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Scary and fun local theater, and the hottest haunted houses

Here are a few Halloween-related things to do this week, a little fun for the whole family.
The Brody Theater, Portland’s most consistently funny improv. group, will be presenting “Scary Movie,” a Halloween horror show. (Yes, they know about the movie. And, yes, they do claim it was theirs first.) Anyway, “Scary Movie” performs Fridays and Saturdays at 8 p.m. through Nov. 3.

If candy won’t alleviate your urge for improvisational theater you’re in luck. The Brody Theater will again be hosting the Fourth Portland Improvised Theater Festival Nov. 4 – 11. The festival will include workshops, guest directors and performances from improv. troupes from around the country and the Brody’s very own ensemble Scrap heap. For more information on the festival or “Scary Movie” call 503-224-0688.

Well, since Halloween falls dead in the middle of the week you’ll have to divide yourself in two and attempt to partake of each weekend’s festivities. Two places frightening enough on their own without being dressed-up for the festivities are the baseball park (particularly after the M’s finals fiasco) and a shopping mall.

With that in mind PGE Park will be hosting “Field of Screams” a doubleheader of scare, fright and ghouls. Lurking beneath the park the “Triple Maze of Horror” and “Dungeon of Doom” wait for the unsuspecting. Prices are $8 for “Triple Maze of Horror,” $10 for “Dungeon of Doom” and $14 for both terrifying experiences. “Field of Screams” opens 7:30 p.m. nightly and runs through Oct. 31. For more information call 503-889-8847.

Less inclined for bloody horror but still looking for a little scare? The Jantzen Beach Mall is offering “Terror World” up for sacrifice. Touted as a family experience, “Terror World” is a mini-theme park of sorts housing a castle, a dungeon and a dragon’s cave. During the day, 10 a.m. to 3 p.m., storytellers will escort the smaller kids through the park for $4 which includes a ride on the carousel. When night draws a dark hood over the world “Terror World” becomes more adult oriented and attempts to “scare the pants off you.” If interested it runs from 6 until 10 p.m. weekdays and until 11 p.m. Friday and Saturday. “Terror World” closes Oct. 27. Tickets are $9 per person and $12 for unlimited trips through, but only for that night.

The 3rd Floor, Portland’s longest running sketch comedy troupe, brings its 3rd bi-annual Halloween show, “Pi-ata full of blood,” to The Miracle Theater. Self-proclaimed providers of “maximum capacity sketch comedy” they’ll put up their 25th production on Friday, Oct. 26 at 11 p.m. and Saturday, Oct. 27 at 12:15 a.m.

If this is anything like their past show “Full metal pantsuit,” “Pi-ata” should be a real scream. And I mean that. I do.

For information and tickets, $8 at the door, call 503-258-1681.

Prior to The 3rd Floor’s “Pi-ata full of blood,” at the Miracle Theatre is “El Dia de los Muertos Festival.” The seventh annual festival will focus on the traditions of “el dia” through the eyes of children. The Miracle Theatre Group will create a unique cultural celebration of life and death through the use of dance, puppetry, music and poetry.

The festival runs Oct. 26 through Nov. 11, Thursdays at 7:30 p.m., Fridays and Saturdays at 8 p.m. and Sunday matinees at 2 p.m. For information and reservations call 503-236-7253.

If you’re not into “living” theater during the Halloween season here are two movies bound to get even the coldest fish back on their feet, or fins.

First the most classic cult film ever, EVER, “The Rocky Horror Picture Show” plays at the Clinton Street Theater every Saturday at midnight. On the first, third and fifth Saturdays of the month the special and fantastic Clinton Street Cabaret enhances the picture show experience.

However, Wednesday, Oct. 31 there will be an ultra-super-new-and-improved Halloween special showing at 10 p.m. Get there early and bring plenty of rice and toast! For information call their event line at 503-238-8899 or 503-238-5588 to speak with a living creature.

The “Audition” is supposedly a really intense, Japanese, psychological horror movie. And it must be true, because both Cinema 21 and the Clinton Street Theater are showing it on consecutive weeks.

A sure sign of fear factor if ever there was.

“Audition,” follows a mild-mannered, widowed man in search of a wife into a horror-filled closet he’d thought was a seductive, boudoir of love. Rumor has it the ending is not for the faint of ventricle or the weak of stomach. “Audition” plays at Cinema 21 Oct. 26 through Nov. 1 with showings at 7 and 9:20 p.m. nightly with matinees Saturday and Sunday at 1:45 and 4:15 p.m.. Clinton Street runs “Audition” from Nov. 2-15 at 7 and 9:20 p.m.