The Village Halloween Parade is officially back this year thanks to a major donation. The beloved event was scheduled to return after a pandemic-related hiatus, but a lack of funds threatened to cancel the 2021 parade, according to organizers. The parade set a fundraising goal of $150,000 by October 5, and with the help of 183 donors who contributed over $11,000 and Jason Feldman and his wife Missy who made up the difference, the spooky show will go on.
Credit: Max Guliani for Hudson River Park
What better way to celebrate fall, relieve some 2020 related-stress, and benefit the environment than smashing old pumpkins into compost. Hudson River Park’s third-annual “smash it, don’t trash it” Pumpkin Smash event returns next month, which invites New Yorkers to take a bat to post-Halloween gourds to dispose of them in an eco-friendly way.
BIG Architects designing their masterpiece; Photo by Daniel Cole for Center for Architecture
Every year, New York City-based architecture firms face off in a spirited pumpkin carving competition in quest of the PritzkerPumpkin prize. This year, because of the coronavirus pandemic and restrictions on gatherings, Pumpkitecture will take place virtually. And the contest won’t be limited to just architects and designers, but anyone with an “eerie eye for design” can enter.
St. Paul’s Chapel via Flickr cc
Tis the season to voluntarily spook yourself! But if haunted houses and tourist-friendly ghost tours are not your thing, New York’s bustling burrows are home to a slew of the more naturally born spirits. You’ll find Dracula’s extended family on 23rd Street, a host of oracles on Orchard Street, and the site of the cruel crime that led to the nation’s first recorded murder trial on Spring Street. If you’re searching for a necropolis in the metropolis, here are ten of the best sites in New York to spot specters.
Photo of pumpkin-headed scarecrows courtesy of NYBG
Although it’s already been a scary year, there are still ways to have some old-school spooky fun in New York City this Halloween. Sadly, popular events like the Village Halloween Parade and the Tompkins Square Dog Halloween Parade have been canceled and traditional trick-or-treating has been deemed a high-risk activity because of the coronavirus pandemic. But there are a number of fall-friendly, socially distanced events still taking place across the city, like a Día de Los Muertos celebration at Green-Wood Cemetery, virtual ghost story readings from the Merchant’s House Museum (considered Manhattan’s most haunted house), and eerie hayrides and pumpkin picking at the Queens County Farm Museum.
Though the Village Halloween Parade was just a small neighborhood gathering in 1973, it has taken place and grown every year since then except after Hurricane Sandy in 2012. This year, however, the beloved event is being cancelled for the second time ever due to COVID-19. Jeanne Fleming, who has been the director of the parade since 1985, broke the news yesterday to the Post, but promised New Yorkers a special “trick” in its place, though she’s remaining mum on those details for now.
Some were spooky, others political, all were adorable. The 29th annual Tompkins Square Park Halloween Dog Parade took place last Sunday, bringing together hundreds of New Yorkers and their furry friends from all over. While the parade is no longer really a parade nor held at Tompkins Square Park, the event remains one of the year’s best. Photographers James and Karla Murray witnessed first hand the canine costumes and shared with 6sqft photos of the cutest and most creative choices, including the ultimate winners: two Yorkshire terries as Snoopy and the Red Baron.
The Halloween scarescape on West 69th Street in Manhattan. Photo © 6sqft
October 31 brings New Yorkers of all sizes out of their crypts and crannies in search of treats and fun. This year, long-running favorite neighborhoods rise to the occasion once again, with a few recent additions. Trick-or-treating in the big city has its advantages: Apartment buildings can be like hitting the jackpot and friendly neighbors, stores, businesses and neighborhood events keep the little tricksters busy. Technology helps keep things safe and fun: Local-social site Nextdoor‘s annual trick-or-treat map is back; neighbors can add themselves to if they’re handing out candy. Like so many other topics, New Yorkers love to argue over which neighborhoods offer the best bounty. Below are a few picks for the best treats.
A 19th-century townhouse in Brooklyn has undergone a creepy and kooky makeover just in time for Halloween. Travel company Booking.com transformed the Clinton Hill home at 272 Lafayette Avenue into a real-life replica of The Addams Family Mansion from the hit 1960s comedy sitcom. For just over $100 per night, guests can spend Halloween playing with Wednesday’s beheaded dolls, calling Lurch on his “you rang” bell, and getting scared by Thing.
Image courtesy of the Central Park Conservancy.
Some say Halloween is New York City’s favorite holiday. And while those who indulge in its fright-fraught fun may celebrate in different ways, there’s a scare out there for everyone. We’re all under the spell of the fabulous Village Halloween Parade, from its history to its most avid participants; if that doesn’t satisfy your craving for fright-week fun, peruse our list of Halloween happenings from family-friendly to extra freaky.