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Have a Spooktacular and Safe Halloween in Santa Barbara


Two young children all decked out as wild animals for halloween for the Spooky Zoo Halloween spell-ebration at the Santa Barbara Zoo.

Image courtesy of the Santa Barbara Zoo

Every year when the harvest moon rises, Santa Barbara residents are treated to bewitching Spooktacular Halloween events. This year is no exception, even in the time of COVID-19. We’re talking spell-binding pumpkin patches, goulash virtual experiences, haunted tours and more. In fact, even this year, Halloween in Santa Barbara means a full calendar of Halloween events for “kids” of all ages.

Pumpkin Patches
Head to Lane Farms Pumpkin Patch for everything you need to get into the Halloween spirit. From now to October 31, everyone is invited to enjoy hayrides, farm animals, a corn maze, loads of pumpkins, and the perfect backdrop for that festive, Instagram-able fall photo. Big Wave Dave’s Pumpkin Patch is another great spot to pick that perfect pumpkin or festive gourd. This local patch offers a variety of kids activities, too; from spook-tacular photo opportunities, and boo-tiful autumn harvest decor for your Montecito home.

The full moon behind a spooky tree at Halloween.
Spooky Ghost Tour
For a real treat, take the whole family on Spooky Tours with Santa Barbara Ghost Tours. Join Professor Julie Ann Brown as she tours you through the streets of Downtown Santa Barbara, sharing the stories of our friendly resident ghosts. Kids at heart will enjoy the Downtown Paranormal Wine and Spirits Tour. There are more tours to choose from, including a Legends, Myths and Mayhem Tour, Dead of the Night Tour, and a VIP Historical Dinner Tour.

Boo at the Zoo
Spooky Zoo is a fun and festive Halloween spell-ebration at the Santa Barbara Zoo. Visit the animals amidst frightfully fun décor. There are plenty of photo ops all around the zoo, making it the perfect spot for a chilling selfie. Enjoy tasty treats for all with booo-zy adult beverages available to for those not driving. Due to COVID-19 restrictions, no costume head or face mask is permitted, and cloth or surgical face coverings must be worn while in the zoo. Reservations are required.

Mystifying Mysteries
The Santa Barbara Museum of Natural History presents Halloween Museum Mysteries. The entire family is invited to don their favorite costumes for this mysterious adventure. The Halloween Museum Mysteries include a clue kit to turn your visit into a fun and cryptic adventure by decoding hidden messages and participating in a scavenger hunt in the museum. Participants will be able to continue the fun with a take-home activity and come back the following week for another mystery. And for extra Halloween fun, the museum will be decked out with more bats and spiders than usual and will also have bottle rocket launches and spooky science experiments. The limited availability clue kit includes two secret messages, magnifying glasses, invisible ink pen, UV light, clues, evidence container, take-home activity, and reusable bag. Space is limited and reservations are required.

Virtual Events
If the spirit moves you to stay home this Halloween in Santa Barbara, celebrate the day of the dead with the Virtual Halloween Fun with The Painted Cabernet. Select from several different classes held over Zoom including the Painted Cabernet where you will be transformed into your favorite artist or paint your own Moonlight Witch or Halloween Cat.

At the Thrills and Chills Virtual Dance Fest, all ages are invited to patriciate in a virtual “Thriller” dance along with other popular Halloween choreography. You’ll have a chance to learn the moves and choreography thanks to the experts at World Dance Humanity. Everyone’s invited to perform the dances in a virtual Zoom Halloween party set for October 31.

Put on your spookiest, funniest, or most creative Halloween costume for the Virtual Haunted Halloween Costume Contest and Dance Party on October 30. Dance the night away with the hosts from KLITE 101.7’s morning radio including Gary Fruin and Catherine Remak and live music from DJ Scott Topper. Win spooky prizes at this fundraiser that supports CADA’s Mentor Program.

For Adults Only
MOXI’s Adult’s Only Science Tricks + Treats event package is the perfect way to spice up your Halloween in Santa Barbara date night or ignite the flame with the love of your life. Designed for two adults 21+, the package includes everything you need for a festive evening at home. Each kit comes with a ready-to-heat empanada meal from Buena Onda, Modern Times 4-pack of mixed beer, MOXI Activity Kit with Chilling Charcoal Ice Cream, Mini “pong” catapult game, and the materials to craft your own beeswax candles.

Little girl and boy carving pumpkin at Halloween. Dressed up children trick or treating. Kids trick or treat. Child in witch costume playing in autumn park. Toddler kid with jack-o-lantern.
Safe Trick or Treating
For a safe way to let the little ones trick or treat this Halloween in Santa Barbara, head to the Halloween Door Dash at Fairview Gardens, a 13-acre certified organic farm in the heart of Goleta. All year long, they produce a variety of high quality annual and perennial crops, trees, herbs and flowers. Extra precautions are being taken to keep everyone safe at this event, including required face coverings for everyone over the age 3, and a 6-foot social distancing mandate.

As you participate in any of the above festivities, please remember to maintain a safe social distance and avoid gatherings with people outside of your household. Since masks are still required, infuse a little Halloween fun by wearing themed prints to match the season. And this year, instead of traditional trick-or-treating, use this curated list full of alternative ways to celebrate without sacrificing on the fun or sweet treats.

For more events guaranteeing a safe Halloween in Santa Barbara, check out Visit Santa Barbara. Thinking about enjoying Halloween, 2021 in a new home? There’s both a “trick” and a “treat” involved. The trick is contacting me via email at, or calling me at (805) 886-9378, and the treat will selling your home and finding a new one. That’s what I call a “Hallo-win!

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