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Spooktober: 12 ways to get your scare on in Columbus this month

Mitch Hooper



We know you’re just as excited as us for October to kick off—we’ve seen your Facebook and Instagram posts. Alas, the spooky month is finally upon us and we’ll be damned if we miss a minute of it. Here is an extensive look at the events, screenings, and haunted houses going down this Halloween.

10.11-10.12 | HIGHBALL HALLOWEEN | High St. and the Greater Columbus Convention Center | $10-$150

Photo: Alison Colvin & The Short North Alliance

Extravagant, elevated, and eye-grabbing; HighBall Halloween is back in the Short North. This year will also take place at the Greater Columbus Convention Center where runway fashion will be on full display. Come one, come all—and remember at HighBall, you are what you wear.

10.13-10.20 NINA WEST’S HEELS OF HORROR XII | Axis Nightclub | $15-$50

Axis Nightclub is ready for action in the Halloween season as Heels Of Horror will star Nina and Virgina West in addition to performances by Barbie Roberts, Roxy Nikole, Shawty West, Emily Karn, and more.

10.17-10.20, 10.24-27 PUMPKIN NIGHTS | Franklin Park Conservatory | $11
Explore the Franklin Park Conservatory under the stars as glowing pumpkins light your way.

0.25 HAUNTED FEST | Ohio Expo Center | $50-$85

Photo: Tyler Church

This year’s headliners include Rezz and RL GRIMES as well as perform- ances from Dombresky, YOUNG BOMBS, Beach Boys, Mitch James, and Reckless.


James A. Willis has had an affinity with the spooky and scary, and he’s coming to the Thurber House to share his stories. From UFOs in Ohio to an explanation to what truly happened between James Thurber and an alleged ghost sighting at the Thurber House, this event is sure to send a few chills down your spine.

10.30 (-11.2) TRAUMA FETISH FEST | The Bluestone | $20-$25

Photo: David Heasley

The annual fetish and freak show festival is back, and it’s not for the light of heart. From realistic body paintings, bondage, and aerial acts suspended by hooks in their skin, TRAUMA celebrates all things irregular. Just remember consent is key at this event, so don’t do anything you aren’t comfortable with, and don’t make anyone uncomfortable.


THE 13TH FLOOR HAUNTED HOUSE |2605 Northland Plaza Dr. | $19.99

Scary clowns? Check. Strobe lights and fog machines? Check, and check. Freakish zombies? Yup, they’ve got it all. Stop out at the 13th Floor Haunted House to have all your worst nightmares come to life. ‘Tis the season, right?

CARNAGE HAUNTED HOUSE |1160 Alum Creek Dr., Suite B | $20

Photo: Ethan Clewell

If you’re looking for a haunted house, Carnage Haunted House is here to help and they have plenty of options. This spot makes sure to hit on everyone’s fears as it offers 30 haunted rooms earning it the No. 1 scariest spot in Ohio by The Scare Factor Review. Anyone under 16 will need a supervising adult, and if we’re being honest, everyone should bring a friend or some sort of supervision to be safe.

BRIMSTONE HAUNT | 472 Brimstone Rd. | $8-$27

At Brimstone Haunt, there are three ways to get your scare on. First is the Brimstone Haunted Hayride where you’ll take a tour through a once friendly-farm that is now inhabited by eerie stories and creepy curses. Next is the Forgotten Forest, a chance to hike through a mysterious woods in hopes of finding answers to some of the odd events that have occurred. And the final option is Psychosis, a dark and secluded maze where every turn can make you regret your decision. Either fight your way through, or succumb to the pressure.

ESCAPE FROM BLOOD PRISON | 100 Reformatory Rd. | $25-$45

It’s no secret that the Mansfield Reformatory is a creepy-ass place on its own, but at the end of October, it’s going to get creepier. Here, you’ll have to make your way through the prison after authorities deemed it a lost cause due to the deranged and brutal criminals who took it over. What’s the worst that can happen? Unfortunately, there’s only one way to find out.

10.12 SHOCK AROUND THE CLOCK: 24-HOUR HORROR MARATHON | The Drexel Theater | $45-$50

Keep your coffee close by as you make your way through 24-hours of scary movie screenings and horror-themed conversations. This year’s special guest is Michael Gornick who is responsible for horror classics such as Creepshow, Dawn Of The Dead, and Day Of The Dead. Do you have it in you to make it through 24 hours, or are you too scared?

10.24 NIGHTMARE FILM FESTIVAL | Gateway Film Center | $12-$149

Nightmare Film Festival is just as much a chance to watch classic horror movies as it is to meet others who love them as well. Revel in all of your scary favorite movies, chat it up with the experts, and celebrate all things spooky to end your Halloween adventures.

millennial | writer | human

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Want to get away? Southwest making it cheap




Southwest Airlines is hoping that enough of you are close to feeling safe to leave the house for more than a trip to the grocery store. In a bid to jumpstart their flagging business, Southwest has announced some pretty steep ticket discounts - as low as $49 each way to a host of cities departing from Columbus.

Flights must be booked at least 14 days in advance and travel must happen between May 26 and August 31. Most expect Ohio's 14-day travel quarantine rule to expire by August but be sure to take that into account if you decide to hop on a plane.

Some of the cities and deals we have imagined for you include:

A long weekend in Atlanta: $118 per person roundtrip from Friday, Aug 14 - Sunday the 16th. Keep in mind, it's about 100 degrees in ATL this time of year so be sure to have access to a body of water if you go.

A patriotic, weekend protest in Washington DC: $98 per person roundtrip, 4th of July weekend. See the sights (if they're open to the public) and stand somewhere with a sign with whatever outrage you have in mind.

A long 4th of July beach weekend in Ft. Lauderdale: $198 per person roundtrip from July 3-6 and you can stay at this cute Airbnb apartment that's just one block from the beach for $88/night.

Vegas baby! You're going to have to forget the weekends if you want the great flight deal. But we found August 5-7 available for $198 a person. Plus you can get into the Bellagio for $139 /night right now as an added bonus. Two nights of debauchery, a little gambling and some of the best restaurants in America. What could go wrong?

Of course, traveling may be risky business for some people and this all assumes the respective cities and attractions re-open and are relatively safe. But if you just need to get away, it's probably never been cheaper.

See other flight options here.

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Food & Drink

¡Ándale, check out these 12 Cinco de Mayo fiestas!




It's hard to imagine a Cinco de Mayo without the traditional tequila-induced hangover. Even though you may not be able to sip those margaritas on a sunny patio or at the bar, local restaurants have figured out a way to help you celebrate at home - margaritas included. Here's the not-so-skinny on living out your tequila and enchilada-fueled dreams.

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In order to bring a bit of normalcy back, we've teamed up with @hornitostequila and @daiquiri_daze_popup to open our doors back up for the day and serve a limited offering of some of the faves for Cinco de Mayo. Offerings include but are not limited to our basic-cable famous salsas and Columbus' most missed margs. A party pack for four will include a Spotify playlist and that good Cosecha pebble ice that MIGHT JUST help to make you feel like you're celebrating on our patio. Online pre-orders will start sometime tomorrow at and go to the day of. Walk-in’s are also welcome! Stay safe Columbus. We miss you dearly. Thank you so, so much for your continued support and we'll see you on the other side. Offerings: • Margaritas - Single (Comes with Salt, Lime, and Pebble Ice) - Traditional - Hornitos Reposado, Dry Curacao, Fresh Lime, Agave $8 - Next Episode - Hornitos SIlver, Dry Curacao, Hibiscus, Habanero, Lime $8 • Chips and Salsas $4 Koki's Chips, Roasted Tomato and Mint and Tomatillo-Avocado salsas Single/Extra Salsa $2 • Sage Margarita Jell-O Shot $2 • Cinco De Mayo Pack for 4 $40 (4) Margaritas of your choice, (2) Orders Chips and Salsas, (4) Jello-O Shots, Spotify Playlist, Ice, Limes, Salt, Super Cool Cactus Decanter • Chicken Tinga Taco Kit for 2 $20 (Pre-Order Only) Chicken Braised in Mild Red Chillies, Corn Tortillas, Avocado Salsa, Pickled Red Onion

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Are you ready to celebrate Cinco de Mayo? This year our Fiesta is at your house with our 5 de Mayo Fiesta Combo 🇲🇽 You can get a combo for 2 or 4 Amigos! Each Amigo gets: • One Queso or Guacamole with fresh chips and Salsa 🧀 🥑 • Three Tacos of your choice (Shredded chicken, ground beef, or Al Pastor)🌮 • Two Lime or Flavored Margaritas We will be also dropping some 5 de Mayo T-Shirts inside some orders as a gift! But you can support our team by purchasing one for $10! *Promo available on 5/5/20 all day. Pick up only • • #eat614 #columbusfoodie #columbusfoodscene #topcolumbusrestaurants #614magazine #614eats #buckeyes #happyhour #mexicanfood #margarita #girlsnightout #tacos #guac #collegegirls #collegelife #restaurant #margarita #asseenincolumbus #college #campus #columbusfoodscene #columbusohio #osugrad #ohiostate #socialdistancing #quarantine #quarantinelife #cincodemayo #togetherasbuckeyes #osugrad

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Things To Do

Flanagan’s has your Saturday night covered with unique drive-in concert

Mike Thomas



With the usual slate of summer festivals and events cancelled due to the pandemic, we're going to have to get creative if we want to have any fun at all in the weeks to come. In that spirit, the team at Flanagan's Pub in Blacklick is hosting a special drive-in concert this Saturday, May 2, that offers a good time from the relative safety of your own vehicle.

Described as "Sonic, meets drive in movie, meets live concert" on the Flanagan's Facebook page, this special event running from 6PM-9PM on Flanagan's north lawn will feature live music from artist Brad Moore, with full service carry-out food from the pub also available.

Upon arrival, drivers will directed to the field north of Flanagan's parking lot. Attendants will be on hand aid with parking, and to ensure that a proper space is left between vehicles to promote social distancing. From there, servers wearing gloves and masks will deliver a single use menus to each vehicle and handle all carryout orders. Then, it's just a matter of kicking back to enjoy the show (but please take note: Flanagan's requests that all guests at this event remain in their vehicle at all times).

To aid in parking when you arrive, Flanagan's has produced this handy map:

Flanagan's is located at 3001 Reynoldsburg-New Albany Rd in Blacklick. For more information, visit Flanagan's on Facebook, or reach them by phone at (614) 855-7472.

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