If fright fests aren't your thing, try something a little different this Halloween. Join the fine folks at Bistro 185 for a special five-course vintage wine dinner. Menu items include festive favorites like house-made pumpkin and mascarpone ravoli, pan-seared scallops with caramel-orange sauce, bacon-and-pear Brussel Sprouts and apple-pear marzipan tarts with brown-sugar whipped cream. The meal is accompanied by a flight of red and white wines, expertly paired with each dish to really make your taste buds pop. The cost is $75 per person, plus tax and tip. Reservations are required. Call 216-481-9635 for more information.
This Halloween, experience one of the most epic zombie takeovers ever. The folks at Punderson Manor Lodge and Conference Center are hosting a glow-in-the-dark paintball zombie massacre on their sprawling Newbury disc-golf course. Each participant will be armed with a high powered paintball gun and must run, jump, and roll their way through the thrilling 6,200-yard course without being eliminated by real-life zombie chasers. Participation costs $159 and includes a one-night stay at the Punderson Manor, plus all of your paintball gear. Space is limited, so if you want to partake in this year's zombie festivities do make sure you call 440-564-9144 in advance.
Halloween Photo Safari
Today is the final day to participate in the 2013 Cleveland Metroparks Zoo Photo Safari contest. Spend Halloween day taking photos of frightfully scary animals — or merely your favorite zoo creatures — and you could win a whole slew of fabulous prizes, including family zoo memberships, Metroparks golf passes and behind-the-scenes zoo tours. Photos will be judged in six categories: birds; mammals; plants and insects; reptiles, amphibians and fish; family and friends; and dinosaurs. You can submit your photos online at clemetzoo.com and check out the other competing submissions. The contest is open to all amateur photographers, and the only cost is zoo admission.
Beachland Halloween VII: The Massacre-Aid Ball
This is always a fun one. Now in its seventh year, the Beachland Halloween concert features local acts playing sets of covers. This year promises to be memorable. You've got garage rock vets the Hot Rails taking on Led Zeppelin, indie folk rockers Oldboy playing a set of R.E.M. covers and the moody alt-rockers Commonwealth performing a set of the National's tunes. Other acts getting the tribute treatment include the Cramps, Murder City Devils, Black Sabbath, Gogol Bordello, Queen, ZZ Top and the White Stripes. Prizes will be given out for the best costumes. The festivities start at 8 p.m. and the cost is $5.
Scary Sweet Jams
For plenty of bars and clubs in town, Halloween is a good time to get a cover band or DJ to play tunes that cater to the lowest common denominator. Not Mahall's. The Lakewood club has booked a sonically adventurous line-up that includes Cleveland's post-punk heroes Pleasure Leftists, a band whose Joy Division/New Order/Bauhaus-like new single "Elephant Men" has gotten rave reviews, and Wolf Eyes, a veteran noise group that sounds as menacing as ever on its latest album, No Answer: Lower Floors. Scary stuff. The cost is $12 and the tunes start at 9 p.m. at Mahall's 20 Lanes.