From zombie parades and costume contests to haunted houses and hayrides (to haunted anything!), the Halloween season casts its spell and awakens our inner ghouls and goblins. As part of FrightQuest -- a MapQuest series on spooky destinations and activities -- here are three options to celebrate Halloween in Utah that are sure to be a scream.
— Shellie Braeuner
The Haunted Canyon Ghost Train
Riding a train through lonely canyons is haunting enough, but the Heber Valley Railroad in Utah takes the experience one step further with the Haunted Canyon Ghost Train. This family-appropriate ride takes passengers on a 35-minute trip in the dark. The conductor tells spooky stories as the train winds through the canyon. Riders are welcome to come in costume but should dress for the outdoors, as the station and train can be cold in October. Scenery and stories keep older children entranced without scaring little ones. Because the train is historic, it is not stroller accessible. Tickets start at $6 for kids and $14 for adults.
450 S. 600 W., Heber City, UT 84032 | Get Directions
Nightmare On 13th
Utah's Nightmare on 13th comprises 45 rooms, each one with its own individual images of terror. Thrill seekers can escape from zombies in the Night of the Dead attraction, encounter creatures from the lowest pits of hell in the Realm of Darkness and dodge destruction in the Nightmare Theater. USA Today says it is one of the scariest haunted houses in the U.S. More than 100 live actors start scaring visitors from the moment guests enter the parking lot. Rumor has it that every actor who scares the pee out of a patron gets a free dinner. True or not, this haunted house is designed for adults and teens. Nightmare on 13th runs throughout October. Admission costs $20.
300 W. 1300 S., Salt Lake City, UT 84115 | Get Directions
Cornbelly's Corn Maze And Pumpkin Fest
For more than 16 years, Cornbelly’s Corn Maze and Pumpkin Fest has been supplying Halloween entertainment in Utah. Little ones can enjoy a kid-size corn maze, picking out pumpkins in the Pumpkin Courtyard and the Jumping Pillow, a giant bouncy structure. During the day, older children and families can explore several small mazes. Meanwhile, the farm's larger corn maze was one of seven mazes in the country to work with NASA on Space Farm 7, a space-themed design. After dark, families can wander through the mazes by flashlight for a more challenging experience. Cornbelly’s also features a pumpkin tree, which lights up with intricately carved jack-o'-lanterns at night for a breathtaking Halloween view. An unlimited season pass to Cornbelly's costs $29.95 for anyone older than 2. Cornbelly's is open daily, except Sundays, during the last three weeks of October, and costumes are always welcome.
3003 N. Thanksgiving Way, Lehi, UT 84043 | Get Directions
Freddy Krueger and the puppet from the movie Saw are some of the crazies visitors may encounter at Nightmare on 13th in Salt Lake City.
Did we miss a Halloween event in Utah? Tell us about it in the comments section below.