Halloween places and faces were scary-fun

Area bars got a financial boost last weekend with Halloween falling on a Friday.

There were so many parties to choose from, it felt like New Year's Eve instead of Oct. 31 – and it seemed as though all of Charlotte ventured to the local haunts.

I decided to start with the biggest party of the night: CarnEVIL at Amos' Southend.

Highlights included a Taser station that resembled some sort of medieval torture device, cage dancing, live bands and some really great, gory makeup jobs.

I would have loved to stay longer to see things get really freaky, but duty called and I headed to my next stop.

Over at the Monster Mash at Cans, the Guys with Ties were packing folks in. The guys, whose nonprofit supports small local charities, tell me the party raised about $10,000 for the Bethlehem Center.

I haven't been to Cans in months and was immediately reminded why within minutes of walking in: I was knocked down the stairs by a drunk, elbowed in the face by a guy swigging his beer and jammed in the back by a staff member carrying cases of beer. No one told me this job was so dangerous. (Maybe because I was dressed as Sarah Palin? Just a theory.)

Michael Phelps and his Olympic relay team were a popular costume for men brave enough to wear Speedos in the October chill. And it wouldn't be Halloween without some girls in risque costumes dancing like strippers. Most common one I saw: The sexy cop uniform. Ladies, let's get creative next year, please?

My last stop was Forum, where again I fought my way through wall-to-wall bodies just to get inside. It must be said that on Halloween, you'd better be buzzed before you even go out just so you can tolerate the crowds. But once you're out, it's fun to see everyone dressed up and having a good time – is it just me, or are costumes the best conversation-starter?

Everyone seems to be a little friendlier on Halloween.