From spooky trails to family festivals, your County of San Diego Department of Parks and Recreation team has prepared a cauldron full of Halloween treats that are sure to please even the pickiest trick-or-treater.
San Elijo’s Not-So-Scary Estuary and San Dieguito’s Fall Festival combine again this year for one super-combo event at San Dieguito County Park on Oct. 16, from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. Not-So-Scary Eco Festival will include costume contests, crafts, games, interactive nature education and a chance to meet real birds of prey!
Our 18th annual Hellhole Canyon Spooky Trails event is also on Oct. 16, from 4 to 8:30 p.m. Visitors can take a short trek through scary scenery, participate in costume contests, play games and win prizes, meet live hawks and owls, and enjoy a family-friendly movie: “Sing 2” under a starry night sky. The first 100 kids to arrive will receive a free pumpkin!
East County residents will enjoy the Haunted Trail at Dos Picos County Park from 7 to 9 p.m. on Oct. 15, and those in South County will get a kick of their own darkly lit path at Potrero County Park from 6 to 8 p.m. on Oct. 22. Be advised: There’s more in store when you visit these parks (think happy not horror), so plan to make an evening of it.
Lurking in North County? There’s a haunted trail near you, too! Part of a much larger all-ages Halloween party at Live Oak County Park, guests will gain access to free candy, fun exhibits, live entertainment and a special, moonlit screening of “Coco”. It all takes place Oct. 15 from 4 to 8 p.m.
Get dressed in your otherworldly best; all three of community centers are hosting Halloween festivals! Hosts will have music, food, games, giveaways and more. Add these sweet destinations to your calendar for three nights of non-frightening family fun: Spring Valley’s event is taking place Oct. 21 from 5:30 to 7:30 p.m., Lakeside’s event is happening the same day but from 5 to 8 p.m., and the Fallbrook team will be hosting their non-ghoulish gathering on Oct. 28, from 3:30 to 5:30 p.m.
Here we grow again; this year’s Waterfront Pumpkin Patch is back Oct. 22 with free pumpkins for kids (while supplies last), inflatables, crafts, games, food trucks and other seasonal festivities! The pumpkin patch will be open 2 to 5 p.m. and will be followed by a Halloween-appropriate flick: “Ghostbusters: Afterlife”.
Last but certainly not least, our popular Dia de Los Muertos celebration will be held Oct. 29 at Rancho Guajome Adobe. Activities take place 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. with admission ranging from $0 to $4. Peruse decorated altars, try your hands at papel picado and other crafts, enjoy food, listen to music, cheer on Ballet Folklorico dancers, and be awed by the Catrin and Catrina parade! This colorful, cultural celebration is a fall favorite.
Learn more about these and other park activities and events in our seasonal program guide.