San Diego Weekend Guide: Oct. 29-31 – Halloween Edition

Costume challenge: Make something this elaborate by the weekend. No, really, just have fun this Halloween – low-effort dressing up works too. Photo by Chris Stone

Boo! Now, now, don’t let that frighten you. There’s so much worse out there. Ghosts and goblins, of course, will hold sway this San Diego weekend. So will spirits and squid. Squid?

Yep, the runaway Netflix hit already is inspiring theme nights, and just in time for All Hallows Eve.

If the scares go down easier with a pint (or shot) or two, try:

  • The Great Pumpkin Beer Festival, at 7th Street and Island Avenue, featuring 40 pumpkin-themed suds, live music, a costume contest and hidden surprises in the Gaslamp. The fest kicks off at 3:25 p.m. Saturday by tapping a 1,000-pound giant pumpkin keg. ‘Tis the season for pumpkin lattes, so why not brews too? Remaining admission tiers start at $45.
  • The Haunted Beer Mansion at Sideyard in Barrio Logan at 8 p.m. Saturday. Presented by Rock Star Beer Festivals, the house features 20 beers from Stone Brewing and Thorn Brewing, and the “dead dance party” with music by (naturally) the Ragin’ Vampire Band and DJ Pennywise. Admission, with unlimited samples, costs $40.
  • Bridgerton – so last year. Taking the place of sexy refinement? The brutal gamesmanship of Squid Game, a top streamer since its September debut. Play a (presumably) milder version of the game at Understory, a bar at the Del Mar Highland Town Center’s Sky Deck, on Saturday. Enjoy $4.56 shots and a DJ, while donning your track-suit best for the costume contest.
Pumpkin beer? Yeah, it’s a thing. Photo by Rupert Affen via Flickr

Halloween of course, is not just for tipplin’ adults. One option for families – the Pumpkin Bash at Alpine’s Lions Tigers & Bears sanctuary. Attendees can come at 10 a.m. Saturday dressed in costume to watch rescued wild cats and bears devour pumpkin treats while enjoying a guided tour. Admission is extremely limited, at $60 for adults and $35 for children.

Finally, community celebrations include: