Now that we’ve flipped the calendar to October, brace yourself for weeks of spooky chills and thrills as Halloween lurks ahead on the 31st.

If scares are your thing, look no further than the Benton Hall Community Arts Center in North Wilkesboro, as the Wilkes Playmakers and friends embark on a full slate of spine-tingling activities.

The frightening fun starts Friday at 7 p.m., when the curtain rises on the theater troupe’s staging of “Murder in the House of Horrors,” a play written by Billy St. John. It’s a murder mystery/comedy in which the audience is invited to interact and reveal the killer.

The show is reprised at 7 p.m. on Saturday and Oct. 15-16. On Sunday and Oct. 17 there’s a Sunday matinee performances at 2 p.m.

Tickets are $12 for adults, $10 for seniors or students and $8 for ages under 5. Reserve your seat now at wilkesplaymakers.com.

The Playmakers are partnering with Great State Paranormal (GSP) to conduct “public investigations” into the depths of Benton Hall, built in 1913, formerly North Wilkesboro School and long rumored to be a hotbed of paranormal activity.

According to GSP, attendees will “experience an opening vigil where we call out to spirits to interact with us for the night, several vigils that focus on using various ghost hunting tools and techniques, access to parts of the building that are normally off limits to the public and free roam time to use our teams equipment and partake in your own investigations.”

The investigations will take place on Oct. 22, Oct. 23, Oct. 29 and Oct. 30 from 7 p.m. to 3 a.m. (an afternoon nap is mandatory for adults lasting that late into the wee morning hours).

The “Halloween Exclusive” final date will have a “limited capacity on guests to provide a more immersive experience.

Additionally, this event will extend into the early hours of Halloween, which has long been regarded as a season in which the veil between the world of the living and the departed is at its thinnest,” according to GSP.

Visit greatstateparanormal.com to buy tickets, which are $55 or $75 for the Halloween event.

As an added bonus, buy one of the GSP tickets and get a free pass to see one of the “Murder in the House of Horrors” shows—a two-for-one treat (that’s not a trick)!

The Wilkes-based GSP team does public and private investigations, home cleansings and exorcisms. Their motto is “stay safe, stay spooky.”

In between the stage show and public investigations, the Playmakers are also holding auditions for their next show, the Christmas-themed “Rudolph,” which was adapted by Krissy Browder and Wes Martin.

Those auditions at Benton Hall are Oct. 11 and Oct. 12 at 6:30 p.m.

It’s sure to be another crowd-pleasing show for the Playmakers, who are slowly returning to full stream after COVID-19 forced the troupe to hit the brakes on community theater.

Between the goings-on at Benton Hall and various haunted attractions in the county—including the annual Hillside Horror in Roaring River and the candlelight ghost tours of historic downtown Wilkesboro—it’s a good time in Wilkes County for raising those goosebumps.

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