Halloween Happenings Haunt Arkansas
Halloween weekend in college has two necessary components: inventive costumes and parties. Despite the endless debauchery, there are indeed other things happening this weekend besides drunk lumberjacks and cats passing out on your friend’s kitchen floor. Corn mazes, haunted houses, a zombie dance party and a trippy jam band can all make this weekend memorable.
Nothing says autumn more than getting lost in a field, and corn mazes have popped up over northwest Arkansas. You can race your friends to the end, or even pretend that the maze is the final leg of the Tri-Wizard Tournament in “Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire.” Though corn mazes may sound a little campy, they do provide a fun, relatively cheap activity for a date or just a big group of friends hanging out.
NWA Corn Maze is located on Drake Street and Garland Avenue in Fayetteville. According to their website, nwacornmaze.com, admission is only $5 per person. NWA Corn Maze is open 4 to 8 p.m. Friday, 10 a.m. to 10 p.m. Saturday and 1 to 6 p.m. Sunday.
If you don’t mind a short drive, Ozark Corn Maze, located in Cave Springs on Highway 112, has three separate mazes, including a Razorback maze and a haunted maze. Prices are $12 for all three mazes or $8 for two, according to ozarkcornmaze.com. They even have a petting zoo. Hours for the Ozark Corn Maze are 4 to 11 p.m. Friday, 10 a.m. to 11 p.m. Saturday and 1 to 6 p.m. on Sunday.
If corn mazes sound too childish, northwest Arkansas hosts several more-terrifying Halloween attractions. Haunted houses, for those gluttons for fear, provide more screams per dollar.
The Asylum Haunted House in Lowell puts a strong disclaimer on their website: “Please, for the love of God, do not bring small children to the Asylum.” While that may be more for show, any haunted house with the theme of a disturbing mental hospital will be fairly fright-inducing. The Asylum is open Friday and Saturday from 7 p.m. to midnight, and tickets are $12 per person.
Tickets for Nightmares Haunted House in Bentonville are $13 per person and can be purchased online at hauntednightmares.com. Proceeds go to the Bentonville Lion’s Club. The website has plenty of pictures of people in clown masks, which means the haunted house itself should be scary enough.
If demented clowns and chainsaw murderers aren’t enough for you, there’s always the Crescent Hotel in Eureka Springs, famed for the otherworldly spirits roaming the grounds. Aside from the ghosts, Eureka Springs has a bevy of restaurants and bars to choose from, and the drive in the fall is definitely worthwhile. They recommend you reserve tickets in advance, and more information can be found at americasmosthauntedhotel.com.
Smoke and Barrel Tavern on Dickson Street is hosting Halloween events all weekend. Thursday night, bands get to put on costumes for “Bands as Bands.” Local band Swimming will take on the role of The Strokes, and Teenagers will be Weezer. Sunday night, Smoke and Barrel will host a Walking Dead watch party. After an hour of zombies on the TV screen, it’s time for “Dancing Dead.” The zombie dance party will also feature a costume contest. According to the bar’s Facebook page, DJ Robe Flax will be there to provide “the ghoulish sounds to make you shimmy and shake.” By the end of the night, one lucky person will be crowned King or Queen Zombie.
You don’t have to wait until Sunday night to get your dancing on. On Saturday night, George’s Majestic Lounge will host Georgia-based band Perpetual Groove. For the past several years, Perpetual Groove has made a stop in Fayetteville. While not a Halloween event outright, costumes are most likely permitted.
The band has released several new albums, but their debut album, “Sweet Oblivious Antidote,” is a Fayetteville crowd favorite. The crowd at George’s greets “Three Weeks” and “TSMM” with a roar. The band also does excellent covers like “All My Friends” by LCD Soundsystem and “Diamonds on the Soles of Her Shoes” by Paul Simon.
So, lose yourself in a corn maze, get scared out of your mind at a haunted house, get down in a zombie costume and enjoy some fantastic live music. Halloween weekend in Fayetteville never disappoints.