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Fright Card

By Janet Blaser

Halloween is that once-a-year chance to hide your real identity and explore the "other side," whether it be grim and ghastly or just good ol' trick-or-treating costumed fun. Events celebrating Halloween, Samhain, All Hallow's Eve, and the Pagan New Year span almost a full week, giving you time to be everything you've ever wanted to be--and then some.

October 26

Peruse a plethora of pumpkins at a Pumpkin Patch located outside the back door of the Haunted House on Beach Street. Operated by Skills Center volunteers. Through Oct. 29; 7pm till 10-ish.

"So many still living and so little time," growls a member of the Skeleton Crew operating Terror on Beach Street 2000, the 21-room haunted house filled with frightful sights like Retribution Electrocution, the Toxic Chamber and Tesla's Nightmare. Not recommended for those under 13. Corner of Beach and Cliff streets, Santa Cruz; 7-10pm, through Oct. 31; $9; 460.3375.

October 27

Nickelodeon Theater's Octoberfest of Horror ends with Creep Show, five tales of terror from Stephen King and George Romero. Nickelodeon Theater, 210 Lincoln St., Santa Cruz; Friday-Saturday at midnight; $6; rated R; 426.7500.

October 28

Join staff from Big Basin Redwoods State Park on a half-mile spooky night hike where real and imagined characters re-enact the haunting tale of The Missing Arm of William Waddell. Sempervirens Room, Big Basin State Park, Boulder Creek; 7pm; $3/ parking. 338.8861.

A Masquerade Ball looks for the Best and Worst Costumes, with cash prizes for both. Charmaigne Scott and Motown Express perform. Severino's, 7500 Old Dominion Court, Aptos; 8pm-midnight; no cover; 688.7300.

The members of Scriptease comedy troupe cast off a garment (or something) every time the audience catches a mistake. Spun plays afer the show; prizes for scariest, strangest and sexiest costumes. Vets Hall, 846 Front St., Santa Cruz; 8pm; $10, $5 if in costume; 429.1136.

The Eastside Parade runs from Branciforte Elementary to Gault. See page 14.

Based on ancient Druid rituals of remembering the dead and on Wiccan New Year celebrations, the 13th annual Women's Spiral Dance and Ritual Celebration features ecstatic drumming, dancing and singing. Bring percussion instruments, candles and photos of your ancestors to participate in a Circle of Remembrance. Vets Hall, 846 Front St., Santa Cruz; 8pm; $13-$20 donation; 454.0852.

The annual Good Times Ball features Tommy Castro and Coco Montoya. Cocoanut Grove Ballroom, Beach St., Santa Cruz. 8:30pm; $26 adv/$29 dr; 21 and older. 458.1100.

Dedicated to all things foolish and ghoulish, Um ... Gee ... Um presents a Halloween Improv Extravaganza show, made up on the spot from audience suggestions. Art League, 526 Broadway, Santa Cruz; 8 pm; $8-$10; 425.4447.

A Halloween Party features guitarist Terry Hiatt and a costume contest with cash prizes. Henfling's Tavern, 9450 Highway 9, Ben Lomond; 9pm; no cover; 335.1642.

If location, location, location is the key, then a Halloween Dungeon Dance held in what may be the only "dungeon" in town should be a blast. Do dress in costume--there's a contest--and be ready to dance to the sounds of Love Shack and Crazy Heart. Vets Hall, 846 Front St., Santa Cruz; 8:30-11:30 pm; $5; 688.2702.

Superbooty plays for a costume ball with cash prixes. The Catalyst, 1011 Pacific Ave., Santa Cruz; 21-and-up; $30/$32; 8:30pm doors; 423.1336/

October 29

A Halloween Blues Party features the Firebirds and a costume contest. Henfling's Tavern, 9450 Highway 9, Ben Lomond; 9pm; no cover; 335.1642.

Kids and adults of all ages can attend the first-ever Masquerade Ball hosted by the Cabrillo Dance Department. Sesnon House, Cabrillo College, 6500 Soquel Drive, Aptos; 6pm; $5-$7; 426.1923.

October 31

Costumed kids of all ages can get their photos taken for free courtesy of the 11th annual Clicks and Treats. Pictures become part of a contest in November. Cotton Tales, 1201 Pacific Ave., Santa Cruz; noon-5pm; free; 429.1956.

Shopkeepers along Pacific Avenue welcome costumed trick-or-treaters in a family-oriented Trick or Treat in Downtown Santa Cruz--until the sun goes down. Pacific Avenue, Santa Cruz; 2-5pm; free; 429.8433.

The Seabright Brewery's Halloween Party is legendary for the all-around good time had by all. This year boasts Neighborhood Night prices, a wild costume contest and What the Funk. Seabright Brewery, 519 Pacific Ave., Santa Cruz; 8:30-11:30pm; no cover; 21 and over; 426.2739.

Something Else plays dance jams. A costume contest offers cash prizes and ticket giveaways. Henfling's Tavern, 9450 Highway 9, Ben Lomond; 8pm; $7-$9; 335.1642.

The world trance grooves of Lost at Last will transport you to another level at a Bewitching Costume Ball that includes a $500 Grand Prize. Palookaville, 1133 Pacific Ave., Santa Cruz; 9pm; $15 adv/$17dr; all ages; 454.0600.

Henry Cowell Redwoods State Park offers a nonscary Halloween in the Park. Volunteers dressed in animal costumes--a raccoon, skunk and maybe a few others--will meet and greet the hopefully costumed visitors. Start at the Gift Shop at the park, Highway 9, Felton; 5-7pm; free; 335.7077.

November 4

Celebrate El Dia de los Muertos with bilingual storyteller Olga Loya in a special program geared to teenagers and adults that highlights traditions from Mexico, Puerto Rico, Colombia and the U.S. Watsonville Public Library, 310 Union St., Watsonville; 2-4pm; free; 728.6040.

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From the October 25-November 1, 2000 issue of Metro Santa Cruz.

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