‘Tis the season to get battered in fancy dress.
Halloween is finally upon us and there’s so much going on in the city this year. From immersive club nights to family-friendly fun days, there’s no excuse not to get dressed up and get involved!
1. See the monsters (until October 28)
Photo: City Co Manchester Open CityEight inflatable monsters have wrapped their tentacles around Manchester’s rooftops, as city-wide spookfest Halloween in the City has returned. The giant green tentacles, created by artist Filthy Luker, can be seen snaking across the rooftops of House of Fraser, Manchester Arndale, Manchester Hall, Mayfield, Piccadilly Place and 35 Dale Street
2. Visit the forest (October 27 and October 28, 10am to 7pm)
An enchanted forest of 30 birch trees will also fill St Ann’s Square this weekend, where families can meet magical creatures and characters including the witch from Julia Donaldson’s children’s book Room on the Broom. And buildings around the city including Manchester Town Hall, Manchester Hall and Afflecks will be lit up a gruesome green as part of the two-day festival. St Ann’s Square
3. Dress up world record (October 27)
Grab a bed sheet and break the world record for the most ghosts in one place ever! The aim is to beat the current record of 650 by bringing hundreds of bedsheet wearing Mancunians to Exchange Square for 5 minutes and the spookiest group photo op Manchester has ever seen! And it’s all to raise funds for Big Change and help homelessness in Manchester. Register to take part for free here.
1pm on New Cathedral Street outside Harvey Nichols.
4. Celebrate the cute side of Halloween at a dog fancy dress ‘pawty’ (October 28)
If you love dogs in dinosaur costumes (or any costumes) as much as we do, you need to get yourself down to The Mog and Dog Squad’s Halloween party on October 28 from 10am – 2pm. The cafe owners have promised a spooktacular ‘pawty’ where they’ll be serving pumpkin spiced lattes for owners and Halloween pupcakes for their four-legged friends. Dogs will be able to take part in a fancy dress competition, apple bobbing and trick for treat – with medals, treats and prizes up for grabs. There will also be props and a Halloween backdrop to capture those Instagram-worthy photos!
7-9 Ashton Road, Denton Manchester, United Kingdom
5. Celebrate all things bad taste from the 80’s at Deaf Institute (October 27)
This Halloween, the ghouls at Deaf Institute will host a blood-splattered Slasher party that organisers guarantee will have you screaming for the exits. On Saturday a special Halloween edition of Girls on Film will see the club transformed into a slaughterhouse of all things bad taste from the 1980s. Get tickets here.
135 Grosvenor St, Manchester M1 7HE
6. Get weird at Impossible’s immersive Halloween-themed club night (October 27)
The Theatre Of Impossible at Impossible Manchester is bringing a Halloween-themed immersive club night to the basement of its Peter Street bar. Featuring live theatrical shows, choreographed dancers and an exciting team of characters hidden in the crowd, ready to bring clubbers into the show. Venture into the world of the weird and the wonderful on Saturday as Casa Loca brings you a Halloween party like no other, full of fun treats and naughty tricks. Tickets are available from Fever and can be purchased here. 36 Peter St, Manchester M2 5QR
7-9. Scare yourself silly at Victoria Baths (October 25 – 27)
The glorious grade II listed swimming pool and Turkish Baths complex has partnered up with The Village Screen to present three nights of spooktacular film screening, kicking off with Steven Spielberg’s masterpiece Jaws tonight. Followed by the 80s vampire thriller, The Lost Boys tomorrow and the family-friendly classic, The Witches on Saturday. Get tickets here. Hathersage Rd, Manchester M13 0FE
10. Treat yourself to a fancy dress late night brunch (October 27)
Scary films, fancy dress, getting sweets in for the ‘kids’ that haven’t come trick or treating at your flat in the five years you’ve lived there, it’s no wonder we love Halloween as much as we do. This year, if you fancy something a bit more civilised, you can celebrate Halloween in gruesomely glam style with a three-course late night brunch, complete with Prosecco, and DJ party at Manchester Hall. Expect a delicious meal followed by a rotation of Manchester’s finest DJs playing club classics along with a special guest appearance by house artist Abigail Bailey. 36 Bridge St, M3 3BT
11. See Ghostbusters on the big screen (October 26)
Escape the trick-or-treaters this year with a spooktacular cinema experience at Manchester’s Spinningfields. The Range will host a special screening of the first Ghostbusters (the original, of course) on Friday (October 26), with lashings of Crystal Head vodka. The golf clubhouse will offer film lovers a one-of-a-kind experience that will see their golf simulator pods transformed into private cinemas, complete with 160-inch screens. Get tickets here.
12. Test Your Nerve With Lucardo’s Live Actor Halloween Escape Room (October 26 – November 4)
Photo: Lucardo”The Killer has struck again. A gruesome murder has taken place in Virginia House but something feels strange. This feels like a rushed job and the killer has left evidence at the crime scene. We think this is down to the victim personally knowing the killer. Intel tells us that they became suspicious of their victim and killed them before they revealed their identity to the police. We are so close to cracking this case and we know that we can take advantage but you will have to be quick. The killer will want to return to the crime scene to ensure their identity stays concealed so they can be free to take more innocent lives! Just ensure they don’t take yours…” Book here. Virginia House, 5-7 Great Ancoats St, M4 5AD.
13. Visit Afflecks Palace (October 26 – October 31)
There are lots of spooky goings on at Afflecks this Halloween, as the whole emporium has been transformed into a Spooky Shopping Destination. There’ll be a monster in the window, a celebrity Halloween Lock Down (October 31), live tarot reading (October 26), vintage Halloween party (October 27) and some of the best fancy dress in the city. More information here.
14. Test your nerve at Spooky Treetop adventure Golf (until October 26)
To mark their first half term in the city, Treetop Adventure Golf will be celebrating Halloween by decorating the entire venue with spooky props for some petrifying putting, making visitors feel like they are really spending Halloween in the haunted jungle. From October 22, enjoy time off with the kids in the unearthly Amazonian rainforest with free face painting every afternoon from Monday – Friday, free Halloween themed arts and crafts, plus mystery goody bags containing tricks or treats for all visitors. Throughout half term week, Treetop Adventure Golf will open an hour earlier, from 10am each morning.
15. Visit The Printworks for a monstrously marvellous party (October 26)
The Printworks is hosting a huge half-term family party – and it’s completely free. Bring the children along from 12pm – 4pm, for a monstrously marvellous party in The Printworks Pump Yard, with a DJ playing all the best petrifying pop songs to boogie along to. Thriller, anyone? The spine-chilling fun includes crafty workshops where kids can make witches hats and spooky stained-glass, plus there’ll be face painting and balloon modelling which is guaranteed to delight the little ones. Grab your best Halloween costume, and come on down for a ghoulishly great time!
16. Binge watch the Sabrina reboot on Netflix (from October 26)
The Sabrina The Teenage Witch reboot is finally here and it’s veeeerry different from the original. Based on the Archie comic, Chilling Adventures Of Sabrina, the reboot has the same basic premise (blonde, teenage witch) as the beloved 90’s series, but that seems to be where the similarities end. Described by Netflix as a dark coming-of-age story that traffics in horror, the occult and witchcraft, the series is more in the vein of Rosemary’s Baby and The Exorcist than its light-hearted predecessor.
17. Stock up on half price pick and mix (until October 31)
The deal every Wilko shopper has been waiting for is back! The bargain retailer has slashed the price of its pick and mix by half, just in time for Halloween. The offer started on Wednesday and will run until October 31, meaning there’s plenty of time to stock up for the weekend.