Oh, to be a kid in Malibu on Halloween. Actually, scores of adults were celebrating in costumes as well Thursday night as the devil winds took the evening off to give Malibu a respite from worry and a chance to go all out for trick-or-treating.

As usual, the Malibu Colony didn’t disappoint with its Halloween shindig, hosting hundreds of guests from Malibu and beyond. The souls lucky enough to get on a guest list were treated to entertainment rivaling an amusement park. The Colony had just about everything one could want for Halloween—save the Great Pumpkin himself.

Think of the Colony celebration as an enormous witches’ cauldron, a heady brew starting with huge decorations greeting revelers at the gate. Many residents set up displays of ghoulish delights, tricks and treats. Not only were there haunted houses, there were haunted mirrors, scary animatronics, battery-powered bats, video games, old-timey arcades, interactive games, a DJ, the Ghostbusters car, a singing Freddie Mercury clone, a wall of doughnuts and, of course, outrageous decorations of spooks and ghosts. 

One family new to the neighborhood—the Carr Reed family, who lost their home in the Woolsey Fire—contributed to the festivities with their own rock concert. Violet Saturn, fronted by 17-year-old Spencer Carr Reed and his sister Lauren, only 14—rocked the street with their latest music and one old school classic, “The Monster Mash.” Spencer, a high school senior on lead guitar, Lauren, a freshman on lead vocals, and 18-year-old Luke Lindstrom, a senior, all attend Malibu High School. The Violet Saturn set attracted 250 people to the stage to hear the band’s new music, including their latest, “Young and Dumb,” set to be a part of the young band’s upcoming EP due at the beginning of 2020.  The band’s high energy was kicked up even more by Lauren’s move into the crowd and Spencer’s over-the-back guitar solo during a cover of Jimi Hendrix’s “Voodoo Child.”

“Now that we live in a trick-or-treating area, it was the perfect opportunity to perform,” said Lauren. “It’s a dream come true to be able to step out of my bedroom and onto a stage.” 

“We wanted to play here before we lived here,” Spencer added. It took the brother/sister act a month to prepare. Violet Saturn expects a repeat performance next year.

At the other end of Malibu’s stretch of Pacific Coast Highway, it also took weeks of preparation for another Malibu Halloween tradition at the home of legendary entertainer Dick Van Dyke. The beloved showman has been hosting a haunted house at his Malibu manse for decades.  But, for the for past seven years, Van Dyke and his wife Arlene have hosted “Dick and Arlene’s Halloween Spooktacular” in addition to his animatronic goblin display that scared and delighted the little ones and the adults they brought with them. The “Spooktacular” is a stage show that’s been growing every year. It started seven years ago when Arlene and friends performed a lip-sync act of “The Little Mermaid” for their neighborhood trick or treaters. Arlene said the crowd loved it, “So, Dick said, ‘We’ve got to get a stage.’” And so, the couple did. Now the “Spooktacular” includes the charming puppetry of Scott and Lisa Land, an interactive superheroes skit and, in Van Dyke fashion, plenty of dancing. 

“Every year, the show has grown,” Arlene explained, still glowing after her second performance of the night that attracted more than 100 guests. This year, Arlene and company added a glow-in-the-dark skeleton dance routine. Van Dyke—who’s about to turn 94 next month—provided voice-overs for the show. The spry nonagenarian then came out to greet guests and bust a move with the cast members. The Van Dykes appeared delighted to spread Halloween cheer and the audience seemed even more thrilled to watch.

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