You could wear a mask and scare people or bob for whiskey-soaked apples and call it a night. You could walk your costumed kids and get home early for American Horror Story: Cult. That's a typical Halloween. Yet for those who tag Halloween as their favorite holiday, there are plenty of alternative events.
There's something creepy crawly about actors from the Mechanical Theater doing their own sinister adaptation of the horror classic in a cemetery in the cool night air.
7 p.m. Thursday, Friday, and Saturday, Laurel Hill Cemetery, 3822 Ridge Ave., $25, thelaurelhillcemetery.org/events/dracula
As bizarre as it gets: a mash-up of an actual, flashy Gorgeous George wrestling match (yes, the Philadelphia Mausoleum of Contemporary Art puts up an official canvas ring), with an interactive audience-participation costume contest where all are encouraged to dress as their favorite wrestling character. AWFUL stands for Art Wrestling Federation Urban League. MOCA curator Eric Bressler will air the worst pro-wrestling videos on the big screen between matches.
7:30 p.m. Friday, Philadelphia Mausoleum of Contemporary Art, 531 N. 12th St., $5, philamoca.org
There's something oddly titillating — even old-world charming — about seeing old Goth kids and steampunks gathering at a gallery to party in costume around old bones, diseased kidneys, and miles of rotten internal organs. Plus, you can gain access to the library-bound Club 13 VIP experience, but you have to wear a tall steampunk hat for that.
6:30 p.m. Friday, The Mutter Museum, 19 S. 22nd St., $50, muttermuseum.org
Here's punk-rock history, Halloween-style. Philadelphia punk-scene vets from Pink Slip Daddy and Dixy Blood were once Sic Kidz, a band that not only happily aped the shockabilly of the Cramps — they became pals with the Cramps' spooky front couple, Lux Interior and Poison Ivy. Plus, guitarist Kid Congo was one of the Cramps' most distinctively noisy members and pretty frightening himself. Boo.
If any rangy young band was going to make a release party for a new record (Dancing Out the Door) into its own private hellscape, it's Philly's raucous TJ Kong, which, for the last several years, has turned Halloween into a costume party turned séance turned gooey, messy bloodbath. (Think the bucket scene from Carrie with guys with beards.) Now, do the Monster Mash with performance-music act Red 40, also on the bill.
9 p.m. Saturday, Underground Arts, 1200 Callowhill St., $12-$22, undergroundarts.org
Jacky Bam Bam is one of Philly's most visually arresting DJs — The Stones' Ron Wood meets Nick Cave — and a Halloween affair with the WMMR personality upon this mighty ship promises to be just as flashy as his appearance.
Boarding begins at 11:30 p.m. Saturday, Spirit of Philadelphia, 401 S. Columbus Blvd., $39.50, spiritcruises.com
Enjoy a three-course meal, a screening of Tod Browning's original 1931 film Dracula, starring Bela Lugosi, and a XIX-designed Halloween cocktail, "the Impaler," made with candy corn-infused vodka.
7:30 p.m. Tuesday, XIX Restaurant at the Hyatt at the Bellevue, 200 S. Broad St., $65, philadelphiabellevue.hyatt.com
Henri David has forever reached out to the LGBTQ crowd and made his ball their ball, creating a universal affair for all. This ball boasts a dedication to complex costuming that is downright obsessive, with attendees who work all year to top their previous year's outfit. "I'm doing something I haven't done in years — including myself in the act who'll perform at midnight," David says of the surprises planned for 2017's ball. "It's going to be funny because she [a world-renowned female impersonator David is keeping secret] is gorgeous and glamorous, and I'm, you know." As for his famously cloak-and-dagger approach to his cloaks and daggers, David pleads the fifth — again. "I can't tell you anything, save to say that if you look at it too long, you'll be hypnotized."