5 things to do this weekend to celebrate Halloween

The month is coming to a close which means it’s time to celebrate Halloween. I fixed my problem from last week with a new Halloween candle set, and I also have my candy ready for this weekend (for me, not the children). Also on my to-do list this week is watching Disney-Pixar’s film “Coco” — a film centered around the day of the dead — also coming up on Nov. 2. As a part of this weekend’s selection of events, there is altar making for Dia de los Muertos, a Halloween celebration at the zoo, a haunted walking tour and more happenings to celebrate Allhallows Eve.

'The Salem Witch Trials: Reckoning and Reclaiming'

Through March 20

One of the things that Salem is known for is for the Salem Witch Trials. Through this exhibit at the Peabody Essex Museum, you will learn more about the turmoil caused by accusations of witchcraft, the people that defended the accused, and you’ll also have the chance to explore more from artists who have lineage connecting to the people involved in the trials. You’ll also find photographs of people who share what it means to be a modern-day witch. [Contributor Pamela Reynolds writes more on the exhibit here.]

Frances F. Denny's portraits: "Keavy (Brooklyn, NY)" (left) and "Leonore (Montpelier, VT)" (right). (Courtesy of the artist and ClampArt, New York, NY)
Frances F. Denny's portraits: "Keavy (Brooklyn, NY)" (left) and "Leonore (Montpelier, VT)" (right). (Courtesy of the artist and ClampArt, New York, NY)

Candlelight Halloween: A Haunted Evening of Classical Compositions

Thursday, Oct. 28

There will be candlelight adorning the stage at the Temple Ohabei Shalom in Boston for an intimate (and spooky) performance of classical Halloween jams. The Listeso String Quartet will be playing a few favorites of mine including “Thriller” by Michael Jackson and “This Is Halloween” composed by Danny Elfman for the movie “The Nightmare Before Christmas” as well as the well-known theme song “The Addams Family (Theme)” by Vic Mizzy — all while the candlelight illuminates the space.

Zoo Howl

Saturday, Oct. 30-Sunday, Oct. 31

The Franklin Park Zoo is having a Zoo Howl — a chance for kids to trick or treat in costumes as they walk around the animals at the zoo. There will be a trick-or-treat trail and a scavenger hunt with prizes as well as education stations where you can learn more about animal habitats. Costumes are encouraged — there will even be a costume contest! The event will be held rain or shine.

Altares de Dia de los Muertos

Sunday, Oct. 31

The New Art Center is hosting “Altares de Dia de los Muertos” (which translates to “altars of the day of the dead''), in collaboration with Mexican musician Zaira Meneses, who will be getting the audience ready to celebrate the Day of the Dead with a jam-packed schedule. The program includes paper cut and piñata making and after the arts and crafts, you’ll get right into a concert with sounds of Son Jarocho, authentic music from Veracruz, Mexico. Creative and traditional wear is encouraged.

Boston by Foot: Beacon Hill with a Boo!

Sunday, Oct. 31

Boston by Foot takes attendees on a journey through Beacon Hill on Allhallows Eve. You’ll learn about the underlying history of the quaint neighborhood as you stroll past the houses decorated for Halloween and the dark events that occurred inside some of these homes years ago, including the home of Dr. George Parkman - a man who was dismembered. What could be more frightening than learning about the serial killers, ghosts and murders that happened on Beacon Hill?

Magdiela Matta Arts Fellow
Magdiela Matta was the arts and culture reporting fellow for WBUR in 2021.



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