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ARTS & ENTERTAINMENT

Eight of the Spookiest Events Happening in Sydney This Halloween

From a pop-up bar in crocodile den to a dress-up party with devilish drag stars, here's where to get your scares this Halloween.
By Rachel Fieldhouse and Concrete Playground
October 25, 2020
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Eight of the Spookiest Events Happening in Sydney This Halloween

From a pop-up bar in crocodile den to a dress-up party with devilish drag stars, here's where to get your scares this Halloween.
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EIGHT OF THE SPOOKIEST EVENTS HAPPENING IN SYDNEY THIS HALLOWEEN

From a pop-up bar in crocodile den to a dress-up party with devilish drag stars, here's where to get your scares this Halloween.

There's something for everyone to get around when it comes to Halloween, whether it's eating nauseating amounts of lollies, flexing your arts and crafts skills and fashioning yourself a costume, or pulling that five-piece (mask included) Batman get-up out of storage and donning it to feel like the superhero you really are.

Trick or treating never really caught on here, but we'll be damned if we won't use it as an excuse for a spooky time. There are plenty of parties, tours and immersive events happening around town for you to get amongst. Here's a list of some of the best things going on in Sydney for Halloween, ranging from the not-so scary (sour apple margaritas) to the truly terrifying (a spine-tingling takeover of Luna Park).

  • 8
    A Night of Decadence & Indulgence

    Bondi’s Icebergs is usually known for its stunning beach views and breezy blue and white palette, but, this Halloween, it’ll transform into a haunting scene from a Stanley Kubrick film for a decadent and slightly spooky dinner.

    Taking place on Saturday, October 31, the extravagant evening will include a seven-course meal, theatrical cocktails and an intimate performance by Sneaky Sound System. And it comes with a fairly extravagant price tag, too: $400 a head.

    If you’ve got that kind of money to drop on a fun night out — we’re not currently spending any cash on overseas jaunts, after all — read on. At the dinner, you’ll eat your way through the likes of coral trout tartare with green ants, David Blackmore wagyu bresaola with pig’s blood crackers, squid ink spaghetti, suckling pig and truffle salad all created by Head Chef Alex Prichard. You certainly won’t be leaving hungry — or thirsty for that matter.

    While the ticket price doesn’t include drinks, a range of horror film-inspired cocktails will be on offer. Sip on a chilli-spiked watermelon drink that’s served on fire, a blood red cocktail inspired by that hallway scene from The Shining and a black gin fizz.

    The dress code is black tie, but, as it’s Halloween, a little fake blood and fangs wouldn’t go astray. Bookings are essential and can be made over here.

    READ MORE BUY TICKETS
  • 7
    Halloscream 8: Infinite Fear

    As if 2020 hasn’t already felt like a neverending horror film, the spookiest night of the year, Halloween, is just around the corner. And if you’re looking for even scarier thrills — or just a night off from watching the freak show that is the evening news — Luna Park has you sorted. Its festival of spine-tingling thrills, aptly dubbed Halloscream, is returning to the fun park after dark for six nights of frightening scares.

    This year’s theme is Infinite Fear and, with the promise of zombies and prisoners roaming throughout the park to spook you at any moment, that’s exactly what you’ll be feeling. Festivities kick off at 6pm each evening with a ‘scaremony’ led by spooky puppet master Mr Bowler. You can then make your way through the three brand-new mazes in the Big Top. First, try to keep away from an evil landlord in the Outback Butcher, then hide from zombies as you explore DecayMart, an abandoned supermarket, before heading to Block 13, a prison filled with rioting inmates. Also be sure to pay a visit to the historic Coney Island, which will be transformed into a creepy doll ‘hospital’ dubbed Lonely Doll Island.

    Your ticket will also include unlimited rides throughout the park, so prepare your vocal chords for a cracking night. Luna Park will be taking extreme safety precautions including temperature checks and enhanced cleaning measures, and masks must be worn while in the mazes.

    READ MORE BUY TICKETS
  • 6
    Croctail Pop-Up Bar

    Halloween thrills await at Wild Life Sydney Zoo this year, with real life monsters on hand to spook you and your mates. The Darling Harbour zoo is hosting a pop-up bar inside its Crocodile Den, where the guest of honour is a four-metre-long, 365-kilogram saltwater croc named Rocky.

    The night will start off with a reptile talk from the team. They’ll feed Rocky before your eyes, plus offer the chance to ‘cuddle’ a snake or lizard.

    On the bar side of things, the two-hour sittings include a house wine or beer on arrival. Additional themed tapas and cocktails by Trolley’d will be available for purchase throughout the night —and the menu will focus on native ingredients like roasted wattle, urban beehive honey and Illawarra plum vodka.

    Tickets cost $15 and five bucks from each ticket sold will be donated to the zoo’s conservation fund, which supports animal research and welfare.

    The pop-up bar will run over two weekends and six nights, from Thursday, October 29–Saturday, October 31 and Thursday, November 5–Saturday, November 7 — with two sittings per night at 5pm and 7pm. With only 13 seats available in the Crocodile Den each night, these tickets are going to be snapped up quick, so move fast if you want to head along.

    READ MORE BUY TICKETS
  • 5

    Dust off your fake blood, vampire fangs and glitter, and get your spookiest costume ready as Melbourne party collective Poof Doof returns with its annual Halloween extravaganza. Taking place at Ivy, this year’s Halloqween Bloody Banquet will be going down a little different from other years due to social-distancing guidelines, but just because this year will be a seated affair doesn’t mean it’s going to be any less bright, bloody and fun-filled.

    Enjoy dinner and a show with a side of performances from devilish drag stars, singers, performers, and DJs including Kitty Glitter, Charlie Villas and Danni Issues. Food for the night will be provided by Totti’s with the menu including the Trick or Truffle mushroom lasagne, Hellfire smoked and roasted chicken, and Phantasmic pear and rocket salad. Each guest will also receive a Grim Reaper’s Goody Bag and creepy Absolut cocktail on arrival.

    If you were worried you were going to be stuck at home for Halloween this year, showing off your new skeleton leotard to your roommates, the Halloqween Bloody Banquet will allow you to flaunt it for the world to see. You’ll be the star of the show with a costume extravaganza and red carpet arrival. It’s the perfect opportunity to put all the arts and crafts skills you learnt in lockdown to good use.

    Tables of four, six or eight are available, with first release tickets sold out and second and final release tickets close behind. Tables are available from $169 per person which includes a two-course meal, drinks package, and all the fun and excitement of the night.

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  • 4
    Day of the Dead and Halloween Fiesta

    Yes, 2020 has felt like the longest year ever. But October and November are almost here, which means that it’s almost Halloween and Dias de los Muertos time. So, at El Camino Cantina’s Sydney locations, it’s marking the occasion with a Day of the Dead and Halloween Fiesta. From Tuesday, October 20–Saturday, November 7, El Camino’s The Rocks, Manly, Miranda and Entertainment Quarter eateries will be getting in the celebratory mood in a number of ways. The tastiest: a two-hour food and drink package, which’ll see you eat your way through tortilla chips and salsa, buffalo wings with blue cheese mayo and guacamole, chargrilled chicken fajitas, and churros with chocolate and caramel sauce.

    Costing $89 per person, it also includes margaritas both frozen and on the rocks, plus house beer and wine, and soft drinks. And, you’ll get a gift bag, too. If you’re more interested in inventive margarita flavours, a heap of new varieties will be on offer — in 15-ounce glasses for $20 and in 24-ounce glasses for $24. Sip your way through Devil Chilli (watermelon, chilli and chilli salt), Walking Dead (passionfruit), Ghost Drop (blueberry) and Poison Apple (sour apple) types at all stores, or grab a tasting paddle of four for $30. At The Rocks, there’ll also be six other kinds on offer: Skittle Bomb, Mad Scientist (grape), Sour Strap (strawberry), Snake Bite (raspberry), Whizz Fizz (orange) and Potion of Love (lychee).

    On Saturdays at The Rocks, DJs will also spin tunes — including on Saturday, October 31, when you’re encouraged to dress up, obviously.

    Images: Michael Gribbin.

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  • 3
    An Inner West Halloween

    If you’re craving live music and have always wanted to see your favourite Sydney bands perform in Halloween costumes, you’re in luck. Marrickville’s Factory Theatre and booking agent Collective Artists are hosting An Inner West Halloween, a night of live music and fancy dress featuring some of Sydney’s best upcoming musicians.

    On Saturday October 31, rising indie-rock star Annie Hamilton, punk rockers The Buoys, country singer Andy Golledge, and bedroom-pop singer-songwriter Solo Career will take the Factory stage. This isn’t Golledge’s first rodeo, either — he performed at last Halloween’s Young Henrys Rock & Roll Circus.

    Fellow Sydney musicians Body Type will be handling DJ duties on the night, so be prepared for a seated boogie. The five-act lineup will provide music throughout the evening, a change of pace from the tight set times many venues have had to adhere to as bands try to squeeze in two shows per night to accommodate for restricted capacity venues.

    Attendees will receive a complimentary drink on entry and costumes are encouraged, with awards courtesy of Young Henrys being presented to the best-dressed patrons throughout the night.

    READ MORE BUY TICKETS
  • 2
    Frightful 80s Drive-In Cinema

    The spookiest time of the year is here, which means different things to different people. Perhaps you think you’re never too old to don a costume and go trick-or-treating. Maybe you just like the excuse to eat plenty of lollies. Or, you could enjoy diving headfirst into as much horror viewing as you can manage.

    For folks in the latter category — and those who like dressing up, too — the Georges River Council is hosting the type of event you’ll want to add to your calendar. Across the evenings of Friday, October 30 and Saturday, October 31, it’s celebrating Halloween by setting up its own Frightful 80s Drive-In Cinema, which’ll be free to attend at Donnelly Park in Connells Point.

    Even better — rather than just screening horror flicks, which pretty much every cinema around town will be doing, this pop-up drive-in is showing the entire first season of Stranger Things. Prepare to revisit the Upside Down and learn all about demogorgons. If  you want to bring some waffles with you to eat, well, Eleven would clearly approve.

    Entry opens at 5pm each night, with screenings running from 7–10pm. There are no bookings or tickets, so arriving early to nab a spot is recommended.

    Also, if you deck out your car in a costume — yes, you read that correctly — and you can win a prize for the best-dressed vehicle. Clearly, given what’s showing, someone is going to cover their ride with Christmas lights.

    Image: Elder.

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  • 1

    Go on an out-of-this-world adventure with the new interactive theatre experience Hotel Bella Luna. Marrickville’s Flight Path Theatre is hosting the world premiere of this immersive sci-fi comedy from Thursday, October 22 through Saturday, November 7. During the performance, audience members are encouraged to participate and assist staff of an intergalactic hotel as they try to uncover a mystery and save the hotel.

    As you move through three rooms of the Hotel Bella Luna, you can influence the performers by puzzle-solving and voting, creating a unique performance each night. While participation is encouraged, those looking for a more passive theatre-going experience can enjoy the production without directly getting involved.

    The performance has been designed around a COVID-safe plan in order to adhere to social-distancing guidelines and create a safe and comfortable environment for the attendees.

    Tickets are $23 for concession and $28 for general audience, with five percent of all total profits being donated directly to Pay The Rent, an organisation that financially supports First Nations people and communities.

    READ MORE BUY TICKETS
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