Among Massachusetts’ many historical contributions to America is the dark legacy of the Salem Witch Trials. Despite the tragic past of this colonial town, it has grown into a spiritually enlightened hot spot for fans of the mystical and the macabre.
The massive influx of music, vendors, parades and presentations that the city experiences every Fall is referred to as Salem’s Haunted Happenings. The festivities begin October 1 and last through Halloween. Highlights include the Haunted Biz Baz Street Fair, Family Film Nights on Salem Common, costume balls, haunted houses, live music, and chilling theatrical presentations.
If you are thinking of bringing the kids, never fear – Salem offers sever family-friendly events. There’s the Little Pumpkin Duathlon and the Salem Food Truck Festival on October 1, plus the Grand Parade on October 6. As the Halloween holiday grows nearer, events and costumed street performers tend to get spookier, so take heed.
No Halloween season trip to Salem would be complete without a professional tour. For a daylight dose of history, try the AM Coffee Walk from Salem Food Tours. You’ll enjoy complimentary coffee or tea as you stroll the culinary and historical highlights of the city.
If you are more interested in the spooky side of Salem, try the Bewitched After Dark Walking Tours, the Ghosts & Legends Trolley Tour or the Haunted Harbor Tour along the coast and past Misery Island. This 75-minute cruise packs in face painting, tarot readings and tales of sea monsters and haunted pirate ships – all with a full open bar!
Salem’s Haunted Dinner Theater at historic Hawthorne Hotel and the famous Finz Restaurant is in its 14th season. This Fall they will present Ghostbusted!, a live interactive murder mystery dinner theater performance. You get to be a part of a full fledged Salem haunting while enjoying drinks and an all-you-can-eat buffet dinner.
For those who take their sorcery seriously, the Annual Psychic Fair & Witchcraft Expo runs from October 1 – November 2 and is packed with daily seances, psychic readings and social events. You can even schedule a one on one session with the professional licensed psychic of your choice. Be sure to check out the gift emporium featuring tons of paranormal merchandise.
Visit hauntedhappenings.org. for a full rundown of all the Salem Halloween festivities. No matter what level of spooky you prefer, they can help you plan the perfect Salem experience.