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Claims of paranormal activity are stories that stick; pair a spooky history with brutal architecture, and you have a winning setting for ghost tours.
Beyond the usual prison tours is true Thanatourism, or tourism of places associated with great grief or violence. Asylums are a popular option, owing to their histories as buildings originally erected to serve only one purpose, to house and treat patients with mental illness. Despite their dark reputations, asylums provided food, shelter, and at least some hygiene. Unfortunately, because mental illness was considered un-curable, most of the patients were forced to live out their life in asylums such as these, while others could have been the victims of barbaric experimental treatments and surgeries.
Accessing the hushed, forbidding structures of these strict institutions is a modern fascination, one which flares up in autumn around the coming of Halloween.
Here are 4 of the most haunted institutions open to the public:
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If Zombiegeddon were upon us, would you rather be among the hordes of zombies, the living insane, or those running for their lives? The Redrun II – A Zombie Sequel lets you decide exactly where you think you'd belong.
The second annual horror run will take place in Virginia City, Nevada, thought to be one of the most haunted cities in America.
During the event, zombies will chase runners through Virginia City's train tunnels, haunted buildings, the Comstock Gold Mill, train graveyard and more. The total course covers six miles including six dead zones and six obstacles where runners will have to work together to survive.
Runners can regroup along the way at Revive Stations where there will be plenty of beer, water and, most importantly, safety.
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Had enough of Pumpkin Spice Lattes? It's only just officially turned autumn, and there's still many weeks ahead for enjoying homemade pies, the coziness of your favorite hoodie, the colors of foliage, and harvest festivals. Speaking of...here are three of our favorite autumn harvest festivals in October:
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Hugh Hefner is getting ready to welcome the world's sexiest ghosts and ghouls to the annual Playboy Halloween Party.
The Official Playboy Halloween Party at the Playboy Mansion, taking place on Oct. 25, is known for its haunted houses, spooky performers, musical guests, good eats and, of course, open bars.
As usual, the event is put on by Karma and though the most affordable (as in four-figure) tickets are sold out, there's still a few "VIP" packages in the low five-figures, if you're keen to see with the inside of the infamous mansion looks like. Spoiler alert: VICE found it depressing.
Today is the last day to get discounted tickets to the annual Fetish and Fantasy Halloween Ball at the Hard Rock Hotel and Casino in Las Vegas.
This year's party, which has been called "The Mother Lode of Sexy Soirees", includes 3 rooms and 3 floors of Halloween craziness like the Zombie Wasteland, the Electric Forrest, and the Red Room of Pleasure, complete with a Human Petting Zoo. Mark Lewis, DJ Reza, Scooter & Lavelle are among the DJs scheduled to perform, too.
We’re halfway through August, and before you know it the cooler temperatures and spooky stuff of fall will be here. That means that Halloween marketing is starting to arrive. The candy might not be at the store just yet, but the theme parks are getting ready to celebrate the season—like Universal Studios Hollywood and Halloween Horror Nights.
The park over in California is taking a few pages out of their own film library, as they’re calling on An American Werewolf in London for inspiration on their latest seasonal selection.
The maze opens up for the season on September 19, and it sounds like they’re taking plenty of cues from the original film. Organizers promise totally convincing props, authentic music, and special effects that will scare you silly—especially when it comes to all things werewolf.
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By now, your Halloween costume should be packed away for another year. If you don't want to let go of the spooky holiday just yet, however, the hot television show American Horror Story - Coven is just gearing up for another adventure of the supernatural kind. This time all of the witchcraft action is set in one of America's eeriest cities, New Orleans.
While some of the buildings are re-purposed as sets of the show, a few actually have stories behind them. For example, Madame Lalaurie's House of Horrors is actually known as the Lalaurie Mansion, named after its original owner with a similarly sordid history. Thus, the tour company Roadtrippers has put together a self-guided tour for American Horror Story fans heading for Nola. The AHS tour is fully mapped out with details of each stop already pinned. If you're not that creative to workout your own roadtrip, you can browse the list of recommendations.
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Halloween may be over and November begun, but cobweb decorations and pumpkins on porches won't come down until after this weekend.
The larger windows, raked wings, engine nacelles and undulating stripe livery all paint it (literally) as the United Boeing 787 Dreamliner. Now if only it had a flame inside, it'd be truly authentic. Just kidding!
[Photo: @United on Instagram]
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A good traveler always brings back a little something sweet to share. Halloween is actually the perfect time to show off your impressive foreign candy collection. Of course if you've already eaten it all (and we don't blame you), here's some ideas as to what to fill your candy bowl with next year:
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Want to hear something spooky? There are two graves underneath one of the runways at Savannah-Hilton Head International Airport in Georgia.
If you know enough about airports to realize your flight is departing on Runway 10 (or your pilot requests the "graveyard tour" route from the tower), then you'll want to keep a look out the lefthand side windows for two rectangles patches in the tarmac that simply don't belong. In truth, these spots are graves, which belong in that spot more so than the airport, being original tenants from back when the land was a family cemetery.
The markers of the final resting places of RIchard and Catherine Dotson say "At rest" and "Gone home to rest," respectively. Stories of shadowy figures strolling the runway on low visibility nights circulate among flight crews who frequently land at SAV, so perhaps all the jet engine noise has awoken the Dotsons from their rests?
Over the weekend the rich and the famous got into the Halloween spirit at four of Los Angeles' biggest costume parties.
Glee star Matthew Morrison hosted his fourth annual masquerade soiree at the Hollywood hotspot Warwick. Dozens of Matthew's celebrity friends came out for the bash at the warehouse-turned-nightclub, including Chris Colfer (dressed as a "sexy" R2D2), Chace Crawford (in a police uniform), Revenge actress Christa B. Allen, and Chord Overstreet (wearing a beard as Jax from Sons of Anarchy).
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Well, Halloween is right around the corner and if you haven't even begun to think of your costume for this year, you better get cracking. We already showed you what some airplanes are donning for the spooky holiday, and now it's your turn.
We've hand-picked several travel-related costumes to provide some inspiration. Since there's a week yet to go for perfecting your look, note that some of these are pretty easy while others require more time.