Historical Cemetery Tour


22nd Annual Historical Cemetery Tour

Saturday, October 28, 2017

Cem Tour Ticket Info

Performances run from 9:00 a.m. to 2:40 p.m.

Presale tickets at www.HSLB.org or in the HSLB Gallery.

Tickets on Sale 8:30 a.m. to Noon at the event.


Special Attractions This Year

• Councilman Daryl Supernaw at the grave of his grandparents telling of their time in Long Beach — 11:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m.
• Dr. Craig Hendricks discussing Prohibition and 1920s Long Beach — 11:30 a.m. to 12:25 p.m.
Long Beach: A History Through Its Architecture author Dr. Louise Ivers tells of architect Horace Austin and the missing mausoleum he designed for his father that once stood in Municipal – 12:30 p.m. to 1:30 p.m.
Press-Telegram columnist Tim Grobaty signing his books about Long Beach including Growing up in Long Beach and Long Beach Chronicles — Noon to 1:00 p.m.
• Steve Deeble signing his historical fiction novel entitled Persistence of Vision — 9:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m.
• Former Councilwoman Gerrie Schipske signing her books including Historic Cemeteries and Rosie the Riveter — 9:00 a.m. to Noon

Parking & Logistics

There is some parking inside the cemetery, overflow parking is behind the cemetery at Willow Springs Park (enter from Orange Ave.), and there is also open street parking in the surrounding neighborhood.

The ground is uneven, so we recommend comfortable shoes. Typically the morning is chilly while the afternoon is sunny and warm, so a sweater or light coat is recommended.


Dress Rehearsals

A Little Background on the
Historical Cemetery Tour

Beginning in 1995, the HSLB has conducted an annual living history tour at the city’s two oldest cemeteries. Located on Willow Street between Orange and California and adjacent to one another, Long Beach Municipal Cemetery and Sunnyside Cemetery are “home” to more than 20,000 past residents of the area.

The tour takes place the Saturday on or before Halloween and features graveside presentations by professional and volunteer actors who relate the life and demise of the person lying in rest. Each year’s program features a number of stories – some are individuals who helped shape the city’s political past, others are ordinary people whose tales remind us that rich or poor, famed or nearly forgotten, everyone has a story to tell. Period costumes worn by all the performers further heighten the experience with an aura of authenticity. Many guests get so involved in the presentation that questions like “What was it like to live here in 1920?” are often asked of the performers.

The tour is appropriate for families and all ages. There is nothing scary about the vignettes or the location.

Japanese ladyTickets are sold online and at the gate from 8:30 a.m. until noon just inside the main gateway on Willow Street or at the Orange Avenue entrance. The tour takes approximately two hours to complete, and the last presentations are between 2:00 p.m. and 2:30 p.m.

A big thank you to the Long Beach Playhouse and Artistic Director Denis McCourt for his assistance providing costume coordination for the Historical Cemetery Tour. Former Long Beach mayor Bob Foster, above right, has been a volunteer actor for several past tours. Among the stories he has told, a favorite was Kid Mexico, a.k.a. the Bingo Baron of Signal Hill.

Recent Coverage

October 31, 2016 – LBPost.com: Long Beach Historical Society Cemetery Tours Bring the Dead to Life


Hollywood Gothique‘s 2014 Halloween Haunt Award Nominees:

⌖ Best Play in a Non-Theatrical Setting: HSLB’s 19th Annual Historical Cemetery Tour

⌖ Best Short Play or Vignette: Fighting Injustice with Tacos from HSLB’s Historical Cemetery Tour

⌖ Best Non-Haunt Halloween Event: HSLB’s 19th Annual Historical Cemetery Tour

Promos for the 2017 Historical Cemetery Tour

Video from the 2015 Historical Cemetery Tour

2014 Historical Cemetery Tour Video Media

Video from the 2013 Historical Cemetery Tour
Video from the 2012 Historical Cemetery Tour
Video from the 2011 Historical Cemetery Tour

A 2002 Lakewood CityTV Promo for the Historical Cemetery Tour