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Checking out some of Nashville's best Halloween attractions, from haunted houses to fright films

Pumpkin Panorama




Bloody Acres Haunted Woods: "In these woods no one will hear you scream," beckons Gallatin's 14-acre forest of fear. Admission $15. Open through Halloween; 318 Big Station Camp Blvd., Gallatin, 974-8589

Dead Land Haunted Woods: Choose your path carefully on this eerie trail just south of Lebanon on Highway 231 — one route leads to Confederate chills ("The Curse"), while the other rips open the world of the dead ("The Portal")! Admission $15, $25 for both trails. Open 7 p.m.-midnight Friday and Saturday only; 7040 Murfreesboro Road, Lebanon

Death Row — Sanitarium of Slaughter: This reliable Music City bloodbath offers 80,000 square feet of fear — much of it given over to mad scientists practicing their home-surgery skills on unlucky stiffs. Forget the dude dressed as Leatherface: The dimly lit old prison facility gives off evil vibes galore. Admission $12, cash only. Open Friday through Halloween; 418 Harding Industrial Drive, 833-1433

Death Valley Haunted Woods: After 20 years, this Hendersonville horror house is shutting its crypt gates for good. Show up and bid "scarewell" to Chainsaw and Scissor Hands! Admission is $15; open Friday through Halloween;, 769 W. Main St., Hendersonville

Devil's Dungeon: This year, East Nashville's 20,000-square-foot repository of evil delivers more than 30 scenes of depravity — so scary it won't even tell you what they are! Come for the hellish torment, stay for the food trucks. Admission $15. Open Friday through Sunday and Halloween; 510 Davidson St., 256-0053

Ghouls at Grassmere: Kids need scaring too — one reason the Nashville Zoo's annual Halloween bash draws more than 20,000 people each year. This year's new attraction is the 3-D Eerie Estate, stocked with scares by O'More College of Design students. This is the last weekend, 5-9 p.m. Thursday through Sunday. Tickets are $15, $12 for members; Nashville Zoo at Grassmere, 377 Nolensville Road, 833-1534

Millers Thrillers Haunted Woods: Wanna hear the most awesome innovation in haunted-house history? Three words: zombie paintball hayride! There's also a Haunted Woods, and for pacifists a cozy bonfire, a Zombie Drum Line and other attractions. Admission $15 Haunted Woods, $20 Zombie Paintball, $30 combo. Open 7-11 p.m. Friday through Sunday, closed Halloween. 1431 Carters Creek Pike, Columbia

Monster Mountain: Totally worth the haul out I-65 to Millersville, about 20 minutes north of Nashville, this fest of free-range fright has quickly developed a rep as one of the coolest haunted houses in the South. This year, the cutting room is murder at Hackenstein Von Splatterhaus' blood-soaked backlot. Admission is $15; open Friday-Saturday and Halloween; 273 McMurtry Road, Millersville, 569-FEAR

Nashville Nightmare: At its impressive website, Music City's monster mash of mayhem promises a second season of "highly detailed scenes, state-of-the-art animations and special effects, with very intense actors." Admission $15 for both haunted houses, $25 VIP for line preference. Open Friday through Sunday and Halloween; 1016 Madison Square, Madison, 752-5663

Scream Creek Haunted Woods: Why drive to Texas for a chainsaw massacre? Every fall, Springfield's Honeysuckle Hill Farm converts part of its vast acreage into corn mazes, pumpkin patches and other Halloween attractions. At night, though, it's not for small children, as the hills have eyes. Admission starts at $15, $20 for all on-site offerings. Friday and Saturday only; closed Halloween. 1765 Martins Chapel Church Road, Springfield, 382-7593

Slaughterhouse 2011: "Nashville's longest-running haunted attraction" serves up headbanger horror and gore galore to a throbbing soundtrack. Admission $15. Open Friday through Halloween. 423 Sixth Ave. S.


• Gory thrills await at The Belcourt's 12 Hours of Terror, Nashville's own horror-movie marathon, co-presented by the Scene Saturday, Oct. 27, from noon to midnight. Pay up your life insurance before this triple-dare test of fright-film endurance, including Mario Bava's grindhouse gem Twitch of the Death Nerve, the jaw-dropping rarities Messiah of Evil and Society, and the Nashville premiere of Joseph Kahn's sense-deranging sci-fi splatter comedy Detention. Dr. Gangrene serves again as master of cemeteries, with plenty of vintage horror trailers, food and drink specials, and other surprises. (See the film story on p. 62.) Admission $18, $14 Belcourt members. 2102 Belcourt Ave., 383-9140

• On Sunday, The Belcourt's salute to Universal Horror offers the deliciously twisted double bill of Edgar G. Ulmer's The Black Cat, with Boris Karloff and Bela Lugosi, and James Whale's peerless The Bride of Frankenstein, with Karloff joined by electro-coiffed Elsa Lanchester. The series concludes Halloween night with the Creature from the Black Lagoon reaching into the audience ... in real-deal 3-D! Also playing The Belcourt midnight Friday and Saturday is The Rocky Horror Picture Show. 2102 Belcourt Ave., 383-9140

• With those tapering talons, Max Schreck would have made only clacking noises at the console of the Schermerhorn Symphony Center's Martin Foundation Concert Organ. Not so organist Tom Trenney, who supplies suitably spooky accompaniment for F.W. Murnau's silent shocker Nosferatu 8 p.m. Monday. Tickets $23-$46. One Symphony Place, 687-6500

• Egad! There's a buzzing in my pants! MTSU's Student Union Video Theater shows William Castle's gimmicky 1959 horror opus The Tingler 6 p.m. Monday as part of its "October Scarefest" series. Same time Tuesday, same location: Tod Browning's uniquely unnerving Freaks. Middle Tennessee State University, Murfreesboro, 898-2551

• If evil al fresco is more your speed, Watertown's Stardust Drive-In offers Paranormal Activity 4 on one screen and Hotel Transylvania on the other Friday through Sunday. The first feature starts at 7:30 p.m. Admission $7.50 adults, $5 kids 6-11. See website for directions. 310 Purple Tiger Drive, Watertown, 237-0077


• Tennessee Rep's well-reviewed new production of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde offers not two but four faces of terror; to say more would spoil its fiendish surprises. Tickets $42.50. Tennessee Performing Arts Center, 782-4040

• Back to put the double D's, er, E's in Halloween are the vampiric vixens of Music City Burlesque, who'll make you jack o'lantern at their fifth annual BOOlesque spectacular 8 p.m. Friday! See Kinetic Kristen's pumpkins glisten while Rose Hips' crypt unzips your lips! Freya West will make the dead rise — from your lap! Tickets $20 at the door. Marathon Music Works, 1402 Clinton St., 891-1781

• Shiver with antici ... pation for The Rocky Horror Show, brought back for a second serving of Transylvanian transvestism through Nov. 3 by Franklin's Boiler Room Theatre. Don't just sit there, say something! It's good for relieving your ... tension. Tickets $27; The Factory at Franklin, 230 Franklin Road, 794-7744

• Emcee "Phil Graves" (ba-dum-PAH!) helps the cast of Street Theatre Company's Macabaret knock 'em dead with original tunes such as "Marriage Is Murder" and "Dead End Job." Come in costume and win prizes at Thursday's closing-night performance. Tickets $18. 1933 Elm Hill Pike, 554-7414


• A fall favorite in Music City, Cheekwood's 13th annual Day of the Dead Festival draws huge crowds to the mansion's grounds at the height of their autumn splendor. Running 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday, Oct. 27, the festival mixes food, crafts, Latin music and dance ensembles and participatory events with insight into the Latin American cultural celebration, which honors death as part of the ongoing cycle of living. And be sure to stroll the grounds to see the scarecrows in their spooky finery! Tickets $12, but members and ages 17 and under are admitted free. 1200 Forrest Park Drive, 356-8000

• Tour Music City's hot spots of supernatural affliction by foot and hearse with Nashville Ghost Tours, which offers special times this weekend for its famous tours of the city's most accursed taverns and townhouses. Especially popular is the Haunted Downtown Nashville tour, conducted by lantern. Prices range $8-$25. Reservations required by calling 884-3999;

• From 10 a.m. to 9 p.m. Saturday, Oct. 27, Franklin's 29th annual Pumpkinfest converts the picturesque town into a village of unearthly horrors — as well as the backdrop for a chili cook-off, live music, dance performances, children's activities, more than 75 arts and crafts vendors, the Taste of the South tent, and guided nighttime tours of the Old City Cemetery and Rest Haven Cemetery. Free and open to the public until 6 p.m., though some events require separate tickets; Downtown Franklin

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