Escape the norm

The city of New Orleans is on fire during October as it gears up to celebrate Halloween. Across the city, dozens of events will be taking place from now until Oct. 31. Here is some ghastly fun that might be of interest:

Haunted History Tours ($17 student rate)

Daily and Nightly

A nationally-famed activity, the Haunted History tours offer a look at some of the city’s gothic hotspots. Tour goers can choose from Ghost, Vampire, Voodoo and Cemetery tours. Call (504) 861-2727 to find out about meeting and departure locations.

House of Shock ($18)

Every Fri., Sat., Sun. and Oct. 30 – 31

319 Butterworth St. Jefferson (underneath the Huey P. Long Bridge)

For the past 14 years, House of Shock has remained one of the city’s freakiest events of the Halloween season. With a haunted house, food, drinks and an outdoor stage spectacle, it attracts revelers of all kinds. If horror is what you seek, head over to the east bank for the “shock” of your life.

Ghosts in the Oaks ($15)

Oct. 19

City Park’s Carousel Gardens Amusement Park

For some Halloween fun that’s not so scary, visit City Park’s annual Ghosts in the Oaks event. For one price, you’ll be treated to rides, food, games and fun all evening. Trick-or-treating will also take place around the Storyland and Carousel Gardens areas of the Park.

Boo at the Zoo ($13-$15)

Oct. 26 – 28

The Audubon Zoo

Hosted by ABC26/ CW38, the annual Boo at the Zoo in Audubon Park plays host to a wide-variety of Halloween family fun. Dress up in your best costume and visit for a night of trick-or-treating, games, a haunted house, light show and the Ghost Train. Tickets are on sale now and only a limited number will be up for sale. Dial (504) 581-4629 for more information.

If ghouls and goblins are not what you seek, here is a brief overview of other events to note happening around the Crescent City:

The Crescent City Blues

Festival (Free)

Oct. 19 – 20

Lafayette Square Park

Hosted by the New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Foundation, the 2nd annual Blues Festival already has the stage set for performances from a spread of well-known jazz and blues musicians including Bobby “Blue” Bland, Marva Wright and the Grammy-nominated Tab Benoit. The event is free and this year will pay tribute to the New Orleans Police Department.

Voodoo Music Experience ($40 – day; $60 – entire weekend),Oct. 26 – 28, City Park

The Voodoo Music Festival will be live and loud as usual in City Park. This year the Festival host musicians such as Common, Gym Class Heroes and Fall Out Boy and even some locals like Irma Thomas and the Preservation Hall Jazz Band. For ticket information, visit

Smithsonian Magazine Culture Fest (Prices vary)

Oct. 26 – 28

Multiple Locations

Learn a little about Louisiana food, music and historic culture at the Smithsonian Magazine hosted CultureFest. Over the three-day event, festival goers will be treated to a showcase of seminars, tours, movies and other events about the history of Louisiana including a walking tour through one of the city’s most famous cemeteries and a luncheon with famed Chef Leah Chase at her Dooky Chase restaurant. To learn more about the festival and its events, please see the official Smithsonian website at

With so many activities and events to choose from, everyone should have a fun-filled October.