Haunting Halloween possibilities cast a spell
Visit the 3D Clown Asylum on Fright Nights at I.C. Light Amphitheatre or the electric chair and guillotine at Hilltop Hose, Harrison, for screams.
Or, take the kids to see owls, bats, raccoons and the like at the Pittsburgh Zoo & Aquarium ZooBoo or Beechwood Farm's Creatures of the Night.
This year's haunted attractions feature something for everyone, with fright factors ranging from mild to wild.
Dark Hole, haunted house, 3D Clown Asylum, rides and more. 7 to 11 p.m. Sundays through Thursdays; 7 p.m. to midnight Fridays and Saturdays. Through Oct. 31. $12. I.C. Light Amphitheatre, Station Square. 412-232-6200.
Old Sherrett School House Haunted House
Dungeon, witches, night creatures, phantoms, ghosts and A Grave Matter. 7 to 10 p.m. Oct. 26 through 28. $5; $3 for ages 11 and younger. Also a pumpkin patch, $2. Benefits Washington Township Memorial Park and Fire Department. Old Sherrett School House, Washington Township (Route 268 to Cowansville, turn onto Sherrett Road at Tatter's Tavern).
West Deer Volunteer Fire Department changes into a spooky haunted house. 7 p.m. to midnight Friday through Sunday; Oct. 19 through 21 and 26 through 28. $8. West Deer Volunteer Fire Department, Saxonburg Boulevard, off Route 910. 724-265-1248.
Hilltop Hose Haunted House
Electric chair, guillotine, haunted forest, casket room and truck room. 7 to 11 p.m. Fridays and Saturdays through Oct. 27; 6 to 9 p.m. Oct. 21 and 28. $5; $3 for children younger than 12. Hilltop Hose Volunteer Fire Department, Idaho Avenue and Cambridge Street, Natrona Heights, Harrison. 724-226-9948.
Phantoms in the Park
Benefits Make-A-Wish. Through Oct. 30. 7 to 10 p.m. weekdays; 7 to 11 p.m. weekends; closed Mondays except Oct. 29. $7. 100 Acre Drive, South Park. 412-854-4156. www.phantomsinthepark.com
Spooky Hollow Haunted Trail
Horse rides, hayrides and food beginning at 5 p.m. Fridays and Saturdays, through Oct. 27. Trail begins at dark, ends at 11 p.m. $6. Lernerville Speedway, Buffalo Township. 724-285-3104.
Terrors By The Lake
Benefits Make-A-Wish. Through Oct. 31. 7:13 to 10 p.m. Tuesdays through Thursdays and Sundays; 7:13 to 11 p.m. Fridays and Saturdays; closed Mondays. $6. Pearce Mill Road, North Park. 724-934-HELL.
Tri-City Jaycees Haunted House
Space-alien themed haunted house. Thursdays through Sundays; daily Oct. 24 through 31. 7 to 11 p.m. weekdays; 7 p.m. to midnight weekends. $5. United Chevrolet, New Kensington. 724-337-0907.
The USS Nightmare
A 20-minute tour of a haunted boat with more than 30 rooms of exhibits and mazes. Thursdays through Sundays, tonight through Oct. 28; also Oct. 30 and 31. 6:30 p.m. to 12:30 a.m. Fridays and Saturdays; 6:30 to 11 p.m. Thursdays and Sundays and Oct. 30 and 31. $12. Children younger than 12 not admitted unless accompanied by parent or guardian. Gateway Clipper Fleet, Station Square. 412-355-7944.
Frightful family fun
KDKA ZooBoo for Kids' Sake
There is a haunted house in the Niches of the World exhibit for older kids; young ones can make crafts and listen to stories in the Pumpkin Patch in Kids Kingdom. The Halloween Train Ride screams of fun for all ages, and the 40-foot bat flyaway exhibit, which houses more than 200 bats, will be open to the public. The Monster Splash in the Aquarium features music, costumed characters and more. Fantastic Sam's will give free spooky hairdos for kids and adults. 6 to 10 p.m. Oct. 19 through 21 and 26 through 28. $3 for members; $4 for nonmembers; free admission for children younger than 2; train rides cost $1. Pittsburgh Zoo & Aquarium, Pittsburgh. 412-665-3640.
Halloween in the Enchanted Garden
Enter a world of mystery, magic and mazes in The Pittsburgh Children's Museum's Enchanted Garden from 6 to 9 p.m. Oct. 25 through 27. Find your way through the Rag Maze, where you'll encounter the Firefly Fairy and the Calliope, Queen of the Maze, who will enchant you with her mystical tale. Try to free the Mighty Eagle King from the evil wizard's spell that left him cast in iron. Match your magic and sorcery skills against Waldron the Wizard. We're Holden Puppets will perform 'Haunts, Hoots and Howls,' and cartoonist/storyteller Joe Wos will share monster stories. Then watch as master pumpkin carver Patrick McNutt transforms pumpkins into works of art. Younger children can trick-or-treat on Safety Street or climb aboard the Ghoul Bus. $6, reservations required. Old Post Office Building, Allegheny Center, North Shore. 412-322-5058.
Pumpkin Patch Trolley
Ride to the Pumpkin Patch on the Pumpkin Patch Trolley at the Pennsylvania Trolley Museum. Sing 'pumpkin carols' while taking a scenic trolley ride. Kids get to pick pumpkins and decorate them. There's also a display of scarecrows at Scarecrow Junction. 11 a.m. to 5 p.m., Saturdays and Sundays, through Oct. 21. $6; $5 for senior citizens; $4 for children ages 2 through 15. 1 Museum Road, Washington. 724-228-9256.
Creatures of the Night
Take night hikes along Beechwood Farms nature trails, where hikers will encounter some of Beechwood's nocturnal inhabitants. $5; $4 for children. Reservations required. 6:30 to 7:30 p.m. Oct. 26. Beechwood Farms Nature Reserve, 614 Dorseyville Road, Indiana Township. 412-963-6100.
Halloween Train Rides
Designed for 4- to 11-year-olds, these hourlong rides through the dark include Halloween displays, sound effects and Halloween dance music. There are no graphic displays. Passengers should dress warmly; the train cars are not heated. Make reservations early, because train rides sell out quickly. 7:30 p.m. Oct. 23 through 27 and 30 and 31. $8; $7 for senior citizens; $6 for ages 12 to 17; $4 for ages 4 to 11; free admission for children 3 and younger. Kiski Junction Railroad, 48 Railroad St., Schenley, Gilpin. 724-295-5577.
Gateway Clipper Fleet Halloween Cruises
Chiller Theater Dance Cruise: 9 p.m. Oct. 26. Costume party and prizes. Music by Sputzy & the Soul Providers. $17.
Monster Party Cruise: 11 a.m. and 1:30 p.m. Oct. 27 and 28. Friendly monsters, spooky DJ and tricky magician. Kids receive treats. $9; $6 for children.
Fright Night Cruise: 9 p.m. Oct. 27. Costume contest and prizes. $17.
Halloween Fun Fair
Storytelling, pumpkin painting, art, games, prizes and treats for kids. 6 to 8:30 p.m. Oct. 27. Boyd Community Center, 1220 Powers Run Road, O'Hara. 412-828-8566.
Halloween Happenings at Phipps
Come in costume to this family festival, which features pumpkin carving, a program on bats, storytelling and kids costume contest. 6 to 9 p.m. Oct. 27. All activities free with Conservatory admission. Phipps Conservatory and Botanical Gardens, Schenley Park. 412-321-4422.
A half-mile walk in the haunted woods. Walk through mazes and cemeteries and past ghouls, goblins and monsters. For children 8 and older. 7 to 9 p.m. Oct. 19. Free. Northmoreland Park, Allegheny Township. 724-830-3950.
Half-hour hikes along the Roaring Run Trail in Apollo. Sponsored by Apollo Memorial Library. Saturday. First group leaves at 6 p.m.; last group leaves at 8. $5 (parents or guardians admitted free). Registration: 724-478-4214.
Ghosts & Goblins 2001
A one-hour tour through haunted caverns. Also a haunted trail. 11 a.m. to 9 p.m. Saturdays and Sundays through Oct. 28. $9; $5 for ages 4 through 12; free admission for children younger than 4. Advance tickets available. Lincoln Caverns, U.S. 22, three miles west of Huntingdon. 814-643-0268 or www.lincolncaverns.com .