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‘The Nation’s Most Elaborate Costume Party’ is this weekend in Cbus, and you’re invited!

‘The Nation’s Most Elaborate Costume Party’ is this weekend in Cbus, and you’re invited!

Sav McKee

Halloween is a favorite holiday among the kid crowd, but for some adults in Columbus, Halloween, and Highball Halloween in particular, is one of the most anticipated events in the calendar year. 

This Saturday, October 28th, High Street in the Short North will transform into a fashion show, costume party, and costume contest, all in one, known otherwise as the annual “Highball Halloween.”

This year, Highball is celebrating its Sweet Sixteen, and none other than Nina West one of the hosts, which is a full circle moment, considering she hosted the first ever Highball sixteen years ago. NBC4’s Monica Day and Matt Barnes will also co-host, as well as Virginia West.

For those unfamiliar, Nina West is a world-renowned Drag Queen who started her roots here in Columbus but has expanded them to TV shows such as RuPaul’s Drag Race and even as Edna Turnblad in the national tour of Hairspray. Nina West said, “It’s not lost on me the importance of a city-wide festival hosted by a Drag Queen. That’s still not common. This proves that Short North and Columbus still value identity and authenticity.”

“I love this event, and I look forward to being back on the Highball stage and celebrating with everyone, and just having a really fabulous homecoming,” said Nina West. “This will be my first performance in Columbus since leaving for Hairspray, before the Pandemic…This event is the thread of who I am as a performer.”

Just as Nina has stayed true to who she is over the years, so has Highball. “It’s what is special about the Short North Arts District,” emphasized Betsy Pandora, Executive Director at Short North Alliance. “The Short North is the intersection of what happens in the city, and it always has been. You don’t have to live here in the Short North to have it be a piece of you.”

At Highball this Saturday, you’ll see a huge costume couture fashion show, with a team of designers that create over-the-top displays of couture costumes, and walk down High St. as their runway. This is their labor of love – these designers have spent the past 3-4 months working on costumes for all of Columbus to witness.

Photo via Highball’s Instagram

There will be a public costume contest, too, with cash prizes and winners in each category. “It’s the place to see and be seen,” remarked Pandora. “You are what you wear – people are fully in character. They’re owning who they are and who they’ve shown up to be. Columbus is ranked one of the top cities in America for celebrations, and Highball is great representation of why.”

Photo via Highball Halloween’s Instagram

And there will be incredible shows, too, with special appearances by Nina West, Mojo Flo, Virginia West, and many others, plus if you upgrade your ticket, you can partake in a meet & greet with Nina West!

Highball Halloween is a true cross section of what the Short North itself was founded on. “It’s all about lifting up identity and creativity – this is not like a haunted house, with gore and guts and blood – Highball is about gathering people together and celebrating the greater pulse and vibe of Columbus,” emphasized Nina West.

If you don’t have any Halloween plans yet, make sure to secure your ticket to America’s most fun Halloween party and costume contest. Visit here for more information and pricing.

Want to read more? Check out our print publications, (614) Magazine and Stock & Barrel. Learn where you can find free copies of our newest issues here!


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