Milestone highlights include a celebration of life for Sarah Winchester, a live supernatural event, a new daily tour focused on spiritualism and paranormal, an all-new immersive Halloween experience, the annual holiday oddities market, a historical exhibit curated by estate historians, and more!
On June 30, 1923, the Winchester Mystery House officially opened its doors for public tours. In anticipation of the impending Centennial anniversary, Winchester Mystery House announced today a host of exhibitions, programs, and events—including a one-of-a-kind 100th birthday celebration in June 2023—throughout 2022–2023.
“We are so proud to have been given the opportunity to be the caretakers of Sarah Winchester’s home for the past 100 years,” said Winchester Mystery House General Manager Walter Magnuson. “The Centennial is an opportunity to not only celebrate the world-famous house, but to honor Sarah’s incredible legacy. The Winchester Mystery House has fascinated and inspired millions since doors opened to the public in 1923, and it is our mission to keep the house open for future generations to enjoy.”
On September 5, 2022, exactly 100 years since Sarah Winchester—heiress to the Winchester Repeating Arms fortune—passed away at home in her bizarrely beautiful mansion, Winchester Mystery House will welcome guests to a Celebration of Life for Sarah Winchester. Tours open at 10 a.m. and all ticketed guests will receive a commemorative cabinet card and will be encouraged to leave flowers, cards, photos, and mementos in the front gardens that day. (Note: No open flames are allowed). At 7 p.m. and 9:30 p.m. that evening, Winchester Mystery Houses invites guests to Beyond the Veil, a supernatural event hosted by world-renowned psychic medium James Van Praagh. On this hallowed occasion, 25 special guests will join James as he walks the halls of Sarah’s home and attempts to connect with Sarah and the spirits that still call the Winchester Estate home. Tickets ($250) are on-sale now at winchestermysteryhouse.com.
Following a two-year hiatus, Winchester Mystery House announced today that its popular immersive Halloween show will return this fall with an entirely new chapter, Unhinged: Nightshade’s Curse. Anticipated to be the premier Halloween haunt in the South Bay, this years’ experience invites guests into a real-life paranormal thriller. Featuring a new storyline and terrifying new scares, this suspenseful walk-through haunt features multiple routes through the darkened corridors of the infamous mansion, where guests will confront malicious spirits, and encounter terrifying scenes that will reveal the twisted tales and secrets of the haunted home. Before entering the haunt, guests will enjoy a variety of activities, including Madame Nightshades Spirit Carnival, the Spookeasy Bar, and more. Unhinged: Nightshade’s Curse will take place on 13 select evenings from Friday, September 30 through Monday, October 31, 2022. General admission tickets start at $64.99 and are available now online at winchesterunhinged.com.
In conjunction with the Centennial celebration, Winchester Mystery House has launched Walk with Spirits, an all-new intimate and interactive tour experience focused on spiritualism and paranormal. Tour guests start their journey to the past through the front doors and into a Victorian wake in the front parlor of the home. There a tour guide will guide them through the more macabre traditions of death and mourning in the 19th century. Guests will then proceed to the upper floors of the mansion where they hear about the actively practicing Spiritualists in the Santa Clara Valley during the late 1880s before experiencing the sights and sounds of a Victorian séance. Guests will then be led through a series of dark and foreboding spaces, hearing tales of the supernatural and spiritual phenomenon that Winchester Mystery House guests and employees have recorded over the years. Finally, they will arrive in the basement, the very foundation of the house. If they are lucky, or perhaps unlucky, guests may have an interaction with the mansion’s most famous residents. Tickets for the Walk with Spirits Tour are available now at winchestermysteryhouse.com.
The Winchester Mystery House Official Souvenir Book, last published over 30 years ago, has been updated in anticipation of the Centennial Celebration. The latest edition highlights Sarah Winchester’s story and her home with historic photography, recent renovations, staff stories and an overview of the influence the Winchester Mystery House has had on pop culture. The new book is available now for purchase in the Gift Shop of Winchester Mystery House and online at winchestermysteryhouse.com.
On Saturday, December 3 and Sunday, December 4, Winchester Mystery House will host the 4th Annual Menagerie Holiday Oddities Market. Featuring vendors selling strangely unique collectibles, antiques, and handmade wares—from taxidermy to dark art—the Menagerie Holiday Oddities Market is the San Francisco Bay Area’s official Oddities & Curiosities event. While on-site, guests are invited to experience self-guided tours through the ghostly corridors of the Winchester Mystery House before or after the market. Tickets for the Menagerie Holiday Oddities Market are available beginning October 31 by visiting winchestermysteryhouse.com.
The Winchester Mystery House has inspired films, books, and television shows for 100 years. Beginning June 2023, Winchester Mystery House will unveil the Centennial Exhibit that explores the Winchester Mystery House’s effect on pop culture, and will feature original marketing materials, photos, and never-before-seen artifacts curated by the Estate’s historian. Run dates and tickets will be announced at a later date.
Additional Centennial events will be announced at a later date.