Whispers of otherworldly secrets and restless spirits beckon, as Eerie Pennsylvania readies for its spookiest season. A chilling greeting awaits you and your ghoul friends along the shores of Lake Erie with haunted cemeteries, creepy tunnels, and spine-tingling films. From things that go bump in the night to unexplainable ghostly noises, the city with the eerily appropriate name is ready to scare you senselessly with Halloween happenings. (Pictured above: "Children of the Corn" actor John Franklin)
The undead are calling. Held inside the historic Warner Theater, the Eerie Horror Fest is a curated program of new, upcoming, and classic short and feature-length films, workshops, panel discussions, video game demonstrations, concert performances, and celebrity guests participating in live Q&As, autographs, and photo opportunities. This year’s Eerie Horror Fest features an opening night party (Oct. 4) with celebrity DJ Tina Romero (daughter of George Romero), and a main event screening of George Romero’s “Night of the Living Dead” with live original score performance by prog-rock band Morricone Youth. On Saturday night (Oct. 7), Italian pro-rock band Claudio Simonetti’s Goblin performs. Claudio Simonetti is a famous film composer who has written many well-known horror film scores including Suspiria, Demons, and Dawn of the Dead. The Fest also includes a family-friendly component Saturday morning that will feature a screening of “Hocus Pocus” and trick or treating in the lobby. The Eerie Horror Fest runs Wednesday, Oct. 4 from 5 – 10 p.m., Thursday, Oct. 5 from 4 – 11 p.m., and Friday and Saturday, Oct. 6 and 7 from 10 a.m. - 2 p.m. Click here for ticket information and additional details.
Described as a cross between Investigation-Discovery (ID) TV and Buffalo Bill from Silence of the Lambs, Covert Escape Game’s newest room is its scariest room! The game is centered around a missing person’s case, and it just so happens that the person is someone you know. Through a series of clues and police reports, you and your search party will try to solve the mystery of what happened to this friend while uncovering some gruesome pieces along the way. With a little luck and keen clue-solving skills, your group can save your friend in time. Due to graphic images and limited lighting, parents should use discretion for children under 12. This game does not have any live actors, and the escape doors are not locked. The Missing Person game is available daily at various times. Click here for ticket information and additional details.
Fridays, October 6-27
Every Halloween, the majestic Victorian Princess transforms into a haunted ghost ship complete with decked-out decks and a devilishly devious crew, ready to carry its cache of creepy creatures onto the waters of Presque Isle Bay. This cruise is frightfully delightful featuring costume contests and prizes, a cash bar, and a DJ. Each cruise features a different themed night including witches, serial killers, zombies, and vampires. All cruises run from 8 p.m. to 11 p.m. Your ticket includes the cruise and light snacks.
Saturday and Sundays, October 7-29
Dedicated in 1851, the Erie Cemetery is one of the region’s first cemeteries and is the final resting place of many famous residents. Take a walk, if you dare, through the gates of the Erie Cemetery and see what may lurk in the shadows during the “Ghost and Legends” tour. Learn ghostly stories of some of these residents along with a few urban legends. Each 90-minute tour starts at 1 p.m. inside the main gates, rain or shine. Walk-ins are welcome, or you can register and purchase tickets in advance here.
Wednesdays and Fridays, October 11 - November 1
See what lies beneath The Brewerie at Union Station and get a rare glimpse at the dark and mysterious tunnels that run underneath. A guide will walk you deep into the bowels of the building and tell the tragic story of Clara, a little girl who supposedly fell backward down a marble flight of stairs to her unfortunate death. To this day, there are rumors of people hearing a child’s giggle or a scream or experiencing a tripping sensation on their shins. Tours last approximately 90 minutes and take place Wednesdays at 7:30 p.m. and Fridays at 7 p.m. and 9:30 p.m. Space is extremely limited and tours sell out quickly. Reservations can be made online or by calling 814-454-2200.
For nearly 200 years, the tiny borough of Girard, Pennsylvania has remained relatively unchanged in size and appearance, its Main Street still lined with many of the original structures built by early settlers in the 1800s. But beneath Girard’s quiet, quaint exterior lies a hotbed of paranormal activity, with the spirits of long-dead citizens still making appearances today. Learn the stories behind Girard’s hauntings, the spirits who inhabit the town, and more. All walks begin at 8 p.m. and last approximately 90 minutes. Walk participants are to meet at the corner of Main and Mechanic Streets, near the Civil War monument. Ticket information and reservations are available by calling or texting 814-490-5078.
Available year-round (West Ridge Road location)
The Axe Murder Hollow legend is based on a story that has haunted the Erie area for almost 60 years. Although the alleged ax murder incident in the hollow off Sterrettania Road has never been proven and there is no historical evidence, generations of curious thrill seekers have visited the area in hopes of seeing the ghostly farmer who is said to have brutally murdered his wife and her lover. Immerse yourself in this frightfully interactive game as you try to find the gas can to start your car and escape before the farmer-turned-axe murderer finds you. The Axe Murder Hollow Game is available on Tuesdays and Thursdays at 6:55 p.m. Fridays at 12:45, 7:20, and 9:10 p.m., Saturdays at 2:15, 4:50, 6:20, and 9 p.m. and Sundays at 4 p.m. Ticket information and additional details are here. .