Johnny’s List of Quirky Boston Events: 10/21/07

Hi all,

Listen up, people! This is the week in weird! 🙂

If you’re seeing this right away, *today* Sunday Oct 21, there’s a “Dead Pool” event at Flat Top Johnny’s in Kendall Square, Cambridge, at 8pm. It’s an 18+ goth event. Pay $3 and all pool tables are free and they’ll have burlesque performers serving drinks and possibly doing a routine. One Kendall Square, Building 200, Cambridge, MA.

Have you heard of Abigal Adams? The wife of former US president John Adams, she was a very involved first lady, sort of the Hillary Clinton of the day, minus the scowl. In Quincy, they’re having a re-enactment of their 1764 wedding, and it should be fantastic. Thu Oct 25. Free. Thoughtfully, they have scheduled the event at 10am on a weekday for everyone’s convenience. First Church of Weymouth & Adams National Historical Park, Quincy.

Have you ever wanted to see Elvis perform live? Well, you can’t, he’s dead. However! The “Elvis of Boston” lives on. Every Thursday at 9pm. Capone’s Prohibition Pub, Route 53, Weymouth, MA. That’s just one town south of Quincy on the south shore. 617-254-0632.

What’s better than Halloween? A renaissance faire celebration and pagan ritual run by the people who take Halloween seriously! The New Hampshire Renaissance Faire & Samhain Celebration is Oct 27-28, on Thorne Road in Kingston, NH. 603.755.9587. This is Southern NH not too far from Boston. Sat-Sun 10-5, with Samhain Celebration 5pm-7pm Saturday.

The Boston Bikes Summit is Oct 21-24, is a series of lectures, and a bike trip, all about bicycling in metro areas.

There’s an artist, Frank Warren, who’s thriving on the human desire for confession. He asks people to submit postcards with a secret (depicted as fancy artwork), chooses the best ones (sounds more like curating than art to me) and posts them on a blog called PostSecret. It’s stunning and you should take a look at and go to his book signing. That’s Tue Oct 30 at 6pm at the Brattle Theatre, 40 Brattle Street, Cambridge.

With so many evening Halloween activities, here’s a nice one for the daytime. It’s the Dorchester Open Studios, Oct 27-28, which basically is a nice excuse to walk around a local neighborhood and meet artists and see their wares. I mean, um, art.

You’ve heard me rant about Plimoth Plantation, the re-enactment museums where live actors teach you about (respectively) the 1620s. Well there are two others. One is Sturbridge Village, which focuses on the 1830s. They’re holding “Things That Go Bump in the Night”, a night of spooky storytelling and trick or treating throughout the village. 1 Old Sturbridge Village Road, Sturbridge, MA. (508) 347-3362. 5-9pm, Sat Oct 27.

The third one is Strawbery Banke Museum in Portsmouth, NH and they’re having an event called “Ghosts on the Banke” Oct 26-27. 5:30pm-8pm. Free. Come trick or treat and meet ghosts and pirates and folk from the 17th century.

Another museum event is at The Old Manse in Concord. Oct 27, 6:30-8:30pm. As best I can figure out, it’s a spooky tour where you have to solve clues and unlock an ancient mystery. The Old Manse, 269 Monument Street, Concord, MA. 978-369-3909.

Live close to Roger Williams Zoo in Rhode Island? They’re having “Spooky Sundays”. Kids in costume enter for free. Demos of silk spinning and pumpkin carving. 11am-3pm Sunday Oct 28.

Closer to Boston, the Franklin Park Zoo’s “Zoo Howl” for kids is Oct 27-28. 1 Franklin Park Road, Boston, MA. 617-541-5466. 10am. A not-so-scary Halloween celebration for kids, because we all know that kids are more important than us adults (*pout*).

The Mass Audubon Society is also getting in on the act. Oct 27th they are having “Halloween Adventures”, which is a costume event with spooky stories by a campfire and animal exhibits. Three showtimes: 6pm, 7pm, and 8pm. Broadmoor Wildlife Sanctuary, 280 Eliot Street, Natick, MA. 508-655-2296.

Halloween Town Boston is another just kids event. It’s a haunted house but a tamed down version that won’t freak out little kids so much. Also it’s not in the evening, it’s 10am-6pm. Oct 27-28.

OK. If you really want to go to a bar for Halloween, fine, here’s a listing.The Boston Young Professionals Association (i.e. singles) is having their Annual Mayness & Madness Halloween Bash at McCann’s Pub on Sat Oct 27. Buy a ticket in advance.

Much better, go see Robby Roadsteamer host a night of Halloween music, Upstairs at The Middle East, Cambridge, Oct 27, 9pm.

Much much more creative, Salem hosts a number of expensive balls for people who are really, really into costuming. The Vampires’ Masquerade Ball is Thu Oct 25. The Official Salem Witches’ Halloween Ball is Fri Oct 26. Hawthorne Hotel Ship of Ghouls Ball, Sat Oct 27. Buy tickets in advance!

Another great one, one of the mansions in Newport, RI, Belcourt Castle, is having their Halloween Ball on Oct 27.

It’s also time for the Great Pumpkin Fest at Worcester Ecotarium, one of the region’s many zoos, Sat Oct 27, 10am-9pm. Rain date Oct 28. They’ll have hay rides, pumpkin carving, planetarium shows, and a lot of events that seem appropriate mainly for little kids. Like me.

Ghost stories at the Heard House (some old timey “historic” house) in Ipswich. Oct 27, 2:30pm-5pm.

Going to Salem this weekend! We are. Email me. One of the fun things we might do is the Haunted Salem Scavenger Hunt, another of the Watson Adventures activities. Basically you get a clue sheet and run around Salem “scavenging” for the answers to their questions.

In southern New Hampshire, there is a jumble of Stonehenge-like rocks which are widely regarded to be some kind of 18th or 19th century prank. Still, it’s spooky and the closest we can get to having a stone circle in New England. Spirits Among the Ruins (A Paranomal Investigation) is Sat Oct 27, 6-9pm, some kind of Halloween spooky event. I’m not sure how seriously they’re taking it.

“Spooky Skate” is at MIT on Oct 27. Dress in costume, rent some skates, go ice skating. I wasn’t able to get definite information on this but most of these events are quasi-open to the public. Just act geeky and they’ll wave you right in.

Jamaica Plain is hosting their annual “Lantern Parade”, Sun Oct 28, 4:30pm. I haven’t been. The event seems to involve mostly walking around with lanterns while it’s not nighttime yet. 4:30pm??

This is crazy. There’s a Boston hotel that does a regular “Chocolate tasting”. I guess it wouldn’t be as classy to call it “Chocolate Pig Out”. Anyway, they’re doing it Halloween style Oct 27 with a “Chocolate BOO-fet”, 12pm-3pm. Langham Hotel, 250 Franklin Street, Boston, MA. (617) 451-1900.

There will be a lecture about pirates Sunday Oct 28 at 2pm, at the Lowell National Historical Park Visitor Center, 246 Market St. Lowell MA. Everybody loves pirates. That’s because they’re so good at murdering and stealing.

Heads up on the weird event of *next* week: “Tomes of Terror” or the “Halloween Live Audio Trilogy”. Actors portray 1930s style radio broadcasters. They stand on stage and give a rendition of a spooky Halloween radio show. So you get to see how they make the special effects and other interest behind-the-scenes radio stuff. I went last year and it was fantastic. Oct 29 – Oct 31. First Congregational Church of Somerville, 89 College Avenue, Somerville, MA. 617.669.4391. 7:30pm.

Also in the spooky tales category, an Irish harpist is going to sing and tell ancient tales of terror at the Old South Meeting House on Halloween afternoon, October 31 from 12:15pm to 1pm. Old South Meeting House, 310 Washington Street, Boston, MA 02108. (617) 482-6439.

Did you know that every Saturday, at midnight, they show the movie “Rocky Horror Picture Show” at the Loews Harvard Square theater? They do, and there’s an entire “cast”, basically a club of people who come to parody and enjoy and perform during the show. There’s a whole subculture around this. Well, they are doing a special Halloween show and it’s 10pm not midnight, I just called to ask this. Rocky Horror Picture Show. Loews Theatre, 11 Church St, Cambridge, MA.

And along similar lines, Gorefest at Improv Boston is a comedy show for Halloween with lots of blood. Fake blood. 1253 Cambridge Street, Cambridge, MA. 617-576-1253. Oct 26, 27, and 31, 8pm & 10pm.

If anyone cares, Van Halen has reunited and is playing Oct 30 at the TD Banknorth Garden. More importantly — heads up — David Sedaris is coming Nov 2nd to Boston Symphony Hall! He’s the comedian and novelist you’re always hearing on NPR. Like the Jon Stewart of book writing.

Harry Shearer, the voice of Ned Flanders and many others on The Simpsons, is starring in a comedy show in Newton. It’s “This is So Not About the Simpsons”, Oct 27-28, Jewish Theatre of New England, Newton. 617-965-5226.

Continuing events and then Halloween Special below:

— Les Miserables, Oct 23-Nov 18,

— Macbeth to Nov 11,

— Out on the Edge Festival to Nov 10,

— CSI at the Museum of Science, Boston, to Oct 31. Wicked, to Nov 11. BoSoma Dance Company, to Oct 29, Paula Poundstone, Oct 23, Nov 2,3,6, It’s not too late to see fall foliage; see previous week’s blog.

Haunted house information below. If you can’t read it, try Unfortunately, I must recommend against Horrorville in Somerville; I’ve been and it’s easily the worst haunted house I’ve ever been to.

Finally, did you know Six Flags New England is still open? It is, thru Oct 31.

That’s 78 strange things to do this week; that’s a record. See you there.


List of Haunted Houses )