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Ghoulish fun: A sampling of Halloween festivities in Nevada County

Hollie Grimaldi Flores
Special to Prospector

No one will ever accuse Nevada County of ignoring the ghoulish holiday known as Halloween.

History.com states Halloween began “as the ancient Celtic festival of Samhain, when people would light bonfires and wear costumes to ward off ghosts. In the eighth century, Pope Gregory III designated November 1 as a time to honor all saints. Soon, All Saints Day incorporated some of the traditions of Samhain. The evening before was known as All Hallows Eve, and later Halloween. Over time, Halloween evolved into a day of activities like trick-or-treating, carving jack-o-lanterns, festive gatherings, donning costumes and eating treats.”

Though Halloween falls on a Monday this year, there are plenty of activities planned to fill the weekend beginning tonight and concluding on All Hallows Eve, October 31. There are events for all ages, families, teens, adults and even something for the fur babies.

The following is just a sampling of choices to help you celebrate, whether you are warding off ghosts or simply looking for something fun to do!

Begin the celebration tonight with the return of Comedy Night at Miners Foundry featuring T. Wade, Michaela King and Jori Phillips who return after a short hiatus, bringing newcomers Zani Salvatore, Heidi Brown and returning funny man, John Bivens. Tickets are $15 and available at minersfoundry.org.

Tomorrow (October 28) a Halloween Celebration Show happens at Ribald Brewing on Argall Way in Nevada City with Majik Band and other guests beginning at 9 p.m. This trio of musicians will have you swaying on the dance floor with their unique sound.

HorrorFest takes place at NC Media October 28-30. Wander through the haunted studios before entering the viewing chamber where a variety of films will be shown. Tickets are $20 in advance available at nevadacountymedia.org.

On Saturday, there are several choices including a Dancing with The Devil Halloween Party at the Dew Drop Inn on Cerrito Road off Highway 49 in Grass Valley. The evening features a live DJ, 3D projection, costume contest and live performances by special guests throughout the evening with indoor and outdoor dance floors.

The Stonehouse is hosting “Witches Ball” with tarot reading, fortune telling, interactive characters and an immersive theatre cave experience including the music of Spaniol, Tooker and Little Dinosaur b3b Timo Granzotti, as well as aerial and fire performances in what is reputed to be one of the more haunted venues in Nevada County.

Local favorite Achilles Wheel will play at Crazy Horse Saloon for the first time in three years, when they played on generator power during a blackout!

And Saturday features the Disco Inferno Halloween Ball at Miners Foundry. “Boo”gie the night away with Lorraine Gervais and Cassidy Joy, who are back again with 70s Disco tunes and moves, joined by Kate Haight, along with special guests Chris and John Kelly, and backed by the Super Fly Orchestra. This is one of those events people will be raving about for months. The night is open to anyone age 16 and over. Bring your friends, dress in your favorite disco attire, or any costume that suits you, and make your way to the Foundry for a night of disco ball, glitter grooving and boogie oogie moving. You won’t be able to stop yourself from hustling onto the dance floor all night long!

Sunday, October 30, bring the family and the fur-family to downtown Grass Valley for a Halloween Dog Mob. Join the costume parade and win prizes in the costume contest.

Then drop your teens off for a night of fun at 49er Fun Park beginning at 6 p.m. For a night of unlimited mini golf, go-kart, arcade, pizza, raffle and costume contest! Get more information at 49er Fun Park.

For the budding artists, a Haunted House Paint and Sip is offered at 768 S. Auburn Street. Talented instructors will guide participants step by step to create a haunted house painting on 16 x 20 canvas. Tickets are $40 and available by calling 530-362-0990. Or you can Paint and Sip at Gold Vibe Kombuchary on Charles Drive in Grass Valley. This venue will host the guided painting of a raven scene perfect for Halloween décor, while enjoying hard kombucha or a nonalcoholic drink of your choice. Advance tickets are required at Goldvibe.com.

On Halloween, The Grass Valley Downtown Association brings back Safe Trick or Treat Monday from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. as merchants greet preschoolers and their families with free candy on Mill Street.

BriarPatch Food Co-op invites you to enjoy Hoppy Halloween from 1 to 3 p.m., with eerie music, photo booth, games and treats. Stop by for the fun, free event.

And a Halloween Spooktacular is planned at the Rood Center in Nevada City from 3 to 5 p.m. for a fun, family-friendly event. Trick-or-treaters of all ages are welcome. Park at the Eric Rood Center, trick-or-treat throughout the county building, and then take the free Nevada County Connects shuttle to downtown Nevada City, where merchants will open their doors to trick-or-treaters. Shuttles will run between the Eric Rood Center and City Hall every 15 minutes until 7 p.m.

“All ages are invited to roam the festive halls, go on a Spooktacular Scavenger Hunt, and gather tasty treats from each of our departments, where they’ll find a different world behind every door,” said Nevada County CEO Alison Lehman.

You’ll find special activities in both locations including face painting downtown and a scavenger hunt with prizes at the Eric Rood Center. East Broad Street will be closed to traffic at the Y (East Broad and Cottage Street) from 3 p.m. into the evening.

Following that trek, the Fall Family Festival hosted by Twin Cities Church runs from 5 to 8 p.m. at 11726 Rough and Ready Highway. This year the theme is animal adventures with petting zoo, inflatables, bounce houses and 3,000 pounds of candy to give away.

Then, put the kids to bed, get a sitter and celebrate Halloween like an adult Monday night when The Polish Ambassador returns to Miners Foundry. His music and persona make for a magical evening of good feelings that is part dance party, part visual art and always a great time. It’s a dance party from start to finish with high energy and only good vibes. Dress up for a festive evening. The Polish Ambassador has evolved exponentially, from an art project to a vibration; a joyful community that thrives on the dance floor and finds freedom, connection, and collective oneness through this music.

This is just a sampling of the many family-friendly, pet-friendly and adults-only events. Whatever you decide to do, be safe, and have a “Boo”-ti-ful time!

Hollie Grimaldi Flores is a Nevada County resident and freelance writer for hire, as well as a podcaster at HollieGrams. You can hear her episodes at http://www.buzzsprout.com/1332253. She can be reached at holliesallwrite@gmail.com

T. Wade and Michaela King, cofounders of The BVNKR, practice standup as part of Comedy Night happening tonight, October 27, at Miners Foundry.
Submitted photo
Cassidy Joy, Lorraine Gervais, Chris and John Kelly, Kate Haight (who are the Velvet Foxes) are warming up for a Shake Your Booty Disco Inferno Halloween Party at Miners Foundry on Saturday, October 29.
Photo provided by the Miners Foundry/Kim Sayre Photography
FILE — Downtown Grass Valley went to the dogs on Halloween in this 2021 file photo. More than 100 dogs and their owners taking part in the 7th annual PAWSÕitive Pals Dog Training Halloween Pawty.
The Polish Ambassador brings a high energy party to the Miners Foundry stage.
Photo provided by the Miners Foundry
Jori Phillips of Whimsicorp coproduces and performs Comedy Night at Miners Foundry.
Photo provided by the Miners Foundry
FILE — Two year old Jaxson Tomlinson takes in the safe trick or treat event dressed as a firefighter in this 2021 file photo.


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