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A red cocktail in a long-stemmed glass stands on a dark table beside piles of tarot cards.
It’s spooky season, witches.
The Gwen

The Ultimate Guide to Halloween 2021 in Chicago

These bars and restaurants have plentiful tricks, treats, and spooky scares

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It’s spooky season, witches.
| The Gwen

Halloween celebrations were muted last year due to COVID-19. And though common sense remains key to a good time, vaccinations also help. With October 31 fast approaching, it’s time to grab a costume and head to some of Chicago’s scariest and most creative seasonal parties. From pop-up bars celebrating classic American horror cinema to spooky circus parties with cocktails and contortionists, these hotspots are offering more than pumpkin beer and Monster Mash. Partiers who strut their stuff in costume may even win cash and prizes.

As of August 20, the city has mandated that everyone wear facial coverings while indoors. For updated information on coronavirus cases, please visit the city of Chicago’s COVID-19 dashboard. Health experts consider dining out to be a high-risk activity for the unvaccinated; the latest data about the delta variant indicates that it may pose a low-to-moderate risk for the vaccinated, especially in areas with substantial transmission. The latest CDC guidance is here; find a COVID-19 vaccination site here.

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Note: Restaurants on this map are listed geographically.

1. Deuce's Major League Bar

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3505 N Clark St
Chicago, IL 60657
(833) 466-3758
Visit Website

Keep those eyes peeled for Freddy Kreuger at this Wrigleyville bar’s Nightmare on Clark Street pop-up, which runs through Sunday, October 31. Staff are betting that thirsty reveler’s mouths will say yes, yes to Halloween drinks like the Monster Mash (Malibu, Midori, pineapple, Sprite) garnished with eyeball and worm candies and Jell-O shot syringes, plus sugary bites such as s’mores brownies. Reservations, which are free and available online, are capped at an hour and a half for parties of no more than six.

2. Hopewell Brewing Company

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2760 N Milwaukee Ave
Chicago, IL 60647
(773) 698-6178
Visit Website

Craft brewery and taproom Hopewell on Saturday, October 30 will transform into a Bob’s Burgers pop-up starring cheeseburger taquitos (vegan options available) from Kite String Catina. The taproom is also a stop on a Beers for Fears trolley crawl that will also include Middlebrow, Solemn Oath, Marz Community Brewing, and Orkenoy. The trolley will stop at each brewery between 3 p.m. and 5 p.m., and patrons to visit all five breweries may earn a prize.

3. Longman & Eagle

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2657 N Kedzie Ave
Chicago, IL 60647
(773) 276-7110
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The team at Logan Square hit Longman & Eagle will host a pumpkin carving event from noon to 5 p.m. on Sunday, October 24 with seasonal treats like apple doughnuts and hot cider (they also promise lots of Jim Beam). Some complimentary pumpkins and carving kits will be available, but attendees can also BYOP to make sure they get in on the messy fun. Proceeds from food and drink will go to abortion-access nonprofit Texas Equal Access Fund.

4. Lottie's Pub

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1925 W Cortland St
Chicago, IL 60622
(773) 489-0738
Visit Website

This longtime neighborhood favorite is going all Jason Voorhees on Camp Lottie, its pandemic-era outdoor dining setup, transforming the glamping-esque arrangement into Lottie’s Camp of Horrors with seven decorated “Tents of Terror.” Email Lottie’s to reserve a tent at lotties@pioneertaverngroup.com. The bar is also holding “Tent Flix & Thrill” movie nights from 5:30 to 8 p.m. every Tuesday and Wednesday through October 27, ranging from scary classics like Scream and Halloween to family-friendly flicks Hocus Pocus and Hotel Transylvania.

5. Utopian Tailgate

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1608 N Wells St
Chicago, IL 60610
(312) 210-7799
Visit Website

Psychedelic rooftop spot Utopian Tailgate in Old Town is also applying a funhouse twist for Halloween, becoming “Dystopian Tailgate” on Friday, October 29 and Saturday, October 30 for a spooky circus party with food, drinks, and costume contests. Revelers can also have their tarot cards read and catch performances from acrobats, jugglers, and fire-twirlers. Ticket packages ($250-$500) and more details are available via Eventbrite.

Brightly colored chairs and tables sit on a green lawn with plants hanging overhead.
This sunny escape will become a scary circus.
Barry Brecheisen/Eater Chicago

6. The Violet Hour

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1520 N Damen Ave
Chicago, IL 60622
(773) 252-1500
Visit Website

This lauded cocktail bar will embrace the creepiest season with the Violet Hour Creature Feature, a two-day celebration of American horror and cinematic scares of the ‘70s and ‘80s — think Carrie, the Thing, and Sleepaway Camp. Costumes are highly encouraged (preferably one that allows for dancing), and patrons can expect an open bar with holiday-themed drinks, snacks, and possibly a slushy “as black as night.” Tickets ($125) and more details are available via Tock.

7. Ina Mae Tavern & Packaged Goods

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1415 N Wood St
Chicago, IL 60622
(773) 360-8320
Visit Website

Big Easy-style restaurant and bar Ina Mae Tavern continues to play on its New Orleans theme with the Halloween pop-up “Ina’s Voodoo Lounge,” which runs Thursday, October 24 through Sunday, November 3. Ina’s offers a mess of events, including a “drive-in double feature” showing tonight of freaky films American Psycho (7 p.m.) and Nightmare on Elm Street (9:15 p.m.). On Wednesday patrons can attend Ina’s so-called drinking bee (“the spelling bee fueled by booze”). The main event, “NOLA Halloween Happy Hour,” comes Thursday with a half-price cocktail menu featuring drinks named for horror movie classics such as Evil Dead and Rosemary’s Baby, an “illusionist” presentation from 5 p.m. to 7 p.m., and a burlesque show at 9 p.m.

8. Heritage Restaurant & Caviar Bar

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2700 W Chicago Ave
Chicago, IL 60622
(773) 661-9577
Visit Website

Cozy and casual, Heritage Restaurant & Caviar Bar will bring back its seafood chain-inspired pop-up Dread Lobster its second year, getting into the silly mood with costumed staff and a special menu featuring mini cheddar biscuits, High Life-battered cod with tobiko tartar sauce, and “tombstone-sized” mozzarella sticks with beet cocktail sauce. The special menu will be available from 4 p.m. to 9 p.m. October 25 - 31.

9. Broken Shaker at Freehand Chicago

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19 E Ohio St
Chicago, IL 60611
(312) 940-3699
Visit Website

In a remarkably quick turnaround, this downtown cocktail spot aims to harness the power of South Korean TV sensation Squid Game starting at 8 p.m. on Friday, October 29. Free reservations are available via Eventbrite. True to its source material, the pop-up hasn’t shared many details save for a few key points: “All inhibitions will be eliminated. Anonymity is of the utmost importance. Mask wearing VIPs will receive welcome punch. I’ll repeat the instructions. All inhibitions will be eliminated. Anonymity is of the utmost importance. Mask wearing VIPs will receive welcome punch. No Cover. Green light.”

10. Aya Pastry

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1332 W Grand Ave
Chicago, IL 60642
(312) 846-6186
Visit Website

For a Halloween treat that is both ghoulish and gorgeous, pop into top-notch bakery Aya Pastry to and check out the special Halloween-themed bonbons from Elle Lei of SUGOi Sweets. Lei is hand-painting the bonbons to resemble jack o’lanterns, bloody eyeballs, spiders, and even Monsters Inc. cyclops Mike Wazowski. Inside, customers will find flavors like candy corn, green apple Pop Rocks, and pumpkin pie. Preorders boxes of six or 12 online for pickup at the bakery starting Saturday, October 23.

a box with 12 bonbons with Halloween decorations
It’s a great season for spooky sweets.
SUGOi Sweets

11. The Gwen, a Luxury Collection Hotel, Michigan Avenue Chicago

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521 N Rush St
Chicago, IL 60611
(312) 645-1500
Visit Website

Downtown hotel the Gwen is also touting tarot this month — specifically, a tarot card-themed menu based on an imagined reading with the late Gwen Lux, a famed sculptor and hotel’s namesake. That translates to drink options like the the Eight of Pentacles (rosemary-infused Tok, pomegranate shrub, topo chico) and the Lovers (X by Glenmoranige, Laphraoig port & wine cairdeas, crème de cacao, solera sherry, cherry liqueur). The menu is available throughout October.

A black table laid with tarot cards and cocktails
Contemplate the universe with a cocktail at the Gwen.
The Gwen

12. Recess

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838 W Kinzie St
Chicago, IL 60642
(312) 801-1181
Visit Website

Massive West Loop patio spot Recess likes to go big, and this Halloween celebration is a case in point: at 8 p.m. on Friday, October 29, it will become an apocalyptic, zombie-ridden Las Vegas a la Netflix hit Army of the Dead. Partiers can count on holiday food and drink menus, games, and a costume contest with a $500 prize. Tickets ($10) and more details are available via Eventbrite.

13. Untitled Supper Club

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111 W Kinzie St
Chicago, IL 60654
(312) 880-1511
Visit Website

Over-the-top River North venue Untitled will mark Halloween with “the Howling 20s,” a party designed to celebrate the “decadence, delight, and (sometimes) danger” of the era. Reps promise three rooms packed with contortionists, pole, and burlesque dancers, plus dance music from DJ Zebo. Costumes are strongly encouraged. Tickets ($10-15) and more details are available via Eventbrite.

14. Ace Hotel Chicago

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311 N Morgan St
Chicago, IL 60607
(312) 764-1919
Visit Website

Ace Hotel will this year throw a three-floor Halloween bash called “As Above, So Below” centered around raucous attractions like “illusions,” burlesque performances, tarot readings, a costume contest, and more. Don’t show up in a humdrum outfit — costumes are required for entry. Tickets and table reservations are available via Resy.

15. Marvin's Food & Fuel

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954 W Fulton Market St
Chicago, IL 60607
(312) 291-9255
Visit Website

Marvin’s in Fulton Market is revving up for its first ever Marvin’s Haunt & Flaunt Halloween Rooftop Party, slated for 8 p.m. to 1 a.m. on Thursday, October 28. Hosted by RuPaul’s Drag Race competitor Denali Foxx, the event will also feature DJ sets, a costume contest with prizes, and a complimentary “blood-red” welcome drink. Patrons must provide proof of COVID-19 vaccination or a negative test within 72 hours. Tickets ($40) and more details are available via Eventbrite.

16. Little Goat Diner

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820 W Randolph St
Chicago, IL 60607
(312) 888-3455
Visit Website

Adult Halloween and kid Halloween are not the same thing, so those in search of an occasion that’s appropriate for families may find success with a kids costume party at 5 p.m. on Friday, October 29 at Top Chef champion Stephanie Izard’s Little Goat Diner. Activities will include pumpkin painting, finger foods, dancing, and lots of treats from Izard’s kooky bakery Sugargoat. Tickets ($25) and more details are available via Tock.

17. Bandit

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841 W Randolph St
Chicago, IL 60607
(312) 666-6061
Visit Website

This festive spot on Randolph Restaurant Row is spreading around the Halloween fun with daytime and evening celebrations. Details are still trickling out, but there’s a ‘90s MTV Music Video Awards-themed event slated for Friday, October 29 and Saturday, October 30. Those who would rather party early can try the Halloween Bottomless Brunch from noon to 3 p.m. on Sunday, October 31 with food, cocktails, and holiday activities like a costume contest and pumpkin decorating. Reservations and more details are available via Tock.

18. Reggies Chicago

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2105 S State St
Chicago, IL 60616
(312) 949-0120
Visit Website

Reggie’s in the South Loop is continuing a unique tradition: a trip to OId Joliet Hunted Prison. For $60, on October 27 customers will get a bus ride and a “skip the line” ticket to a haunted house in Joliet with an escape room and other attractions. Guests must wear masks in doors, the only COVID-19 policy.

19. Maria's Packaged Goods and Community Bar

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960 W 31st St
Chicago, IL 60608
(773) 890-0588
Visit Website

Maria’s annual Halloween dance party will return as “Gravedigger Disco” from 7 p.m. to midnight on Saturday, October 30 with music from DJ BLUNTGOD and Decept. Patrons will be required to show proof of vaccination.

1. Deuce's Major League Bar

3505 N Clark St, Chicago, IL 60657

Keep those eyes peeled for Freddy Kreuger at this Wrigleyville bar’s Nightmare on Clark Street pop-up, which runs through Sunday, October 31. Staff are betting that thirsty reveler’s mouths will say yes, yes to Halloween drinks like the Monster Mash (Malibu, Midori, pineapple, Sprite) garnished with eyeball and worm candies and Jell-O shot syringes, plus sugary bites such as s’mores brownies. Reservations, which are free and available online, are capped at an hour and a half for parties of no more than six.

3505 N Clark St
Chicago, IL 60657

2. Hopewell Brewing Company

2760 N Milwaukee Ave, Chicago, IL 60647

Craft brewery and taproom Hopewell on Saturday, October 30 will transform into a Bob’s Burgers pop-up starring cheeseburger taquitos (vegan options available) from Kite String Catina. The taproom is also a stop on a Beers for Fears trolley crawl that will also include Middlebrow, Solemn Oath, Marz Community Brewing, and Orkenoy. The trolley will stop at each brewery between 3 p.m. and 5 p.m., and patrons to visit all five breweries may earn a prize.

2760 N Milwaukee Ave
Chicago, IL 60647

3. Longman & Eagle

2657 N Kedzie Ave, Chicago, IL 60647

The team at Logan Square hit Longman & Eagle will host a pumpkin carving event from noon to 5 p.m. on Sunday, October 24 with seasonal treats like apple doughnuts and hot cider (they also promise lots of Jim Beam). Some complimentary pumpkins and carving kits will be available, but attendees can also BYOP to make sure they get in on the messy fun. Proceeds from food and drink will go to abortion-access nonprofit Texas Equal Access Fund.

2657 N Kedzie Ave
Chicago, IL 60647

4. Lottie's Pub

1925 W Cortland St, Chicago, IL 60622

This longtime neighborhood favorite is going all Jason Voorhees on Camp Lottie, its pandemic-era outdoor dining setup, transforming the glamping-esque arrangement into Lottie’s Camp of Horrors with seven decorated “Tents of Terror.” Email Lottie’s to reserve a tent at lotties@pioneertaverngroup.com. The bar is also holding “Tent Flix & Thrill” movie nights from 5:30 to 8 p.m. every Tuesday and Wednesday through October 27, ranging from scary classics like Scream and Halloween to family-friendly flicks Hocus Pocus and Hotel Transylvania.

1925 W Cortland St
Chicago, IL 60622

5. Utopian Tailgate

1608 N Wells St, Chicago, IL 60610
Brightly colored chairs and tables sit on a green lawn with plants hanging overhead.
This sunny escape will become a scary circus.
Barry Brecheisen/Eater Chicago

Psychedelic rooftop spot Utopian Tailgate in Old Town is also applying a funhouse twist for Halloween, becoming “Dystopian Tailgate” on Friday, October 29 and Saturday, October 30 for a spooky circus party with food, drinks, and costume contests. Revelers can also have their tarot cards read and catch performances from acrobats, jugglers, and fire-twirlers. Ticket packages ($250-$500) and more details are available via Eventbrite.

1608 N Wells St
Chicago, IL 60610

6. The Violet Hour

1520 N Damen Ave, Chicago, IL 60622

This lauded cocktail bar will embrace the creepiest season with the Violet Hour Creature Feature, a two-day celebration of American horror and cinematic scares of the ‘70s and ‘80s — think Carrie, the Thing, and Sleepaway Camp. Costumes are highly encouraged (preferably one that allows for dancing), and patrons can expect an open bar with holiday-themed drinks, snacks, and possibly a slushy “as black as night.” Tickets ($125) and more details are available via Tock.

1520 N Damen Ave
Chicago, IL 60622

7. Ina Mae Tavern & Packaged Goods

1415 N Wood St, Chicago, IL 60622

Big Easy-style restaurant and bar Ina Mae Tavern continues to play on its New Orleans theme with the Halloween pop-up “Ina’s Voodoo Lounge,” which runs Thursday, October 24 through Sunday, November 3. Ina’s offers a mess of events, including a “drive-in double feature” showing tonight of freaky films American Psycho (7 p.m.) and Nightmare on Elm Street (9:15 p.m.). On Wednesday patrons can attend Ina’s so-called drinking bee (“the spelling bee fueled by booze”). The main event, “NOLA Halloween Happy Hour,” comes Thursday with a half-price cocktail menu featuring drinks named for horror movie classics such as Evil Dead and Rosemary’s Baby, an “illusionist” presentation from 5 p.m. to 7 p.m., and a burlesque show at 9 p.m.

1415 N Wood St
Chicago, IL 60622

8. Heritage Restaurant & Caviar Bar

2700 W Chicago Ave, Chicago, IL 60622

Cozy and casual, Heritage Restaurant & Caviar Bar will bring back its seafood chain-inspired pop-up Dread Lobster its second year, getting into the silly mood with costumed staff and a special menu featuring mini cheddar biscuits, High Life-battered cod with tobiko tartar sauce, and “tombstone-sized” mozzarella sticks with beet cocktail sauce. The special menu will be available from 4 p.m. to 9 p.m. October 25 - 31.

2700 W Chicago Ave
Chicago, IL 60622

9. Broken Shaker at Freehand Chicago

19 E Ohio St, Chicago, IL 60611

In a remarkably quick turnaround, this downtown cocktail spot aims to harness the power of South Korean TV sensation Squid Game starting at 8 p.m. on Friday, October 29. Free reservations are available via Eventbrite. True to its source material, the pop-up hasn’t shared many details save for a few key points: “All inhibitions will be eliminated. Anonymity is of the utmost importance. Mask wearing VIPs will receive welcome punch. I’ll repeat the instructions. All inhibitions will be eliminated. Anonymity is of the utmost importance. Mask wearing VIPs will receive welcome punch. No Cover. Green light.”

19 E Ohio St
Chicago, IL 60611

10. Aya Pastry

1332 W Grand Ave, Chicago, IL 60642
a box with 12 bonbons with Halloween decorations
It’s a great season for spooky sweets.
SUGOi Sweets

For a Halloween treat that is both ghoulish and gorgeous, pop into top-notch bakery Aya Pastry to and check out the special Halloween-themed bonbons from Elle Lei of SUGOi Sweets. Lei is hand-painting the bonbons to resemble jack o’lanterns, bloody eyeballs, spiders, and even Monsters Inc. cyclops Mike Wazowski. Inside, customers will find flavors like candy corn, green apple Pop Rocks, and pumpkin pie. Preorders boxes of six or 12 online for pickup at the bakery starting Saturday, October 23.

1332 W Grand Ave
Chicago, IL 60642

11. The Gwen, a Luxury Collection Hotel, Michigan Avenue Chicago

521 N Rush St, Chicago, IL 60611
A black table laid with tarot cards and cocktails
Contemplate the universe with a cocktail at the Gwen.
The Gwen

Downtown hotel the Gwen is also touting tarot this month — specifically, a tarot card-themed menu based on an imagined reading with the late Gwen Lux, a famed sculptor and hotel’s namesake. That translates to drink options like the the Eight of Pentacles (rosemary-infused Tok, pomegranate shrub, topo chico) and the Lovers (X by Glenmoranige, Laphraoig port & wine cairdeas, crème de cacao, solera sherry, cherry liqueur). The menu is available throughout October.

521 N Rush St
Chicago, IL 60611

12. Recess

838 W Kinzie St, Chicago, IL 60642

Massive West Loop patio spot Recess likes to go big, and this Halloween celebration is a case in point: at 8 p.m. on Friday, October 29, it will become an apocalyptic, zombie-ridden Las Vegas a la Netflix hit Army of the Dead. Partiers can count on holiday food and drink menus, games, and a costume contest with a $500 prize. Tickets ($10) and more details are available via Eventbrite.

838 W Kinzie St
Chicago, IL 60642

13. Untitled Supper Club

111 W Kinzie St, Chicago, IL 60654

Over-the-top River North venue Untitled will mark Halloween with “the Howling 20s,” a party designed to celebrate the “decadence, delight, and (sometimes) danger” of the era. Reps promise three rooms packed with contortionists, pole, and burlesque dancers, plus dance music from DJ Zebo. Costumes are strongly encouraged. Tickets ($10-15) and more details are available via Eventbrite.

111 W Kinzie St
Chicago, IL 60654

14. Ace Hotel Chicago

311 N Morgan St, Chicago, IL 60607

Ace Hotel will this year throw a three-floor Halloween bash called “As Above, So Below” centered around raucous attractions like “illusions,” burlesque performances, tarot readings, a costume contest, and more. Don’t show up in a humdrum outfit — costumes are required for entry. Tickets and table reservations are available via Resy.

311 N Morgan St
Chicago, IL 60607

15. Marvin's Food & Fuel

954 W Fulton Market St, Chicago, IL 60607

Marvin’s in Fulton Market is revving up for its first ever Marvin’s Haunt & Flaunt Halloween Rooftop Party, slated for 8 p.m. to 1 a.m. on Thursday, October 28. Hosted by RuPaul’s Drag Race competitor Denali Foxx, the event will also feature DJ sets, a costume contest with prizes, and a complimentary “blood-red” welcome drink. Patrons must provide proof of COVID-19 vaccination or a negative test within 72 hours. Tickets ($40) and more details are available via Eventbrite.

954 W Fulton Market St
Chicago, IL 60607

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16. Little Goat Diner

820 W Randolph St, Chicago, IL 60607

Adult Halloween and kid Halloween are not the same thing, so those in search of an occasion that’s appropriate for families may find success with a kids costume party at 5 p.m. on Friday, October 29 at Top Chef champion Stephanie Izard’s Little Goat Diner. Activities will include pumpkin painting, finger foods, dancing, and lots of treats from Izard’s kooky bakery Sugargoat. Tickets ($25) and more details are available via Tock.

820 W Randolph St
Chicago, IL 60607

17. Bandit

841 W Randolph St, Chicago, IL 60607

This festive spot on Randolph Restaurant Row is spreading around the Halloween fun with daytime and evening celebrations. Details are still trickling out, but there’s a ‘90s MTV Music Video Awards-themed event slated for Friday, October 29 and Saturday, October 30. Those who would rather party early can try the Halloween Bottomless Brunch from noon to 3 p.m. on Sunday, October 31 with food, cocktails, and holiday activities like a costume contest and pumpkin decorating. Reservations and more details are available via Tock.

841 W Randolph St
Chicago, IL 60607

18. Reggies Chicago

2105 S State St, Chicago, IL 60616

Reggie’s in the South Loop is continuing a unique tradition: a trip to OId Joliet Hunted Prison. For $60, on October 27 customers will get a bus ride and a “skip the line” ticket to a haunted house in Joliet with an escape room and other attractions. Guests must wear masks in doors, the only COVID-19 policy.

2105 S State St
Chicago, IL 60616

19. Maria's Packaged Goods and Community Bar

960 W 31st St, Chicago, IL 60608

Maria’s annual Halloween dance party will return as “Gravedigger Disco” from 7 p.m. to midnight on Saturday, October 30 with music from DJ BLUNTGOD and Decept. Patrons will be required to show proof of vaccination.

960 W 31st St
Chicago, IL 60608

Related Maps