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Still Looking for Something to do for Halloween and Día de los Muertos?

If you are on the hunt for something to do this weekend, there’s no shortage of events to make this spooky season memorable.

Live performances from dance and music groups are a part of the annual Mexican Day of the Dead festival at the Bowers Museum. Photo courtesy of Bowers Museum

As we reach the end of October, there’s no better time to figure out holiday plans for Halloween and Día de los Muertos (translated from Spanish to “Day of the Dead”).

But there’s no need to scour the internet because Culture OC has taken care of that for our readers. Whether you’re in the mood for treats, pumpkins or holiday activities, we’ve rounded up a little bit of something for everyone, no matter where you are in Orange County.

PHOTO 1: Pick a pumpkin from an actual pumpkin patch at Tanaka Farms in Irvine. When visitors aren’t picking pumpkins, they can enjoy various activities such as wagon rides, festival games, and arts and crafts, to name a few. Photo courtesy of Tanaka Farms. PHOTO 2: Irvine Park Railroad in Orange offers train rides at one ticket per person, with 12 months or younger free of charge. Photo courtesy of Irvine Park Railroad

Pumpkin Patches

No Halloween season is complete without carving a pumpkin or two, so why not take a trip to the pumpkin patch? Though visitors won’t find the Great Pumpkin King, they will find ripe pumpkins ready to be carved (or painted) for some Halloween arts and crafts.

ANAHEIM and LAGUNA HILLS: Pumpkin City’s Pumpkin Farm

When: 11 a.m. to 8:30 p.m. Monday through Thursday, 10 a.m. to 10 p.m. Friday through Sunday

Where: Anaheim Town Square, 2180 E. Lincoln Ave., Anaheim

Second Location: Laguna Hills Mall, 24203 Avenida de la Carlota, Laguna Hills

Cost: Free admission Monday through Friday before 4 p.m., free admission all day Halloween, $8 for ages 2-12 and $10 for ages 13 and up

More Info:

BREA: Enchanted Country Pumpkin Patch

COSTA MESA: Tanaka Farms — The Hana Field Pumpkin Patch & Flower Fields

IRVINE: Tanaka Farms Pumpkin Patch

ORANGE: Pumpkin Patch at the Irvine Park Railroad

PLACENTIA: The Pumpkin Patch

SAN CLEMENTE: ABC Tree Farms Christmas Tree Farm & Pumpkin Patch

WESTMINSTER: The Pumpkin Factory at Westminster Mall

The Power of One Foundation hosts its fourth annual free Trunk or Treat in Costa Mesa where kids collect candy from decorated trunks and enjoy booths with games and activities. PHOTO 1: A decorated trunk. PHOTO 2: Children will show off their costumes during the costume parade following the costume contest at 6 p.m. Photos courtesy of Power of One Foundation

Trunk or Treat/Trick or Treat

Every year communities throughout Orange County set up trick-or-treat (sometimes referred to as trunk or treat) events for parents to bring their little ones. Some trick-or-treat events have costume contests, activities and photo ops as well. Although admission is free, these events are usually held only while supplies last.

While some trick-or-treat events are scheduled for Halloween night, several are scheduled throughout the month or days before Halloween. With Halloween on a Tuesday night this year, these trick-or-treat events are perfect for the kids to have some extra fun before Halloween, while also being able to wear their costumes for more than one night.

BREA: Brea Mall Trick or Treat

When: 4-7 p.m. Oct. 31

Where: Brea Mall, 1065 Brea Mall, Brea

Cost: Free — Check the link for participating stores

More Info:

BUENA PARK: Cops ‘N’ Goblins

COSTA MESA: 4th Annual Trunk or Treat

DANA POINT: Halloween Spooktacular & Trunk or Treat

LAGUNA BEACH: Preschool Trick or Treat

MISSION VIEJO: Halloween Trick-or-Treating Fun!

TUSTIN: Emerald CT’s Halloween Howl

WESTMINSTER: Halloween Spooktacular/Día de los Muertos

Every year the Bowers Museum in Santa Ana hosts a Mexican Day of the Dead free family festival in the Key Courtyard with art projects, face painting and treats. Aside from the activities, the event features live performances from several dance and music groups throughout the day celebrating Mexican culture. Photos courtesy of Bowers Museum

Día de los Muertos/Day of the Dead

When Halloween ends, Día de los Muertos follows right after, from Nov. 1 to Nov. 2. Día de los Muertos is a holiday originating in Latin America and celebrates life and death. On Nov. 1, the day is known as All Saints Day, Day of the Children or El Día de los Inocentes, with the day being dedicated to deceased children, while Nov. 2 honors deceased adults, sometimes called All Souls Day.

It’s believed that every year on Día de los Muertos, relatives who have passed on are able to cross back into the physical realm where living relatives come together and commemorate the lives of the deceased.

The living create ofrendas (altars), where they honor their deceased loved ones. Ofrendas are typically decorated with the personal belongings of the deceased, as well as their pictures, candles and flowers. Many ofrendas also have offerings such as the departed’s favorite foods and drinks, and calaveras de azucar (sugar skulls).

Some spend Día de los Muertos at home, in the cemetery or out in the streets at community events.

BUENA PARK: 2nd Annual Buena Park Elks Marketplace & Día de Muertos Exhibit

When: Noon to 5 p.m. Oct. 29

Where: Buena Park Elks Lodge, 7212 Melrose St., Buena Park

Cost: Free

More Info:

COSTA MESA: Día de los Muertos Celebration at Hana Field

COSTA MESA: El Día de los Muertos Performance by Indigenous Mexicano Musician Martin Espino

CYPRESS: Día de los Muertos 2023

FULLERTON: Día de los Muertos Festival

IRVINE: Día de los Muertos 2023

LAGUNA BEACH: Day of the Dead / Día de los Muertos Celebration

LOS ALAMITOS: Día de los Muertos

MISSION VIEJO: Día de los Muertos Festival

SANTA ANA: 9th Annual Viva La Vida Día de los Muertos Festival

SANTA ANA: Mexican Day of the Dead

Check for Events at the Local Library

Throughout the year libraries host special events and activities such as Spooky Month for the entire month of October at Orange County public libraries. While we are reaching the end of the month, there is no shortage of events and more can be found at the Spooky Month link.

BREA: Halloween Spooktacular

When: 4 p.m. Oct. 31

Where: Brea Library, 1 Civic Center Circle, Brea

COSTA MESA: Costume Candy Walk

CYPRESS: Spooky Storytime

FOOTHILL RANCH: Halloween Storytime

LAGUNA NIGUEL: Halloween Storytime

LA HABRA: Día de los Muertos Celebration

RANCHO SANTA MARGARITA: Movie Showing “Hocus Pocus”

SAN JUAN CAPISTRANO: Spooktacular Storytime & Parade

STANTON: Slime Science Lab

More Halloween Events (festivals, haunts and events)

ANAHEIM: The Anaheim Fall Festival & Halloween Parade

When: 11 a.m. to 6 p.m., parade starts at 7 p.m. Oct. 28

Where: Center Street Promenade, Anaheim

Cost: Free

More Info:

GARDEN GROVE: Dark Harvest Haunted Attraction

LA PALMA: Halloween Carnival 2023

NEWPORT BEACH: Boo at the Bay: Family Halloween Party



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