October: Galveston’s Ghostly History to Draw Thrill Seekers


turn-key-resorts-galveston-tx

The season for thrills and chills is quickly approaching and Galveston Island’s ghostly history makes it one of the top destinations in the country for “haunted” travel. From a 106-year-old “haunted” hotel to Galveston’s storied harbor, cemeteries and Victorian mansions, this October the island will be bustling with visitors seeking to be spooked by numerous ghost stories that stem from the country’s deadliest natural disaster and other tragedies.

Galveston has many sites that are considered haunted, including an 1867 building that served as a morgue after the 1900 Storm – still the deadliest storm in U.S. history having killed an estimated 8,000 Galveston residents. The building now houses Haunted Mayfield Manor – a year-round haunted house attraction in downtown Galveston. The haunted house embraces the spooky history of the building’s past while providing guests with a psychologically thrilling experience.

Also embracing its reported haunting is the island’s 106-year-old Hotel Galvez, which has been featured on the Travel Channel’s Ghost Stories and on the Discovery Channel’s Ghost Lab for its paranormal significance. The hotel, which offers special ghost tours during October, is said to be haunted by a “Ghost Bride” who reportedly has been seen in room 501 and in the hotel’s west turret. Legend has it that the bride hung herself in the west turret during the mid-1900s after hearing reports that her fiancé had died at sea. Tragically, her fiancé eventually returned to the hotel looking forward to a marriage that would never be.

The Galveston Historical Foundation, which manages many of the island’s well-preserved historical sites and Victorian mansions, also offers ghost tours throughout October. Many of the island’s historic places have ghost stories attached to them as Galveston has been home to epidemics of disease, war, fires, storms and many merciless pirates, including the infamous Jean Laffite whose lavish and lawless den of thieves was the island’s first European settlement.

“Many, many people have lived and died by these waters, and perhaps some of the dead still reside here,” said Dwayne Jones, executive director of the Galveston Historical Foundation. “We invite our guests to listen to the stories and decide for themselves. But you don’t have to believe in ghosts to know that the dead are a presence on this island.”

Galveston is also home to the nationally recognized paranormal expert Dash Beardsley, who offers ghost tours in the island’s cemeteries, downtown district and other parts of the island year round. Visit www.ghosttoursofgalvestonisland.com for information on Dash Beardsley tours.

extreme-watersports-galveston-tx

Ghostly Galveston Attractions 2017
Graveyard Tour
Date: Every Friday and Saturday in October
Time: 9 p.m. Fridays; 9 p.m. and 10:30 p.m. Saturdays
Price: $15
Location: 4001 Ave K
Info: Take a walking tour of Galveston’s oldest cemeteries. Learn about the people buried there as you stand over their graves.  Murder, suicide, and ghostly tales are told.  See where some of Galveston’s most famous citizens are laid to rest!  For more information, visit www.galvestonhistorictour.com.

Dash Beardsley’s Ghost Tours of Galveston
Date: Fridays/Saturdays Year-round
Time: Varies
Price $20 adults/ $15 children 10 years old and younger (toddlers free)
Location: Varies
Info: Galveston Paranormal Expert Dash Beardsley offers the island’s most popular haunted tours, including “Original Ghost Tour on The Strand,” “Restless Spirits Tour,” Secret Society Cemetery Tour,” and the “Jack The Ripper Mystery Island Tour.” For details, visit www.ghosttoursofgalvestonisland.com

Fall Sunset Cruise Onboard the Seagull II
Date: October 13-14, 27-28
Time: 5:15 p.m.
Price: $20 adults, $17 youth, Free for 5 and under
Location: Pier 22 (22nd Street and Harborside Drive)
Info: The narrated exploration of spooky corners and tragic sites in and around Galveston’s storied harbor takes place aboard the 50-foot passenger boat. www.galvestonhistory.org

Full Moon Tour of the 1892 Bishop’s Palace
Date: October 5 and November 4
Time: 8 p.m.
Price: $30
Location: 1402 Broadway Avenue
Info: Experience Bishop’s Palace in a whole new light!

This special tour lets visitors explore the National Historic Landmark and see how this architectural gem takes on a completely different look in the moonlight. www.galvestonhistory.org

kitchen-chick_generic_728x90

Gallery Psychic Reading at the 1892 Bishop’s Palace
Date: October 28
Time: 9 p.m.
Price: $150
Location: 1402 Broadway Avenue
Info: Join tour guide Dakota Lawrence as he leads an intimate gathering of guests through a very special group reading. This gifted clairvoyant medium has been guiding people on matters from lost loved ones and life questions to missing person cases. www.galvestonhistory.org

Ghostly Gardens
Date: October 29
Time: 2-4 p.m.
Price: Free
Location: Moody Gardens, One Hope Boulevard
Info: Spooky fun will include free trick-or-treating at various locations throughout the complex, creepy crafts, face-painting and a costume contest for guests in the Garden Lobby with prizes for the best costume. Families with a member in a Halloween costume will receive a discount and pay just $5 per attraction per person to Moody Gardens. For more information, visit www.moodygardens.org.

Ghost Tours at the 1859 Ashton Villa
Date: October 26-27, and 31
Time: 8:15 p.m.
Price: $30
Location: 2328 Broadway Avenue
Info: Join your guide for an unprecedented tour of the home as you hear about the early days of Galveston’s formation and exceptional life, and possible after-life, of the home’s Miss Bettie Brown. www.galvestonhistory.org

Halloween Movie Nights at the Galveston Island Historic Pleasure Pier
Date: October 7, 14, 21 and 28
Time: Varies
Price: Varies
Location: Pleasure Pier (25th Street and Seawall Boulevard)
Info: On Saturday nights in October, join in for some spooky fun with the showing of Halloween-themed films at Stage 25.  On October 28 bring the kids out for a ghostly good time with trick or treating, movies and family-friendly activities www.pleasurepier.com

Haunted Mayfield Manor 
Date: Year round
Time: Varies
Price: $10
Location: 2313 Harborside Drive
Info: www.hauntedmayfieldmanor.com

OCEAN STAR ad_728x90

Haunted Zombie Tour Aboard the USS Cavalla Submarine
Date: October 28-29
Time: 6:30-9:30 p.m.
Price: $6 per vehicle; $5 age 5 and older (children under 12 must be accompanied by adult)
Location: 100 Seawolf Park Boulevard, Galveston, TX 77551
Info: Head to Seawolf Park this October for a haunted tour of the zombie-infested USS Cavalla submarine. Guests will have to brave through the apocalyptic smoke and flashing emergency dive lights as zombies roam the haunted submarine. Call (409) 770-3196 or visit www.americanunderseawarfarecenter.com.

Hotel Galvez Audio Ghost Tours
Date: Year-round
Time: N/A
Price: Free
Location: Hotel Galvez, 2024 Seawall Boulevard
Info: Hotel Galvez offers a free audio tour app for smart phones. Guests and the public can enjoy 25-minute history tours and 20-minute ghost tours year-round.

Hotel Galvez Ghost Tour and Dinner
Date: Tuesdays-Fridays throughout October
Time: 6 p.m.
Price: $45 per person plus tax and gratuity (includes three-course dinner)
Location: Hotel Galvez, 2024 Seawall Boulevard
Info: In celebration of “ghost season,” Hotel Galvez & Spa hosts weekly ghost tour-dinners during the month of October. The ghost tour-dinner is available on Tuesdays, Wednesdays, and Thursdays as well as Fridays (overnight package only). During the tour, staff guides participants through the ghostly past of the hotel, which is then followed by dinner in the Galvez Bar & Grill. The one-hour public ghost tour is only available as part of the dinner package.

Friday night tour dinner packages are available exclusively as part of an overnight ghost package.Advance reservations are required. www.hotelgalvez.com

Lantern Light Tours of the 1892 Bishop’s Palace 
Date: October 27-28
Time: Varies
Price: $30
Location: 1402 Broadway Avenue
Info: With lantern in hand, explore the nooks and crannies of Galveston’s beloved Bishop’s Palace. Learn about the history of the Gresham family and the house itself with a rare guided tour of the 1892 masterpiece. www.galvestonhistory.org

Living Dead Tour 
Date: Every Friday and Saturday in October
Time:  8 p.m. Fridays; 6:30 p.m. and 8 p.m. Saturdays
Price: $15
Location: 2328 Broadway Avenue
Info: Explore Galveston’s haunted history with the only driving ghost tour on the island.  Drive by historic places and hear the stories of the people who lived and died there.  Haunts on the tour include Ashton Villa, Menard House, Williams House, Bishop’s Palace and more!  For more information, visit www.galvestonhistorictour.com.

kitchen-chick_generic_728x90

Menard House Trick or Treating
Date: October 31
Time: 5-7 p.m.
Price: Free
Location: 1605 33rd Street
Info: Galveston’s oldest residence opens its doors for one night of ghostly fun. Bring your kids by for treats (and a few surprises) to the 1838 Michele B. Menard house, located at 1605 33rd
Street.

Free for all, be sure to bring your ghost hunting equipment! www.galvestonhistory.org

Movie Nite on The Strand: The Addams Family
Date: Oct. 7
Time: Dusk
Price: Free
Location: Saengerfest Park, 2302 Strand
Info: Free outdoor showing of the film “The Addams Family” in which con artists plan to swindle an odd family using an accomplice who claims to be their long lost uncle. For more information, visit www.galveston.com.

About Galveston Island
Galveston Island is a historic beach town located on the Gulf of Mexico just 50 miles from Houston. The island is best known as a vacation destination, offering 32 miles of beaches, a variety of family attractions, Texas’ premier cruise port and one of the largest and well-preserved concentrations of Victorian architecture in the country, including several National Historic Landmarks. Galveston Island is home to popular amusements such as, Moody Gardens and Schlitterbahn Galveston Island Waterpark, as well as a variety of museums and recreational activities from surfing to birding. For more information on Galveston Island visit www.galveston.com or call 1-888-GAL-ISLE.

Galveston Art League

About