The Mesa Press guide to a safe and spooktacular Halloween in 2020

Halloween+decorations+in+full+effect

Christian Randolph

Halloween decorations in full effect

Kaitlin Clapinski, News Editor

This Halloween, masked costumes will be a little more favorable than ever. COVID-19 and the fear of contracting the virus is a concern for many going into this holiday season. This year, San Diego has multiple opportunities for a safe scare, perfect for those looking to celebrate while still following city and state protocol. 

A pumpkin patch is essential for the annual autumnal Instagram post and Bates Nut Farm in Valley Center opened their pumpkin patch to the public on Oct. 1 and will remain open until the end of the month. Of course, masks and social distancing are required. The event has free admission during select times and features different activities and food vendors. Some of the activities featured on the Patch include a petting zoo, pony rides, tractor hay rides, and a straw maze. Select food vendors are available on certain dates and more information on that and on the event can be found here.

If you’re looking to get your heart rate up, the Scream Zone will be hosting a drive-thru course in Del Mar over the month of October. The courses, all done in the comfort of one’s car, have different themes based on iconic scary movies. Rates begin at $45 for a vehicle of up to four occupants, and they recommend buying tickets ahead of time. 

More of a history buff? The Whaley House, located in Old Town, is hosting a “Ghost and Gravestones” tour showing off San Diego’s most haunted attractions. The tour takes patrons around the city of San Diego visiting multiple ghost hot spots. Currently, they are seating guests on the “Trolley of the Doomed,” at 50% capacity with tickets starting at $30 a piece. To make a reservation, the website can be found here

For the whole month of October, the Birch Aquarium at Scripps is featuring a “Haunted Remix,” geared toward children aged 2 to 10 and perfect for a family night out. The aquarium is open from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. every day, with the event included in the admission price. Costumes are encouraged for younger guests who will be learning about “slimy seaweed, several species of small sharks and creepy, crawly, critters like Sea Spiders.” Tickets can be found here.

On the contrary, for those who are not interested in going to events but would still like to get into the spirit, Mr. Jack O’ Lanterns Pumpkin Patch in La Jolla will be offering curbside pickup and delivery for pumpkins all month long. They also have pumpkin decorating kits available online ideal for an immaculate date night. More information on Mr. Jack’ O Lanterns Pumpkin Patch can be found here.

More Halloween family fun can be found at Legoland hosting their “Halloween in Miniland,” event until the end of October. The event features a Halloween-themed outdoor dining and retail experience packed with all the Legos imaginable. Perfect for kids, the event will include socially distanced activities geared for the whole family. Tickets and reservations are required and begin at $19.99 per person.

The success of these socially distanced events will be key this fall and going into winter, especially with Thanksgiving and Christmas just around the corner. Although the situation isn’t ideal, the holiday season can still be enjoyable and safe.