, in San Martin, the Calabash Gourd Festival on Oct. 12-13 features classes for kids and adults, demonstrations, vendors, exhibits, and great gourd art for sale by local artists! As an added bonus, it’s held at the beautiful Uesugi Farms Pumpkin Park with its acres of gorgeous pumpkins!

The Phoenix Theater in San Francisco plays host to The Disappearance of Mary Rosemary running Oct. 11-13, 17-20 and 24-26. In this play, a family holiday is disrupted by the mysterious disappearance of their little girl, Mary Rose. Reunited with her family but with no memory of what transpired, the riddle haunts the family for years to come, sparking off a dark adventure into love, loss, ghosts, and the living. Adapted from the acclaimed play by JM Barrie (author of Peter Pan), The Disappearance of Mary Rosemary is an old-fashioned, spine-tingling tale perfect for a chilly Autumn evening.

Also playing in San Francisco is Carrie the Musical on Oct. 11-12, 16-19, 23-26, 30-Nov. 2. Based on Stephen King’s best-selling novel, Carrie The Musical hasn’t been seen much since its legendary 1988 Broadway production. Now, the show’s original authors have reworked and fully re-imagined this gripping tale performed by Ray of Light Theatre.

If you’re in the mood for something even more macabre, head over to the Hypnodrome for Shocktoberfest 14: Jack the Ripper, running Oct. 11-12, 17-19, 24-26, 31-Nov. 2, 7-9, 14-16, 21-23. Shocktoberfest is presented by Thrillpeddlers, who have been performing authentic Grand Guignol horror plays, outrageous Theatre of the Ridiculous musicals, and spine-tingling lights-out spookshows in San Francisco for nearly 20 years.

If improve is more your style, try Improvised Horror Musical in San Francisco on Oct. 13 (also Oct. 20 and 27), brought to you by BATS Improv. Taking inspiration from your suggestions and from classic horror films like Alien, Poltergeist, and The Exorcist, where emotions run high and everything is a matter of life and death, a talented cast of improvisers and musicians create a completely improvised and frightfully delightful, full-length improvised musical. Everything from the plot, to the score, the lyrics, to the characters will be created on the spot!

On Oct. 13, don’t miss a free walking tour of Alfred Hitchcock’s San Francisco. The Master of Suspense loved San Francisco and used its beauty, elegance, and mystery to great effect in several films. From Nob Hill to Union Square, you’ll see some of the hotels, clubs, retail stores, and other locations featured in Vertigo and other Hitchcock classics. You’ll hear why Hitchcock chose them and how he filmed them. And you’ll learn about their history, architecture, and the stories they tell about the San Francisco of 50 years ago and today. After the tour head over to the Castro Theatre for a double feature of Hitchcock’s Psycho and Marnie!

Finally, if you’re in the Sacramento area, don’t miss the Zombie Train running down the tracks on Oct. 11-13. Brought to you by the Sacramento River Train, this one-of-a-kind experience arms passengers with laser rifles to pick-off zombies walking along the tracks. Guests can either jump aboard for the ride or purchase an upgraded ticket that includes a laser gun and a place among the Zombie Train Militia. The show is during the first 75 minutes of the 2-hour train ride. During the last 45 minutes guests can interact, take photos, and return to Sacramento zombie free.

There are many more activities happening around the extended Bay Area, including trick or treat events sponsored by cities and shopping malls! Check out our map of pumpkin patches and haunted houses or our Events Calendar.


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