Tim Burton is right — life’s no fun without a good scare. Here’s where to get your thrills this Halloween.
New York Haunted Hayride
Randall’s Island Park was turned into a garden of fear for the first time last year, and this time New York Haunted Hayride brings even more scares with two new zones: House of Shadows, a pitch-black experience; and Theater Macabre, which brings iconic horror film scenes to life, with you right in the middle of them. There’s also a haunted village for food and drinks, plus more spine-tingling performances. Oct. 13-31, Randalls Island Park
This Is Real
Fans of the David Fincher thriller “The Game,” listen up. Only two tickets are sold to each session of This Is Real, an hour-long “extreme hide-and-seek” immersive theater production starring you — in your own kidnapping. Created by Psycho Clan, who put on the long-running Nightmare haunted house, the experience begins with you watching another victim’s horrific fate — a preview of what will happen to you if you don’t escape. $100, must be 18+, Oct. 20-30, 153 Coffey St., Brooklyn
With Blackout skipping Halloween on the East Coast this year, Blood Manor is your place for high-concept blood-curdling scares. The new residents of the 5,000-square-foot maze include the soul-sucking ghoul named Boki and Maude the cannibal. The last two hours of every night are general admission, in case you’re in the neighborhood and feel like screaming, and express passes ($15) are back. For the really daring, they turn out the lights on the last two days and you’re left to walk through only with a glowstick. $30, Through Nov. 5, 163 Varick St.
Nothing in any of this year’s haunted houses can compare to the dystopia that is the American landscape, out of which political artist Pedro Reyes has crafted Doomocracy, an interactive house of haunts. Much of the anxious display is drawn from the presidential election, but gun violence and climate change (among many others) also get their turn. Who needs actors jumping out at you when you’ve got this kind of psychological horror to haunt your everyday life? The free tickets were all claimed hours after the project was announced, but they’re working on releasing more. Free, through Nov. 6, Brooklyn Army Terminal, 140 58th St.
Sleepy Hollow may be just another quaint little hamlet the rest of the year, but every October Washington Irving’s Headless Horseman is let out to roam once again. The power of your imagination alone will get you pretty far in freaking yourself out, but there’s plenty of real haunts, too, chief among them the Horseman’s Hollow. Walk the trail through a town driven mad by the Horseman to the 300-year-old Philipsburg Manor, home to witches, vampires and ghosts —all servants of the legend himself! $20-25, through Oct. 31, 381 North Broadway, Sleepy Hollow
Gravesend Inn Haunted Hotel
This hotel may look like the old Victorian mansions from the turn of the 20th century, but behind the scenes is some serious state-of-the-art scare technology. Produced by Theatreworks, a CUNY performance tech troupe, Gravesend Inn Haunted Hotel is a testing ground for the latest in low- and high-tech scares, with effects like moving objects and visual effects triggered as you walk through. $10, Oct. 20-31, Voorhees Theatre, 186 Jay St., Brooklyn