Johnny’s List of Quirky Boston Events: 10/26/06

Two major events are happening this week that every should see!

There are only two events per year that I absolutely insist that people check out. One of them is Davis Farmland with their cool corn field maze,

The other is happening next Thursday. It’s the Day of the Dead Festival @ Forest Hills Cemetery. This is a totally unique cultural event where you get to see the native american festival from Central America. They have a fire with a ring of dancers and singers. You can write a note to a lost loved one and they will put it in the fire for you, to send up to them. The public can even join in the dancing, it is phenomenal. Please go, and say hi to me there. Nov 2. 95 Forest Hills Avenue, Boston. 4:30-6:30pm.Rain or shine.

The other big event I recommend this week highly is a performance of The Housejacks. Wes Carroll is an MIT alumnus who is part of a 5-person a capella group. This is NOT like college-level a capella. These guys do imitation guitars, trombones, and organs that sound so real you start looking around for a guy in the corner playing. I went last year to a show at Johnny D’s and it was awesome oppossum. Anyway this performance is Nov 1st at Club Passim at 47 Palmer Street in Cambridge. See

Please tell your friends about this mailing list / blog. Now briefly let’s discuss some non-Halloween stuff.

There’ll be a Celtic Fiddle “Festival”, which is realy just a performance, Oct 28th at Somerville Theatre in Somerville.

And Comics Come Home is a standup comedy event to benefit charity. Oct 28, 7:30pm. Denis Leary and others. At BU’s Agganis Arena.

Obviously being pushed out of the warm summer weather by competing open studios, the Roxbury Open Studios is Oct 28-29. Roxbury, MA. Local arts exhibition. 11-6.

And if that’s not scary enough, how about Altar Boyz, Oct 31-Nov 5, at the Colonial Theatre in Boston. Award-winning spoof about a group like the Backstreet Boys. Speaking of which, 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee continues at the Wilbur Theatre through 12/31. And Twelve Angry Men is coming up at The Colonial Theatre Nov 7-19. It stars that guy from Cheers, and the movie is spectacular so I assume the show is too.

Also the Boston Jewish Film Festival is Nov 1-12., Brookline, MA. Coolidge Corner Theatre and the Museum of Fine Arts.

Now — What to do for Halloween weekend?

Well, there are two Costume Balls, 10/27, 10/28 at the Hawthorne Hotel in Salem, see
for the Friday “Official Witches’ Ball” and the regular Salem one at

To the south, in Newport RI, and many others have parties. Basically every bar in Boston, too, but they’ll be lame.

To the north, try the New Hampshire Renaissance Faire & Samhain Celebration, Oct 28-29, Thorne Road, Kingston, NH. 603.755.9587. $8. Southern NH not too far from Boston. Sat-Sun 10-5, with Samhain Celebration 5pm-7pm Saturday.

There is a Spooky Skate @ MIT, Oct 27, 9pm-12am. Arts & crafts, photo contest, skating, free food, cookie decorating.

The MIT Pumpkin Drop is Oct 28, Next to EC on The Dot. 11:59pm. I will let you guess what the event is. Hint: it involves dropping, and pumpkins. 🙂

Also check out Things That Go Bump in the Night @ Sturbridge Village. Can I be candid with you? The event itself is probably not much, but Stubridge Village itself is wonderful and this would be a great excuse to check it out. 1 Old Sturbridge Village Road. Sturbridge, MA. (508) 347-3362.

For a theatrical performance, see the Halloween Live Audio Trilogy. A reproduction of old radio shows done live on stage. First Congregational Church of Somerville, 89 College Avenue. Somerville, MA. 617.669.4391. 7:30pm Oct 30 & 31.

Also the Harvard Museum of Natural History Halloween Family Festival is happening, also more of a kids thing, Oct 31,, 26 Oxford St, Cambridge, MA. (617) 495-3045. 4-8pm. Halloween festival including scavenger hunt, live animal presentation, for kids.

On Halloween itself, 10/31, the public is invited to join the Wiccan Samhain Magick Circle Ceremony. Salem, MA. 978-745-8668. Open to the public. Also see incredibly expensive Wiccan events such as costume ball & séance at

See more stuff happening in Salem at Salem Halloween Happenings.

Continuing events, the Legacy of the Hanging Judge, a theatre re-enactment of the Salem Witch Trials at The House of the Seven Gables in Salem, highly recommended.

If you like guided tours, try the Ghosts and Gravestones Tour (in Boston),, or the Salem Spirits Trolley Tour (in Salem),

Magic Lounge continues at the Hong Kong Comedy Studio on Tuesdays, I think this may simply run indefinitely. Cambridge.

Wachusett Mountain Applefest continues. I don’t recommend the event per se, but it’s great to visit the next door Wachusett Mountain Reservation and go for a hike. Oct 21-29. Princeton, MA. Rt 2W to Rt 140 S. Skyline ride for fall foliage. Weekends. Other festivals, see site.

If you’re looking for something non-scary for kids, check out Davis Farmland which does a very mellow Halloween theme for their huge corn field maze. Or the Franklin Park Zoo’s “Zoo Howl” for kids, Oct 28-29, 1 Franklin Park Road, Boston, MA. 617-541-5466. $10. 10am+. A not-so-scary Halloween celebration for kids.

Also a kids event, Halloween Town Boston,, at the Seaport World Trade Center, 200 Seaport Boulevard, Boston, MA. Benefits the Boston Medical Center. Kids event. 10-6

And now, the haunted house update!

Almost all the haunted houses will finally be open this weekend. A few new ones open next weekend, too.

Livingston Street Terror. Livingston St, Tewksbury, MA. MY RATING: A+. Fri-Sat 7-10, Sun 7-9. Weekends Oct 6-29. Rt 93N to exit 42, into Tewksbury. One of the smaller ones. See website for coupon.

Barrett’s Haunted Mansion. 1235 Bedford St, Abington, MA. 781-871-4573. MY RATING: A. Rt 3S to Rt 18S. 7-10:30pm daily except 1-5,10,11,12,31. A BIG one worth seeing.

Asylum of Horror (haunted house). Anawan St. Fall River, MA. 508.324.7709. MY RATING: A-. Sep 29,30, Oct 1,6,7,8,9,13,14,15,19,20,21,22,26-31, 7pm+ . See website for coupons. See the Factory of Terror also in Fall River while you’re there.

Castle of the Damned at Hammond Castle. MY RATING: B. Fri & Sat Oct 13-28. 7-10:45pm. 10:45 is last ticket. 80 Hesperus Ave, Gloucester, MA. 978-283-2080. It’s very theatrical and interesting, the one that’s most like a theatre production, but… just not that scary. Good one to take kids too. Unfortunately it’s quite a ride away on the North Shore from Boston.

Berwick’s House of Horrors (Berwick’s Boys Foundation). UNRATED. 335 West Street, West Bridgewater, MA. Oct 14,15,20,21,22,27,28,29, 6:30pm-10pm except close 9pm Sunday. Rt 24S to ex 16B, Rt 106W. Right at lights after Charlie Horse onto Manley.

Haunted Acres. Epping, NH. (603)679-9850. Another theme park style haunted house with several attractions. I haven’t been but would like to go. The Skeleton Saloon House, The 3-D Nuclear Accident House, The 1/4 Mile Nightmare Walk through the woods. Oct 26-31, 5:30pm-10pm, but to 11pm on Fri & Sat. Rain or shine.

Haunted Mansion @ Victorian Park. Salem, NH. 603-898-1803. UNRATED. Rt 93N to ex 3, Rt 111E to Rt 28S. Fri-Sun Oct 6-22 + 25-31 from 6:30pm. See website for coupon.

Haunted Ghost Town @ Marshfield Fairgrounds. Oct 27-28. Marshfield MA. Route 3A at South River St. 6-10pm.

Jaycees Haunted House @ Walpole Mall. Orpheum Theatre, 1 School St. Foxboro, MA. 508-543-0712. UNRATED. Fri-Sun Oct 6-30 + Oct 31. FS 7-11, Sun 7-10. Rt 95S to exit 10. Right off exit. 1/4 mile on rt.

Factory of Terror (haunted house). Fall River, MA. MY RATING: B-. Rt 195E to exit 5. Left off exit. Behind Dunkin Donuts. 6:30-11pm, Oct 13-16,20-23,25-31. Extensive 35-room haunted house. See website for coupons. A BIG one worth seeing. See the Asylum of Horror in Fall River while you’re there.

Fortress of Nightmares @ Fort Adams, Oct 28-31. Fort Adams State Park, 1 Lincoln Drive, Newport, MA. 401-841-0707. 6:30-9pm.

Witch’s Woods (haunted house). Nashoba Ski, Westford, MA. 978-692-3033. MY RATING: C. Rt 2W to Rt. 2A/119, 6mi to Powers Rd. The worst one, skip it! Every Thu-Sun night Sep 29-Oct 28 + Oct 30,31.

Spooky World. Bayside Expo Center, Boston, MA. Probably the same as last year’s “Hallowscream”, which I rated C+. 6pm-11pm Fri Sat Sun. Matinees start 1pm Oct 21,22,28,29