A Global Dance Event for Halloween… and Humanity

By Montecito Journal   |   November 1, 2022

“Thrill the World” is a global event that happens each year on the Saturday before Halloween, when thousands of enthusiastic zombies gather to perform “Thriller” – unleashing their inner zombie for fun and for charity. From Arizona to West Virginia, Austria to Taiwan, people of all ages will rise from the undead at the same moment in time, on October 29, casting away inhibitions to create a Spooktacular community experience. 

Santa Barbara is home to a particularly dedicated group of zombies organized by World Dance for Humanity, a nonprofit that turns dance into humanitarian aid. All funds raised from Thriller event sponsors, donors, and participants benefit the WD4H Rwanda Education Fund giving hope to children of genocide survivors, and also the Westside Boys & Girls Club where World Dancers provide after-school tutoring.

In the two weeks leading up to Halloween, World Dance Zombies will appear on State Street, on Stearns Wharf, the Funk Zone, Paseo Nuevo, Camino Real Marketplace, and the Zoo! They’ll go anywhere and dance ‘til they drop – for fun, for community spirit, and to help those in need. All it takes is… the will to Thrill!

Through the dance classes and Thriller, World Dance for Humanity’s founder, Janet Reineck, PhD – an anthropologist, aid worker, and dancer – has found a way to give people a fulfilling, unifying experience through dance, while making a difference in the world through grassroots humanitarian aid projects.

Thrill the World Event will take place on Saturday, October 29 at the Santa Barbara Courthouse Sunken Garden; Costume Dance Party 1pm, Thriller performance 2pm; Free and open to all ages. Visit thrilltheworld.com or worlddanceforhumanity.org/thriller2022 for more information.

The Haunting of Ortega Ridge

The winding road that leads into the Santa Ynez Mountains of Southern California’s Santa Barbara County is the site of a legendary triple murder. In the early 1900s, three nuns left the Santa Barbara Mission, intending to preach Christianity to the nearby Chumash Native Americans. Before they could reach the Chumash village, bandits ambushed, tortured, and murdered the sisters on Ortega Ridge Road.

There are many reports of drivers encountering the spirits of the three nuns, also known as Las Tres Hermanas. Their spirits appear dressed in habits, holding their hands in prayer, and walking side by side along the street. Some drivers describe them as having bright blue eyes that follow traffic as it passes. Most documented appearances happen at night, though some motorists claim to have felt ghostly presences during daylight hours.

This was originally published as part of Automoblog’s “Six Haunted Roads to Drive this October” post. Visit automoblog.net/six-haunted-roads-to-drive-this-october for more haunted roads throughout the U.S.


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