Plenty of Halloween scares available in metro area

Atlanta’s Halloween-related activities offer more boos than a poltergeist powwow. The challenge remains choosing from a wide range of options — the monstrously massive to the sensationally scary to more benign and festive family fare. Before you know it, you’re marking up your calendar like the boogie man in a slasher film. The following list, however, may help you narrow it down.

Fright Fest at Six Flags Over Georgia

This year’s version of the theme park’s annual eerie event will be the largest in Six Flags history. According to Dale Kaetzl, president of Six Flags Atlanta Properties, guests have been asking for souped-up scares. Six Flags answers with seven shows, five haunted mazes and 11 scare zones. The latter are portions of the park inhabited by things going bump in the night. This year’s new additions include Big Top Terror, a maze taking place inside a sinister circus. Time-honored favorites return, including a chilly choo-choo ride aboard Terror Train and “Dr. Fright’s Dead Man’s Party,” a live show at the Crystal Pistol Music Hall. In the age of selfies, photo ops haunt Fright Fest in the form of Fright Faced, an interactive scare zone where visitors can pose for pics alongside their favorite creatures. Hearts continue to pound on thrill rides such as the Joker Chaos Coaster, Batman: the Ride, Goliath and Superman: Ultimate Flight. Before the sun goes down, kids can partake in a harvest festival, arts and crafts, pumpkin painting and a costume contest with Bugs Bunny and other Looney Tunes characters.

6 p.m.-midnight Oct. 2 (season pass holders only); noon-midnight Oct. 3; noon-10 p.m. Oct. 4; noon-midnight Oct. 10; noon-10 p.m. Oct. 11; 6 p.m.-midnight Oct. 16; noon-midnight Oct. 17; noon-10 p.m. Oct. 18; 6 p.m.-midnight Oct. 23; noon-midnight Oct. 24; noon-10 p.m. Oct. 25; 6 p.m.-midnight Oct. 30; noon-midnight Oct. 31; noon-10 p.m. Nov. 1. Online prices: starting at $43.99 without Haunted Attractions Pass; starting at $58.99 with Haunted Attractions Pass. At the park: $63.99. Six Flags Over Georgia, 275 Riverside Parkway, Austell. 770-948-9290, sixflags.com.

Netherworld Haunted House

Arguably one of the most acclaimed Halloween attractions in the country, Netherworld attempts to reinvent itself each year for its throngs of frightened fans. For 2015, it serves up a pair of scares, both armed with new scenes and environments. The Rotting tells the story of evil spirits intent on turning humans into the undead. Visitors explore an arena of ghosts, a tunnel filled with ghouls and more. Vault 13: Unearthed takes guests down into a secret government base where monstrous creations threaten to escape. Stay clear of the toxic foam.

7:30-10:30 p.m. Sundays-Thursdays; 7 p.m.-midnight Fridays-Saturdays through Nov. 1; 7-11 p.m. Nov. 6-7. The Rotting: $22-$25. The Rotting and Vault 13: Unearthed: $28-$35, $50-$55 Speedpass. Georgia Antique & Design Center: 6624 Dawson Blvd., Norcross. 404-608-2484, fearworld.com.

“The Ghasty Dreadfuls: Raising Spirits”

Just when you thought it was safe to enter the Downstairs Theater at Center for Puppetry Arts, a spectral sound emanates from the depths. Live music, Halloween tales and, of course, puppets can mean only one thing: “The Ghastly Dreadfuls” is back. The center’s artistic director, Jon Ludwig, and head puppet builder Jason Hines resurrect the “Dreadfuls” after a two-year break. Ages 18 and older may be tapping their feet and shivering with laughter as this comedic creep show spins stories and song. Spirits of another kind — think beer and wine — can be had at the Tavern of Lost Souls.

8 p.m. Wednesdays-Saturdays Oct. 14-31. $25; $18.75 for members. Center for Puppetry Arts, 1404 Spring St. N.W., Atlanta. 404-873-3391, puppet.org.

Little 5 Points Halloween Festival and Parade

Leave it to Atlanta’s counterculture haven to lay claim one of the city’s most storied Halloween events. Now in its 15th year, the festival and parade dish out tricks and treats from noon until 11 p.m. Live music on two stages, oodles of food vendors, and arts and crafts highlight the day. Yet the event’s beaming jack-o’-lantern continues to be the two-hour parade, which steps off at 4 p.m. The over-the-top seasonal procession, featuring frightening floats, marching bands and more, begins at the intersection of Euclid and Austin avenues, hangs a right on Moreland Avenue, makes a u-turn in front of the Wrecking Bar Brewpub and wraps at Moreland and Freedom Parkway. This year’s grand marshal will be Steve Harris, owner of Variety Playhouse, the Little 5 Points performance venue celebrating its 25th anniversary.

Noon-11 p.m. Oct. 17. Free. Little 5 Points. l5phalloween.com.

Stone Mountain Park

A duo of decidedly different Halloween events sprout once again at Stone Mountain Park. The 12th annual Pumpkin Festival promises a family-friendly, hands-on Halloween experience. An interactive game show, storytelling, an adventure maze, a parade, trick or treating, a scavenger hunt, a pie-eating contest and more fill the day like a candy-stuffed sack. Those willing to brave scarier tales can explore the Tour of Southern Ghosts for its 30th anniversary. The park’s lantern-lined Antebellum Plantation area plays host to storytelling of the spooky kind. The 45-minute tour features yarn spinners decked out in period dress.

Pumpkin Festival: 10:30 a.m.-5 p.m. Fridays; 10:30 a.m.-7 p.m. Saturdays; 10:30 a.m.-5 p.m. Sundays through Oct. 24. Adventure Pass: $24.95-$29.95 with discounts available online. $15 daily parking, $40 annual permit. Tour of Southern Ghosts: 7-9:30 p.m. Fridays-Saturdays; 7-9 p.m. Thursdays and Sundays. $14, $6 ages 12 and younger. $12 adult tickets available at Art Station, artstation.org. $15 parking; $40 annual permit. Stone Mountain Park, 1000 Robert E. Lee Drive, Stone Mountain. 1-800-401-2407, stonemountainpark.com.

"The Sleepy Hollow Experience"

Imagine stepping right between the pages of Washington Irving’s “The Legend of Sleepy Hollow,” the Headless Horseman hot on your trail. The folks at Serenbe Playhouse do it once again for their third revival of “The Sleepy Hollow Experience,” an immersive theatrical happening. Thanks to set designer Adam Koch, guests venture into the middle of the woods, finding themselves on the Horseman’s home turf. The set includes a skeleton version of Tarry Town, complete with a covered bridge made from hundreds of recycled shipping pallets. As the death toll rises, don’t lose your head.

8 p.m. Wednesdays-Sundays; 8 and 10 p.m. Fridays and Saturdays through Nov. 1. $25. Serenbe Playhouse, 10950 Hutchesons Ferry Road, Chattahoochee Hills. 770-463-1110, serenbeplayhouse.com.

Atlanta Symphony Orchestra

The ASO gets its Halloween on in a big way by orchestrating a pair of concerts for the season of the witch. Its family-friendly Halloween Hijinks show kicks off Halloween afternoon with music from the “Harry Potter” films, and spooky symphonic tunes such as “The Sorcerer’s Apprentice” and “Night on Bald Mountain.” Costume-wearing kids can compete in a contest, and they have the opportunity to get up close and personal with the instruments before the show with the Instrument Petting Zoo. Later in the evening, the ASO will cast a cinematic spell with Danny Elfman’s Music From the Films of Tim Burton. Elfman and imaginative director Burton have been collaborating for nearly three decades. Expect to hear music from such joint projects as “Beetlejuice,” “Batman,” “Edward Scissorhands,” “The Nightmare Before Christmas,” “Alice in Wonderland” and more.

Halloween Hijinks: 2 p.m. Oct. 31. $15-$20; Danny Elfman's Music From the Films of Tim Burton: 8 p.m. Oct. 31. $20-$65. Symphony Hall, 1280 Peachtree St. N.E., Atlanta. 404-733-4900, atlantasymphony.org.

Fear the Woods

Fear the Woods is a professional haunt that offers four separate activities.  When the farmer goes to bed at night and the animals are put away in the barn, these fields are over run with gruesome spirits and creatures.  They restlessly wander through the fields and trees looking for their next prey.  Do you dare venture into the woods after dark? Remember, only the trees will hear you scream in the haunted house, haunted outdoor trail and the new haunted bus ride.  If you are brave and seek revenge, try the Zombie Paintball Hayride.  While on the hayride, you will have a chance to control the live zombie population in our corn field.

Haunt opens Oct. 2.  Friday and Saturday 7 p.m.- 12 p.m. and Sunday 7 p.m.-11 p.m.  Visit www.fearthewoods.com. Tickets for Haunted House, Bus Ride, and Haunted Trail $17 for adults, $15 for children 12 and under.  Zombie Paintball $17 for adults and  $15 for children 12 and under. Adult Combo is $30.

Join us for family fun when the sun is out and the farmer is awake.  Weekdays 4-7 and weekends 10-6.  Visit www.yuleforest.com for more information.