As October days and nights creep their way to Halloween, weekend events involving haunts, costumes, scares and general eeriness start to pick up. Here’s a look at what this weekend offers as well as early notice of what’s coming next, from midnight looks at funerals by candlelight, haunted houses and the costumed campiness of “Rocky Horror Picture Show” cultists.
“Sitting Up With The Dead,” 11 p.m.-1 a.m. Saturday, McCulloch House, 407 Columbus Ave.; $20.
The Historic Waco Foundation brings back its look at bygone funeral practices with its “Victorian Funeral and Spiritualism Midnight Tour” at the McCulloch House.
The candlelit tour introduces visitors to 19th century funeral practices: the dead person’s coffin in the living room for family and visitors to pay their respects; flowers in the room to mask scent; black cloths over mirrors, photographs and portraits; and embalming equipment brought to the home.
Saturday’s tour will put a mannequin in the coffin, with another mannequin dressed in black “widow’s weeds,” and a docent dressed as an undertaker will show the tools of his trade and a portable embalming table. Other parts of the tour address the Victorian period interest in spiritualism. One room will feature a tarot card reader and there will be an Ouija board set up. Vivian Rutherford of the Heart of Texas Storytelling Guild will spin appropriately eerie stories.
“It’s an interesting evening, not any trick or treating, or scary/spooky,” said HWF director Jill Barrow. “But it’s kind of creepy.”
Waco Haunted Houses, 8 p.m.-midnight Friday-Saturday, 8 p.m.-midnight nightly Oct. 26-31, Exit 345, Interstate 35; $22, $13 for those 10 and younger.
The Waco-area’s longest running haunted houses, Deadzone and Chainsaw Massacre, continue their October tradition of weekend night frights that shift into nightly overdrive the week leading to Halloween.
Those who come in costume this Friday and Saturday night get a $2 discount on admission with nightly hauntings starting Oct. 26. The houses are located north of Elm Mott near Ross, off Exit 345 Interstate 35 North.
Fright Night at the Rite 2.0, Adults Only Night, 7 p.m.-1 a.m. Oct. 26, Family Night, 4 p.m.-midnight Oct. 27, Lee Lockwood Library and Museum, 2801 W. Waco Drive. Admission is $25 for Adults Only Night; Family Night $15 for adults, $8 for students 8 and older, with $15 activity armbands.
A new addition to the Waco Halloween landscape is next weekend’s “Fright Night at the Rite” at the Lee Lockwood Library and Museum. The event comes in two flavors, an Adults Only Night on Oct. 26, followed by a Family Night on Oct. 27.
The former features a Ghostly Gala with appetizers, cash bar, DJ and 10 p.m. costume contest with $100 top prize. There’s a haunted maze in the basement and the McLennan County Paranormal Investigators will make an appearance — or perhaps detect a spectral one.
The Family Night will feature carnival games, a bounce house, a haunted house and costume contests at 6 and 10 p.m. The Waco Children’s Theater also will stage “The Land The Living Forgot” at 5, 7 and 9 p.m.
Proceeds from Fright Night at the Rite 2.0 will benefit the Lee Lockwood Library and Museum.
“Rocky Horror Picture Show” shadowcast by Waco Warp, 9 p.m. Friday and Saturday, Brazos Theatre, 7524 Bosque Blvd. Suite Q; $15.50 and $13.50, $5.50 for props bag. “Rocky Horror Picture Show” midnight shadowcast, 11:45 p.m. Oct. 26-27, Waco Hippodrome, 724 Austin Ave.; $10.
The combination of grown-ups and costumes has made the cult film “Rocky Horror Picture Show” a part of many Halloween seasons. Waco “Rocky Horror” fans can get two-weekends’ worth, thanks to two shadowcast groups.
Waco Warp will do their shadowcast, where live action on stage mirrors the on-screen action, at 9 p.m. Friday and Saturday at Brazos Theatre. The following weekend, Waco Civic Theatre actors and others will lead their midnight shadowcasts Oct. 26 and 27 at the Waco Hippodrome.