It’s about that time again. The air gets a little chilly and folks are a little more susceptible to a good fright. … Boo!
OK, maybe not that susceptible, but a good haunted house, field or even hospital can make things downright creepy for the most stoic of Halloween fans.
This year, Montgomery and Prince George’s counties in Maryland and Fairfax County in Virginia are filled with things that go bump in the night. Here is just a small sampling of what’s around. Be sure to visit our website at www.gazette.net and fairfaxtimes.com for updated haunted attractions in the area.
Markoff’s Haunted Forest (19120 Martinsburg Road, Dickerson, 301-216-1248, Oct. 4-5, 11-12, 17-19, 24-26, Oct. 31 to Nov. 2, $20 and up) — Much like with the hot sauces with the little skull and crossbones on the label, you’ll have to sign a waiver to wander through Markoff’s Haunted Forest. You don’t have to be a connoisseur of the macabre to enjoy your time there, however. Markoff’s will have a variety of attractions, from zip-lines, strongman challenges, concessions, high wire acts, carnival games and flaming flying Frisbees. Careful with that last one! markoffshauntedforest.com
Field of Screams/Scream City (4501 Olney-Laytonsville Road., Olney, now through Nov. 2, $10 - $84) — One of the great things about this time of year is the selection of different scares horror enthusiasts get to enjoy. At Field of Screams, folks can choose from a haunted hayride, a haunted house, a haunted trail or a haunted paintball apocalypse with zombies — any way you look at it, it’s haunting! screams.org
Fall Frolic (Glen Echo Park, 7300 MacArthur Blvd., Glen Echo, 301-634-2222, Oct. 27, admission is free) — While some enjoy the heart-stopping shrieks from ghosts and ghouls, others prefer their spookiness to be as minimal as possible, especially if there are children involved. Glen Echo Park has you covered with its Fall Frolic. Visitors of all ages are invited to participate in Halloween activities, crafts and even a costume parade. Adults might enjoy visiting the park’s open studios and galleries. There is a small fee for pumpkin decorating ($1) and face painting ($1-$2). Otherwise the event is free and runs from 1 p.m. until 4 p.m. glenechopark.org
Halloween at the Medical Museum (National Museum of Health and Medicine, 2500 Linden Lane, Silver Spring, 301-319-3303, Oct. 26, free) — Contrary to what some adults might say, Halloween really is a great time of year for children. The folks over at the National Museum of Health and Medicine understand that some children might be intrigued by the “creepiness” of skulls! The museum invites children and family members of all ages to participate in an evening dedicated to all things skulls. medicalmuseum.mil
Six Flags America Fright Fest (13710 Central Ave., Largo, $34.99-$49.99, 301-249-1500) — Evil clowns, terrifying roller coasters and sinister zombies … what else do you need for a great Halloween? Six Flag America’s yearly Fright Fest has more events than you could possibly shake a full bag of candy at — from the time you walk into the park until the time you leave. The festivities begin on Saturday and run through Oct. 27, so get your goosebumps before it’s over. frightfest.sixflags.com
Nightmares (4101 Crain Highway, Bowie, $15 in advance, $17 at the gate) — What’s scarier than a haunted house? How about a haunted minor league baseball stadium? Have you ever been inside a baseball stadium when no one was there? It can be a little creepy. Tack on the ghosts that haunt the place and yeah, you’ll have nightmares. That’s pretty much what the folks at Prince George’s Stadium are going for. The Tulip Gulch’s Nightmares Haunted House, which they rate a PG-13 experience, features live actors and takes about 20 minutes to walk through — 20 minutes of evil! Gates open at 6:30 p.m. and the show runs until 11 p.m. The haunted house is entirely indoors so you don’t have to worry about the rain. The event starts on Oct. 4 and runs every Friday and Saturday from then until Oct. 26, and then Halloween night until Nov. 2. baysox.com
Haunted Hangar (College Park Aviation Museum, 1985 Cpl. Frank Scott Drive, College Park, 301-864-6029, Oct. 26, $4, $3 seniors 60+, $2 ages 2-18, 1 and under free) — Halloween fun can be had by all at the College Park Aviation Museum. The Haunted Hangar event, from 7 p.m. until 9 p.m., will have arts and crafts, hayrides and spooky fun for the whole family. collegeparkaviationmuseum.com
Terrorville (39835 New Road, Aldie, Va., 571-969-4887, Oct. 11-12, 18-19, 25-26, free to $30) Billed as the biggest Halloween theme park in Northern Virginia, Terrorville has several terrifying attractions, and they also have the ever-popular Zombie Paintball Shoot ($30), the Walk of Terror, which features a hayride ($20), and Monster Encounter ($5) which is touted as a kid-friendly experience. Hauntedterrorville.com
Blood and Guts Run (Bull Run Regional Park, 7700 Bull Run Dr., Centreville, Va., 571-969-4887, Oct. 26, $79 plus $5.34 fee) Well, if you’re going to run away from zombies, you might as well get some exercise while you’re at it. The Blood and Guts Run is a 5K obstacle course where runners will have to overcome the obstacles as well as dodge zombies. Did you enjoy shooting the zombies with the paintballs? Well, here they get to shoot you with water guns filled with fake blood. Ha! But if you make it through alive — from the zombies, as well as the actual running — you’ll get a custom T-shirt and a medal. bloodandgutsrun.com
Ghost Train Rides (Burke Lake Park, 7315 Ox Road, Fairfax Station, Oct. 26-27, 703-323-6600) Sure, you’ve got hayrides and the like, but a train? Come on, that’s gotta be cool, right? Ghost train rides will be going on from 11:15 a.m. until 5:45 p.m. on Oct. 26-27. The Great Pumpkin, I hear, might make an appearance to hand out treats. This is definitely one the kiddies will enjoy. fairfaxcounty.gov/parks/burkelakepark/rides.htm