Get vampy and hit this list of things to do in Florida for Halloween. (Photo: meshaphoto/iStock)
Halloween is almost here and if you’re in the Sunshine State, there are plenty of ghoulish and glamorous parties to choose from. Whether it’s a costume party at a beachfront bar, live music at an oceanfront Venetian palazzo or a fantastical parade, Florida has hot Halloween celebrations from Key West to Panama City Beach.
Miami – 29th Annual Halloween Sundowner at Vizcaya Museum & Gardens. Take a step back in time and disguise yourself as you wish at Vizcaya Museum & Gardens’ 29thAnnual Halloween Sundowner bash. Easily the hottest ticket in town, this lovingly preserved grand Mediterranean villa overlooking Biscayne Bay in Coconut Grove was originally built in 1910 as a private estate by John Deering.
It’s one of the most beautiful properties in Miami with an Italian grotto-style limestone deck overlooking the bay and formal gardens leading to the property, modeled after a Venetian palazzo. Guests will enjoy food, drinks, outrageous costumes and live music by Spam Allstars and DJ A-Train, all while also supporting the preservation of the historic party.
The details: Friday, October 30; 8 p.m. – Midnight. Cost: $140 members; $165 general admission.
Tampa Bay – Downtown After Dark: Halloween in the City. Take your Halloween pub crawl to the next level in downtown Tampa with the Downtown After Dark: Halloween in the City party that offers all-access passes to three awesome bars with different theme parties.
Start the night out at Anise Global Gastrobar for the Beetle Juice Horror House Party, then hop over to Spain Restaurant & Toma Bar for a Masquerade Party, and end the night at The Jerk Hut Rhum Bar for their Pirates of the Caribbean Gasparilla Costume Fest. The parties go strong until 2 a.m., so of course, you can always bounce between them all if you want.
The details: Saturday, October 31; 10 p.m. – 2 a.m. Cost: individual passes $15; all access early bird pass $25.
Fort Pierce – KISS Alive Tribute Band at On the Edge Bar & Grill. Spend your Halloween evening on funky Hutchinson Island near Fort Pierce for a wickedly rocking party starring KISS Alive Tribute Band at On the Edge Bar & Grill.
This tiki-style bar on the Fort Pierce Inlet offers a raucous, yet laidback, party atmosphere with an open-air dance floor and gorgeous water views. Come in your spookiest best! A costume contest with prizes will take place at 9 p.m. just before KISS goes on.
The details: Saturday, October 31; 6 p.m. -11:30 p.m. Cost: $15.
Jacksonville – Heroes vs. Villains Party at Suite. Hit the town at one of Jacksonville’s hottest clubs for Halloween at SUITE Jacksonville and their Heroes vs. Villains party. Decide on your alter ego and dress to impress as your favorite hero or villain for the costume contest with $1,000 in cash prizes.
This ultra lounge is all about “social sophistication” offering the best in cocktails, entertainment and hospitality – get ready for a swanky and fun night out. The details: Saturday, October 31; 9 p.m. -1 a.m. Cost: $10 general admission; $25 VIP with open bar 9:30-10:30 p.m.
Panama City Beach – Spinnaker Beach Club’s Annual Halloween Bash. Benefitting Toys For Kids Foundation, hit up Spinnaker Beach Club’s Annual Halloween Bash, the funky beachside bar offering multiple rooms and an indoor-outdoor party with something for everyone.
Start the night out with a costume contest at 8 p.m. with a Rocky Horror Picture Show theme. Then get ready for the Pensacola-based Gypsy Riot to take the mainstage at 10 p.m. Throughout the night, you can hop around the entertainment complex and perform karaoke with a live band or get your dance on in the Groove Room.
The details: Saturday, October 31; 8 p.m. – Late. Cost: Free.
Key West – Fantasy Fest. In Key West, locals don’t celebrate Halloween, they celebrate Fantasy Fest, a week-long festival at the end of October with parties at local bars and on the streets that go all day and night.
This year, the final night happens to fall on Halloween, culminating in the main event, a parade down Duval Street. Revelers outfit themselves in crazy costumes, body paint, glitter and beads. This year’s theme is “All Hallows Intergalactic Freak Show,” so interpret that however you will and leave your inhibitions at home.
The details: October 23 – November 1. Cost: Free; individual bars and parties may charge a cover.