As we head into the final three months of the year, it’s time to start planning for that annual holiday that conjures up memories of small children, cute costumes and bags full of delicious candy.

But if you’re above 12 or 13 years of age, October may mean something entirely different – some memories could be fun and lively while others make your body parts clench and keep you from sleeping at night.

Yes, it’s that time of year when scary clowns pop out from behind trees, bloodthirsty zombies roam the streets at night searching for brains and insane woodsmen chase young people through the woods with chain saws.

Are you ready for Halloween?

Now we know you probably have your favorite Halloween traditions, some scary and some maybe not so much. But if you’re looking for the former, we’ve got a few great ideas for you this October.

But Halloween sites not withstanding, there are several scary and spooky sites in the area that the public can visit year round, and we’ve talked about those before. Take a minute and read all about them if you’re curious about the scary, the spooky and the downright supernatural.

Southern Delaware's Spookiest Sites

For today’s purposes, though, we’re going to focus on some southern Delaware Halloween attractions that are guaranteed to get you in the holiday spirit. These are spread throughout the region and are open for most of the month, so there’s no reason why you can’t visit all of them if you so desire.

We’ll give you as much information as we can on each site, including locations, prices and hours of operation.

Are you ready? Read on, if you dare…

Screams at the Beach (Georgetown). This award-winning and regionally renowned spooky attraction is located at the Sports at the Beach complex on Route 9, just east of Georgetown. Open every Friday and Saturday in October, Screams at the Beach is billed as “6 Years of Fears, 6 Alarming Attractions, 6 Acres You Will Never Forget” and is open from 6:30 until 10:30 p.m. 

Haunted areas of the complex include the “House of Hollows,” the “Cemetery of Sorrows” and, new for 2016, the “Zombie Kill Zone.” Screams at the Beach is one of the top haunted attractions on the east coast of the United States, so be sure not to miss it. Learn more at www.screamsatthebeach.com.

What: Screams at the Beach Haunted Attraction

Where: Route 9, about 4 miles west of Georgetown

Cost: $30 General Admission: $40 General and Zombie Permit; $50 VIV (Very Important Victim) Pass

Opening Day: Friday, September 30


Nightmares Haunted House (Laurel). This site in Laurel was voted the top overall attraction in 2015 by DelawareHauntedHouses.com and is back in 2016 for another season of terrifyingly spooky entertainment. Open every Friday and Saturday in October beginning at 7 p.m., as well as Halloween Night, organizers promise attendees will be “scared like you never have been before.” It’s not recommended, however, for children under the age of 7, so parents please take notice. 

When attending, organizers ask that you please bring a non-perishable food item, which will then be donated to a local charity. Visit www.nightmareshauntedhouse.info for more information on this year’s Nightmares Haunted House.

What: Nightmares Haunted House

Where: 10912 County Seat Rd in Laurel, at the crossroads of Route 9 and Route 13

Cost: $13, with a discount available if you bring a non-perishable food item

Opening Day: Friday, September 30

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Ocean City Screams (Ocean City). New to the “Scream Scene” in 2016 is this haunted house attraction in Ocean City that promises the “biggest, scariest, most intense, state-of-the-art haunted house ever built in Ocean City.” This two-story attraction models an old rusted out cargo ship that reportedly went missing more than 50 years ago and today haunts the Maryland seaside resort. 

If you feel like touring a “ghost ship” teeming with afterlife, paranormal activity and strange members of the crew who survived the historic crash, then Ocean City Screams awaits. A word of caution though – this attraction can get pretty intense and is not recommended for children under the age of 13. Ocean City Screams is open every Friday and Saturday in October, and every day between Oct. 27 and Oct. 31. Visit www.ocscreams.com for more information.

What: Ocean City Screams Haunted House

Where: 14 Worcester Street in Ocean City

Cost: $15 every day and $20 on Oct. 21, 22, 28 and 29

Opening Day: Open Now


Slaughter House Farm (Laurel). This haunted attraction, located on a farm in Laurel, opens once a year during the Halloween season and is known to offer one of the scariest experiences on Delmarva. Located just off Route 13, blood-curdling screams, gunshots and loud music pierce the stillness of the night at Slaughter House Farm as visitors attempt to survive the horror of the experience. 

A haunted corn field, goons and goblins and dozens of other ghoulish surprises await you at this scary good attraction in western Sussex County. Come out for a visit, if you dare! Visit www.slaughterhousefarm.org for more information.

Days of operation for 2016 are Oct. 7, 8, 14, 15, 21, 22, 28 and 29, as well as a special community night on Oct. 31.

What: Slaughter House Farm

Where: 32076 Gordy Road in Laurel

Cost: $13 per person; Community Night on Oct. 31 is FREE

Opening Day: Oct. 7