October in Colorado means cooler days and beautiful fall foliage. But this month has a fun, spookier side, with the tricks and treats of Halloween. Take a lantern-lit tour through a cemetery in Glenwood Springs, soak in some horror flicks in Telluride or visit a haunted hotel in Ouray. Here are six spooky activities to get you into the Halloween spirit.
Bizarre Tour of Crime in Boulder
Hear ghost, crime and history stories as the Banjo Billy bus rolls along Boulder’s spookiest haunts. Bus stops include the Hotel Boulderado, Mount St. Gertrude Academy (supposedly haunted by the ghost of Sister Mary Theodore O’Connor) and the University of Colorado’s Macky Auditorium (the site of the 1966 murder of 20-year-old CU student Elaura Jeanne Jaquette, who was raped and beaten to death in Macky’s west tower). Ghost tours run Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays through October.
Coffin Races in Manitou Springs
The legend of Emma Crawford lives again on Oct. 30 during the annual Emma Crawford Coffin Races down Manitou Avenue. Costumed impersonators of Emma, a 19th-century local who was buried in nearby Red Mountain, ride on coffins pulled by teams of “mourners.” Although her coffin washed away years after her burial, she is said to still haunt the mountain town.
Ghosts and Graveyards in Glenwood
Stay at the haunted Hotel Colorado in Glenwood Springs and try to catch a glimpse of the ghosts. Watch for the murdered chambermaid who appears at night near the Devereux dining room or the ghost of the young girl who died inside the hotel.
For more spooky lore, take a lantern-led tour of Linwood Cemetery, where you’ll hear about Glenwood’s past in graveside tales of John “Doc” Holliday, Kid Curry and other miners and pioneers. Weekend tours begin Oct. 15 through Halloween.
Rocky Horror in Telluride
For three days, horror fans can experience the latest independent horror films in Telluride’s historic Sheridan Opera House and Nugget Theater. The inaugural Telluride Horror Show, running Oct. 15-17, features films, shorts and special programs, as well as gives film-goers a chance to party.
While in town, visit the Telluride Historical Museum, a former miners’ hospital that now is reportedly haunted by the ghosts of patients past.
Ghouls Night Out in Ouray
Wednesdays through Sundays in October, you can take advantage of Ouray’s spooky package for two. Take a haunted tour of Ouray, then enjoy your favorite beverage at the Beaumont Hotel – the alleged home of a murdered young woman’s ghost. After that, you can try to sleep in a comfy room for two at the Box Canyon Lodge & Hot Springs. The $139 package includes the trip to Ouray.
Spirits in the Denver Botanic Gardens
Denver Botanic Gardens was once part of the City Cemetery back in the mid-1800s. Take the Ghosts in the Gardens Tour to hear eyewitness reports from past and present gardens staff about decades of paranormal activity. The night will lead you throughout the gardens and to the old Waring House mansion.
Tour-takers are welcome to bring voice recorders and cameras to try and capture something from the other side. Tours take place Oct. 15, 23, 29 and 30.