Subjecting oneself to terror, in a controlled and consequence-free setting, is one of life's great joys, and one amongst many reasons that Halloween is, in fact, the best holiday. You can treat your lizard brain to a tidy shot of adrenaline (or take actual shots) with the help of these Seattle area Halloween attractions.
The Cresswell Club, a ghost story reading group, made its way to Seattle from New York City, and continues its Halloween and Walpurgis Night tradition via the King County Library system. Among the tales of horror and the occult shared are selections from the library’s Terrifying Tales short story contest. Free
Elysian is partnering with Georgetown Morgue to deliver the goods–quite literally. Scare actors from one of Seattle's most established haunted houses drop off Elysian's pumpkin variety six-pack on your doorstep with frightful panache.
The Morgue distinguishes itself from other haunted houses with its world-building and theatrical panache–no riffling around, blindfolded, in bowls of cold spaghetti. A slurry of unconfirmed, sensational rumors of murder and the supernatural surrounds the building itself, which was the site of a former mortuary and crematorium. $30
The owner-operators of this Pioneer Square ghost tour emphasize their local insight and knowledge of the city’s history, examining everything from Victorian mysticism and the occult to the Klondike Gold Rush. $18
Straddling a very sweet line between LARPing/Renaissance Faire and haunted house, this forest trail at Grand Farms in Vaughn promises to be littered with grotesque medieval terrors and warns that even souls cannot survive in the utter darkness of these woods. $28
No, this isn't a subprime mortgage–themed haunted house (now that's too scary). Belltown tropical cocktail haunt Navy Strength becomes an actual haunt for the month of October, with themed beverages based on your favorite horror films like the black tea and pear brandy–infused Mister Babadook.
One of the campier options, Nile Nightmares at Nile Shrine Center offers six haunted attractions that run the gamut of classic horror tropes—laboratory, circus, slaughterhouse, you get the idea—and three escape room puzzle games. $25
Idyllic pumpkin patch by day, Stocker Farms transforms into an amygdala-tickling horror show at nightfall, notable for its clown-heavy repertoire. Clown shot paintball provides the opportunity to seek your revenge. $21.95
Can Can Production’s adaptation of The Nightmare Before Christmas, running at the Triple Door, features a Jack Skellington who has become disenchanted with his life’s work of scaring people. An encounter with Christmas Town sets him on a new spooky path. $45
Tacoma’s iconic house of horrors implores you to leave your everyday existential dread and doomscrolling behind in favor of a much more fun sense of impending doom. Sanitariums, orphanages, and cults all factor into the haunt’s storytelling, and the station also offers an interactive, choose-your-own-misadventure-style film entitled Abomination. $18
This Capitol Hill bar serves a wide range of craft pours in an imposing former funeral home. The bar and most of the tables are made from reclaimed oak coffins, and the employees are more than happy to share stories about mysterious cold spots throughout the building or customers who never came back from the bathroom (impossible that they could have simply been throwing up in the alley).