Alternative Holiday and Winter Events for the Weird
Everyone knows the holidays are a stressful, and extremely busy, time of the year. Make sure to take time for some dark-themed fun so you don’t get burned out from all the holiday cheer and goodwill. Because we’re cool like that, we have pulled together a little compendium of winter and holiday events to re-energize your bodies, spirits, and minds.
Eighth Annual Portland Krampus Lauf
Lace up your Nikes and get ready to dash along Hawthorne Blvd. while rattling your chains and chanting the Krampus Carol. Help Krampus Lauf PDX spread the mirthful terror of the season. Sewallcrest Park, SE 31st Ave. and Market St., Portland, OR 97214//December 10, 4 p.m.-7 p.m.
Fifth Annual Los Angeles Krampus Lauf
Who can resist a bit of “interactive ruckus?” In cooperation with The Downtown Art Walk, Krampus Los Angeles is bringing a little deviltry to the City of Angels. Krampus LA promises “dozens of Krampuses will pursue those deserving the switch. While naughty hipsters can expect playful yet much-deserved swattings, children and more timid grown-ups will be protected by the benevolent St. Nicholas, overseeing festivities from a 19th-century-style steam car.” After the run, adults 21 and older can refresh themselves with a pint at the afterparty. And it’s free, folks! Krampuslauf: Outdoors on Winston St. between Main and Los Angeles, Downtown Los Angeles, CA 90013//December 14, 8-9pm. Afterparty: The Lash, 117 Winston St, Los Angeles, CA 90013//December 14, 9 p.m.-10 p.m.
Ho Ho Horrible Imaginings 2017
Do you dare? Settle in for this spine-tingling film festival that is unlikely to bring any joy to your world. Victims, uh, patrons will be treated to four creepy short films plus a secret feature film. Tickets are $20, and include food and drinks. Seating is limited, so get your tickets here. Digital Gym Cinema, 2921 El Cajon Blvd, San Diego, CA 92104//December 15, 7:30 p.m. – 10:30 p.m.
Batcave Frightmare Before Xmas — A Dark Holiday Tim Burton Party
Celebrate all things Burton at this ninth annual dance party event from the Batcave. Get your oogie-boogie on with a music mix of everything from darkwave, 80s, 90s, goth, and synthpop in the front room, to a stompy selection of Industrial, EBM, and more in the back. Get tickets here. Batcave Hollywood, 3211 Beverly Blvd.,Los Angeles, CA 90057//December 16, 10 p.m. – December 17, 2 a.m.
Dr. Sketchy’s Dark Yule DEC
Enjoy the darker side of the season with underground performers and lots of booze courtesy of Dr. Sketchy’s Anti-Art School Seattle venue. Krampus just might be making an appearance, too. Tickets are $10 + service fee; get yours here. The Conservatory, 5813 Airport Way S., Seattle, WA 98108//December 16, 7 p.m. – 9:30 p.m.
Oddmall: Emporium of the Weird Holiday Show at Bellevue
Take care of your gift shopping with this huge market aimed at lovers of the weird and unusual. It features more than 100 of the most unique vendors, artisans, and crafters in the Pacific Northwest. Get a bite to eat at the food carts, then go meet Krampus. Admission is free. Bellevue College Gym, 3000 Landerholm Cir S.E., Bellevue, WA 98007//December 16, 11 a.m. – 7 p.m., and December 17, 11 a.m. – 6 p.m.
XRAY.fm Holiday Glam and Goth Ball
Join XRAY.fm in dancing the night away with music from DDDJJJ666, Boys Keep Swinging (David Bowie cover band), and more. Attendees are encouraged to mix and match their best glam and goth outfits. Tickets are $10; get them here. The Spare Room, 4830 NE 42nd, Portland, OR 97218//December 16, 8:30 p.m.
Krampus: A Haunted Christmas
Have a frightfully good time at this haunted house event. Krampus himself will be taking over with his own twisted version of favorite holiday stories, as chainsaw-wielding elves and other evil minions chase you through a maze of sheer terror. General admission is $28; VIP Fastpass is $45. Get tickets here or at the door. The Fear PDX Haunted House, 5413 NE Columbia Blvd, Portland, OR 97218//December 15 and 16, 7 p.m. – 10 p.m.
Tattoo: An Exhibition
Body art fans will be glad to take a break from festivities and learn more about “history, technique, motivation, and sheer artistic genius that are connected to one another by ink.” Ticket prices include admission to the rest of the Natural History Museum, so make a day of it. Tickets are $11-$24; get them here. Museum of Natural History Los Angeles County, 900 Exposition Blvd., Los Angeles, CA 90007//Open now, and runs through April 18, 2018.
MIDWESTERN AND SOUTHERN U.S.
Dark Hour Haunted House Presents: Wreck The Halls
“Sentient toys are rising up against their oppressors… Evil Elves. A lonely toy’s wish is granted by an ancient genie bringing life to all the other toys in the world. And they want revenge. So they rise up in arms with the genie, who leads a battle against Krampus and his army of elves. You’re stuck in the middle of this battle royale in a winter wonderland. Who’s side are you on?” Join the fight. Tickets are $15 and up; get them here. Dark Hour Haunted House, 701 Taylor Dr., Plano, TX 75074//December 15, 16, 29, and 30, 8 p.m. – 11 p.m.
Merry Yule with Wendy Rule!
Settle in for a Solstice Ritual Celebration featuring a concert and carol singing led by Wendy Rule. Proceeds will benefit the Common Room Fund for the Ardantane Retreat and Learning Center. Suggested donation is $20 per person. Buy tickets here. Location will be provided after you reserve your seat. Seating is limited. New Mexico//December 21, 7 p.m.
Seeking a Truth: German Art of the 1920s and 1930s
Feast your eyes on this free exhibit featuring photographs, prints, paintings, drawings, and sculptures from German artists during the Weimar Republic period. Includes works from the Bauhaus, New Objectivity, and Dada movements. Minneapolis Institute of Art, 2400 Third Avenue S., Minneapolis, MN 55404//Open now, and runs through February 18.
Disney in Concert: Tim Burton’s The Nightmare Before Christmas
“Haven’t you heard of peace on earth and good will toward men?” “NO!” Watch this iconic Tim Burton classic on the big screen while the Kansas City Symphony brings Danny Elfman’s original score to life. Find ticket links here. Kauffman Center for the Performing Arts, 1601 Broadway Blvd., Kansas City, MO 64108//December 22, 7 p.m., and December 23, 1 p.m. and 7 p.m.
Merry Scary Christmas 48 Hour Film Race Event
This year, all films had to feature an elf hat, a character called Crazy Aunt Caroll, and the dialogue, “I came here to do two things…” Film screenings and awards. Sponsored by Texas Horror Cult. Admission is $5, non-refundable. Texas Theatre, 231 W. Jefferson Blvd.,Dallas, TX 75208//December 11, 10 p.m.
Club Black Fridays‘ fifth annual Sithmas event will feature costume contests with prizes throughout the night, star wars visuals, photo booths, themed drinks, deejays, and dancers. Admission is free. Stache Drinking Den + Coffee Bar, 109 S.W. 2nd Ave., Fort Lauderdale, FL 33301//December 16, 11 p.m. – December 17, 4 a.m.
RSC: MASS The Nightmare Before Christmas Feat. DJ Nemesis
Dance the night away at this event featuring DJ Nemesis and all your favorite music: Synthpop, Dark Wave, EBM, New Wave, Dark Indie, Electro, Industrial, Gothic, and remixes. Cover charge is $5. Respectable Street, 518 Clematis St., West Palm Beach, Florida 33401//December 22, 10 p.m. – December 23, 4 a.m.
Miskatonic NYC Yuletide Terror: Christmas Horror on Film and TV
To celebrate the release of Spectacular Optical’s new book Yuletide Terror: Christmas Horror on Film and Television, contributors Michael Gingold (Rue Morgue) and Kier-La Janisse (House of Psychotic Women) will talk about Yuletide terrors, providing insight on subversive film and television presentations and the complicated cultural history of the Christmas season. Copies of the book will be available. Premiering at the event will be a new Christmas horror short film made to accompany the book by filmmaker Sean Hogan. The film is a chilling ghost story set on England’s southeastern coast called We Always Find Ourselves at Sea. Tickets are $12 in advance or $15 at the door. Film Noir Cinema, 122 Meserole Ave., Brooklyn, NY 11222//December 12, 7 p.m. – 10 p.m.
Punk Rock Flea Market
Hosted by The Captain’s Vintage, this edgy market features more than 100 vendors per day, with different vendors each day. The $3 entry fee is good for both days. What a deal! Bok, 1901 S. 9th St., Philadelphia, PA 19148//December 16 and 17, 10 a.m. – 5 p.m.
Hudson Alternative Art Market
Have fun shopping scary and weird oddities at this market event featuring more than 30 vendors. There is free parking on-site. Venue is handicap accessible. All ages are welcome. Hosted by Jersey City Oddities Market. Kearney Point, 78 John Miller Way, Kearny, NJ 07032//December 16 and 17, 12 p.m. – 6 p.m.
A Frightmare Before Christmas
You’ve never seen Santa Claus like this. Immerse yourself in this all-new haunted holiday experience. Try to get through Dead End Manor: No Home for the Holidays, a terrifying look at Christmas Eve. If you survive that, visit The Factory to see what horrors Santa and his minions are creating in their lair. General Admission is $25; VIP Line Jump is $45. Get advance tickets here. Fright Haven, 411 Barnum Ave. Cutoff, Stratford, CT 06615//Dec. 15 and 16, 22 and 23, 7:00 p.m. – 9:30 p.m.
A Gothic New Years Eve Masquerade Ball 2017
Experience a traditional masquerade ball with a dark twist. The Black Bat Society presents this charity event benefiting the Autism Research Institute. Dance your way into 2018 to the sounds of Dark Wave, Goth, Death Rock, Industrial, Post-punk, and Synth music. Watch entrancing artistic performances from Pittsburgh sideshow and circus performers. Must be 21 or older. Admission is $10 with a mask and $15 without. Cattivo, 146 44th St., Pittsburgh, PA 15201//December 31, 2017, 9 p.m. – January 1, 2018, 2 a.m.
Featured image © Bald Heretic Photography.