Grownups get in the Halloween Spirit in Myrtle Beach

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Halloween is all about the kids, with complimentary candy and cute costumes around every corner for the occasion. But there's also room for the more mature set, or at least adults who still act and feel like kids themselves, to enjoy the spooky holiday.

And since Myrtle Beach is already a bit of a playground for the young and the young at heart, it only makes sense that Halloween is a major play date for all ages. For those who enjoy dressing up and cutting loose for the festive affair, we have plenty of places to celebrate Halloween with kindred spirits, along with some adult spirits. Here are five parties you don't want to miss in Myrtle Beach this Halloween:

* Boardwalk Fright Nights: Downtown Myrtle Beach is transformed into one spooky place during the month of October, when Broadway Fright Nights bring chill-seekers to the  oceanfront district in droves. Zombies and other costumed creatures roam the downtown area while scary music plays and smog machines provide a mood-setting mist to the  scene. Special discounts are offered at Ripley's Haunted Adventures, the Nightmare Haunted House and other attractions on Friday and Saturday nights from Oct. 3 to Nov. 1  with special parties with live music scheduled for Oct. 18, Oct. 25 and Oct. 31.

* Broadway at the Beach: The annual “Nightmare in the Square” party is one of the highlights of the local social calendar. Patrons go all out to don creative costumes and  compete for cash and prizes for the best get-up. Guests dress up in outfits ranging from funny to down-right scary and parade around from bar to bar at Celebrity Square,  where the clubs hold their own special Halloween events. But the main event is outside on the square, where a live DJ takes the stage to play dance music and emcee the  costume contest. The party gets started at 7 p.m. and runs well past midnight.

* Conway Ghost Tours: Take a spooky stroll through the historic downtown district of Conway and encounter some of the scary stories from this small Southern city's scary  past. See Civil War-era homes that are said to be haunted by deceased residents, such as the Beaty House, where five of the Beaty children died early deaths and are  believed to appear playing in the house and the yard. Professional storytellers serve as guides for the 30-minute tours, which depart from downtown at the Theater of the  Republic. Tours will be held Oct. 23-25 this year beginning at 7 p.m.

* Murrells Inlet Marshwalk: The fishing village of Murrells Inlet already has that creepy, swampy look made famous in virtually every episode of “Scooby Doo,” and the old pirate  hideout already has some ghost stories to its credit. In fact, Drunken Jack's Island, named for the pirate who was stranded on it with nothing but hijacked bottles of rum, is  visible from the wooden waterfront walkway. Throw in a few thousand revelers dressed in their Halloween best and the usual haunts of seafood restaurants and oyster bars  and you've got a great party. A costume party is among the many activities set to begin at 7 p.m. A kids' event is held earlier in the evening before the Marshwalk is turned  over to adults behaving like kids.

* Terror Under the Bridge: You don't have to be a kid to enjoy a good haunted house, and this 3,000 square foot warehouse, which serves as the X Sports Complex the rest of  the year, will put a good scare visitors of all ages. Previously held in Conway, this troop sought larger quarters this year to put on an even bigger and better show. The house  will operate for one week only, Oct. 24-Nov. 1, from 7 to 11 p.m.

(Posted: 9/24/14)

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