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Howl-O-Scream Comes to SeaWorld San Diego

February 8, 2021, 7:58 PM · SeaWorld San Diego has put a Howl-O-Scream event on its 2021 upcoming events calendar.

Howl-O-Scream is the brand name used by SeaWorld’s sibling Busch Gardens theme parks for their adult-focused Halloween events. The San Diego park typically takes a more family-friendly approach to Halloween with its Spooktacular event, which also remains on the park’s calendar for September and October of this year.

Since SWSD now has put Howl-O-Scream on its upcoming events calendar for the same time period, it seems likely that Spooktacular will run during the days as part of regular park admission, while Howl-O-Scream could run in the evenings as a hard-ticket event, as it does at Busch Gardens Tampa.

An adult-focused Halloween event - with scareactor-filled mazes and scare zones like those typically found in Tampa - would be a first for SeaWorld San Diego, but a new hard-ticket event for the park would provide extra revenue following a year in which the park remained closed for months.

SeaWorld San Diego is partially open now under state rules allowing zoos to operate. Rides at the park remain closed indefinitely. No word yet on specific dates, prices or attractions for San Diego’s Howl-O-Scream event, which likely will depend upon state reopening rules.

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Replies (6)

February 8, 2021 at 8:16 PM

San Diego's gonna need a huge marketing boost if they want to pull in guests. SoCal is considered the haunt capital of the world and they'll have to pull out all the stops to make people go there instead of Knott's Scary Farm or Fright Fest.

February 9, 2021 at 12:56 PM

One thing going for them is the distance between the San Diego/Tijuana market to Long Beach, Anaheim, Valencia and Studio City. Under the best circumstances it's a 90 minute drive to Disneyland. Universal Studios is another 30 to 45 minutes. Not that big of a deal under daytime operating conditions. But if your hoping to go to an event that runs until Midnight or 2:00am, and you don't want to pay for a hotel room, you may not get home until 4:00 or 5:00am.
Having an option for an Adult Halloween event south of Orange County will be really popular I expect. They are going to have big well established competition, but I really wish them well. The Halloween events in this area for adults is pretty limited.

February 9, 2021 at 1:10 PM

And if Dark Harbor doesn't answer the bell this year (which seems unlikely), that's one fewer event in the southern half of the LA market to draw San Diego Halloween fans north. If circumstances allow big Halloween events in California this fall (fingers crossed and upper arm exposed for a vaccination), then I think SeaWorld's timing here may turn out to be brilliant.

February 10, 2021 at 10:24 AM

This actually wouldn't be a first for the park. In the early 2000s Terrors of the Deep ran for 2 seasons. It was a hard ticket event, but wasn't successful not due to low attendance but because no one bought anything once they got there. Everyone just did the Terrors of the Deep attractions and left.

February 10, 2021 at 3:28 PM

@SeanEnero - what did the event consist of? How many mazes? Were there scare zones? Were there special Halloween shows, a parade, etc? I'm curious to know what they did the first time they tried this to compare that to what they do now. Thanks -

February 12, 2021 at 2:17 AM

Wow! This is definitely a great place to bring the kids. I'm even excited to visit here. Pool companies Austin tx

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