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Santa Cruz Halloween Celebrations


Santa Cruz Family Friendly Halloween Activities

Santa Cruz heralds in All Hallows Eve with rustic pumpkin patches, harvest-inspired arts and crafts, entertainment, contests, and activities. It all creates a wonderful atmosphere of fun, fun and more fun.

Going to a real pumpkin patch and selecting the perfect pumpkin create wonderful family memories and marks the beginning of the Fall festivities

Santa Cruz Pumpkin Patches

Half Moon Bay Pumpkin Patches



Harvest Faire & Steam Festival— Oct. 6 – 7, 2018

Roaring Camp, Felton, CA

Step into the incredible world of steam power at the Harvest Faire & Steam Festival presented by Kinetic Steam Works and Roaring Camp Railroads. Welcome Fall with heritage children’s activities like scarecrow making, pumpkin patch picking, candle making and gold panning. Behold steam-powered line shafts, player pianos, letter presses, printing presses and more!  For tickets and information, call 831-335-4484.

Thomas and Percy’s Halloween Party™

Roaring Camp, Felton, CA

October 13 – 14, 20 – 21, 27 – 28 —Dress up for Halloween with favorites Thomas™ and Percy™, for a 20 minute train ride, entertainment, and fun filled activities for the entire family.

Giant Pumpkin Contest—Oct. 8, 2018 7:00 a.m. to 11:00 a.m.

Half Moon Bay—The gathering of titanic pumpkins will take place at the Safeway World Championship Pumpkin Weigh-off!  Nearly 100 participants will enter their massive pumpkins in hopes of capturing the coveted title and a share of $30,000 in prize money.

Half Moon Bay Art & Pumpkin Festival—Oct 13 & 14, 2018

Main Street, Half Moon Bay, CA

45 miles north of Santa Cruz is the wildly popular Half Moon Bay Art & Pumpkin Festival.  Admission is free.

Spooky or Not Spooky?

Saturday, October 27 at 1:00 pm
AND Saturday, October 28 at 11:30 am

A Big Basin special walk for Halloween! The walk in the forest focuses on the weird and wonderful.

Be Natural Youth Halloween Rock Concert—Saturday, Oct 13, from 1PM – 4:30PM

Flynn’s Cabaret & Steakhouse in Felton (formally Don Quixote’s) from 1:00 – 4:30PM

This is their biggest concert fundraiser in the Fall! BIG RAFFLE PRIZES! Great food, drinks 7 friends!! All TEN youth rock bands are performing!

Heritage Harvest Festival—Oct 21, 2016  at 11 a.m. to 4 p.m.

Wilder Ranch State Park, Santa Cruz   (831) 426-0505

Enjoy live music, wagon rides, draft horse demonstrations,  harvest and decorate pumpkins.

The Missing Arm of William Waddell—Oct. 20, 2018 at 6:30 PM

Big Basin Redwoods State Park       (831) 338-8860

A 1/2 mile guided walk through a forest decorated in the spirit of Halloween. Walks leave every 20 minutes, from 7 pm. FREE

Floating Pumpkin Patch– Sunday, October 14, 1 – 4 PM

979 17th Avenue, Santa Cruz, CA 95062    (831) 454-7901

In addition to pumpkins, they’ve got plenty of other fun activities planned for the day, including games, prizes, music, popcorn, and pumpkin decorating, and the waterslide will be open!

Scotts Valley Haunted House—Oct. 25-27, 2018 form 6:30 PM to 10:00 PM

Scotts Valley High School
555 Glenwood Drive, Scotts Valley, CA     (831) 439-9555

It’s scary so no kids under 10 years old

Haunted Halloween Concert-Oct 27, 2017

6500 Soquel Drive, Aptos, CA 95003    (831) 479-6100

Celebrate Halloween with the spooky tunes from the Cabrillo College Piano Department.

Fish, Fins, and Flukes Fall Festival— Sunday, October 14, 2018 10 AM – 5 PM

Seymour Center, Long Marine Lab, Santa Cruz (831) 459-3800

Guests will explore our marine lab’s Science Showcase featuring unique science artifacts, our skull collection, and a whale of a skeleton (or two!). Family crafts, El Buen Taco food truck, and live music from The Singing Scientist complete the day..

Spooky or Not Spooky? — Saturday, October 27 at 1:00 PM

A Big Basin special walk for Halloween! The walk in the forest focuses on the weird and wonderful.

Halloween Parade—Oct. 28, 2018

Capitola Village, Capitola (831) 475-6522

The parade begins at 2:00 PM

Line-up at 1:30 PM in the Pacific Cove Parking Lot above Capitola Police Department and City Hall. The parade winds through Capitola Village and ends at Esplanade Park.

Enjoy refreshments, entertainment, goody bags, balloons, and trick-or-treating at Village merchants. This free, family-friendly event is hosted by the Capitola-Soquel Chamber of Commerce.

Halloween on the Wharf —October 19 – 31, 2018

21 Municipal Wharf, Santa Cruz, California 95060

Join us for 13 days of frightful fun on the Santa Cruz Wharf October 19 – 31! Take part in the Great Pumpkin BINGO Hunt, snap a photo at our scenic photo booth, dance to Thriller at Zombie Night and enjoy festive Wharf specials ALL 13 days! It all kicks off October 19!





What’s on Tap


Santa Cruz Festivals & Events:

Thunderbirds on the Santa Cruz Wharf! Sept. 29, 2018 at 9am to 3pm.

Featuring the classic 1955-1957, the 1958-1965 vintage and the retro, 2002-2005 Thunderbirds.

Open Studios Art Tour – First 3 weeks in Oct. 2018

Welcome Back Monarchs Day – Oct. 14, 2018 11am – 4pm.

Annual Monte Foundation Fireworks Extravaganza! – Oct. 7, 2018

Santa Cruz Pumpkin Patches—Oct. 2018

MORE Santa Cruz Halloween Celebrations—Oct. 2018

Half Moon Bay Art & Pumpkin Festival—Oct. 13 & 14, 2018

Main Street, Half Moon Bay, CA



For more event information, click on our Festivals & Events page for Santa Cruz.



Top Santa Cruz Attractions:


Santa Cruz Beach Boardwalk

Fun for all ages.

Santa Cruz Campgrounds

Ocean views or Redwoods? Over 27 campgrounds and RV Parks

Santa Cruz Fishing 

Fall is fishing and crabbing season in Santa Cruz!

Santa Cruz Surfing

With 11 world-class surf breaks such as Steamer Lane and Pleasure Point, it is easy to understand why the greatest surfers in the world call Santa Cruz home!

Whale Watching – Whale Watching December through May


For more information on local attractions, click on the Attractions or Recreational Activities.




The Region’s Fall Advisories:

Traffic Conditions. Rush hour traffic can be extremely challenging – especially along Mission Street and Highway 1 between Santa Cruz and Capitols. It’s a good idea to plan ahead and arrive early and leave late. Go to to learn about road conditions.

Yes, it’s still water, water, water! California is undergoing an extreme drought. If you are planning a lake vacation be sure to check about water levels. That rafting trip, fishing, or skiing can be impacted.

EXTREME fire danger. The drought has created a very dangerous combination of dry vegetation and no moisture in the air to help contain any fire. Please use extreme caution during your trip.