There’s good reason that locals and guests alike take Halloween seriously in Nevada City. The town is one of California’s most haunted, a fact confirmed by multiple paranormal scientists, I’m sure. One such haunted location, the National Hotel, was the centerpiece of an episode of the Travel Channel’s Ghost Adventures, while other locations have been featured in local news.
So rather than flee from phantoms and get peeved over poltergeists, we choose to celebrate our honored, otherworldly guests — they get to return to the mortal plane just one day a year, you know.
If you’re looking to drop into town for a spell, you might consider going to Fright Night at the Miner’s Foundry, which is haunted by the ghosts of long-dead gold rush prospectors who return for a night of entertainment. With food, drink, and live music, Fright Night presents a fun evening for costumed revelers of all types. The party kicks off on October 29. Head over to minersfoundry.org for tickets and more information.
If dancing the night away sounds like too much work for your skeleton, you may want to venture forth on one of Nevada City’s ghost tours. These exhaustively researched, historically accurate guided expeditions commence every Friday, Saturday, and Sunday night in October.
For a Halloween experience that spans cultures, check out the Nevada County Altar Show. Taking inspiration from El Dia de Los Muertos, the Altar Show invites artists to create personalized altars honoring departed loved ones. The altars provide a sense of wholeness, healing, and renewal for artists and visitors alike. The show begins on October 29 and runs through November 6.
Of course, we can’t forget about Nevada City Retreat’s own ghosts, like the one who hordes all the ping pong balls underneath the deck. Some guests seem to have drifted in only to never leave.* We can’t say we blame them — from the wood stove in Papa Bear’s Lodge, to the private deck at Mama Bear’s Cabin, to the hot tubs at every location, Nevada City Retreats makes for a pretty comfortable place to stay.
*As far as we know, no ghosts are left haunting the halls of Nevada City Retreats. But if you see or hear anything suspicious, please let us know.