Halloween Events in Boston 2016

Check out some Halloween cruises, movie marathons, and the Boston Common Costume Dash.


Photo by Olga Khvan

Halloween Parties

“The Haunted Ghost Ship” and “Titanic Masquerade” Cruises (October 29)

Bring your spooky spirit aboard a cruise ship and set out to Boston Harbor. For Halloween, the Provincetown II becomes “The Haunted Ghost Ship,” and “Titanic Masquerade” takes over the Spirit of Boston yacht. Both cruises will feature live DJs and plenty of drinks and dancing. The “Titanic Masquerade” organizers warn that costumes are absolutely required, so put on a mask and get ready for an exciting evening.

Provincetown II: $20+, Saturday, October 29, boards at 6:45 p.m. and departs at 7:30 p.m.; Spirit of Boston: $60+, Saturday, October 29, boards at 9:30 p.m. and departs at 10 p.m., Seaport World Trade Center, 200 Seaport Blvd., Boston, halloweencruises.com.

“Shipwrecked” Cruise (October 31)

If you can make it out on a Monday, spend an unforgettable Halloween night on the Provincetown II for the “Shipwrecked” cruise. There will be a live DJ playing all night, so dance with your friends and take in the spectacular views of the Boston Harbor. Costumes are not required, but come on, ’tis the season.

$20+, Monday, October 31, boards at 6:45 p.m., departs at 7:30 p.m., Seaport World Trade Center, 200 Seaport Blvd., Boston, halloweencruises.com

Boston Grownups Museum Night

Grownups will take over the Boston Children’s Museum for an evening in celebration of Halloween. Enjoy a full cash bar and dance to music provided by Kiss 108 DJ Rich DiMare. Play dress-up with your best costume, build a “big kid” fort, and reclaim your childhood sense of excitement at this Halloween edition of Boston Grownups Museum Night.

$25, Thursday, October 27, 7:30-11:30 p.m., Boston Children’s Museum, 308 Congress St., Boston, eventbrite.com.

Faneuil Hall Halloween Pub Crawl

Join in on the annual Halloween Boston Bar Crawl, stopping in at several bars around Faneuil Hall. “For Halloween weekend, Faneuil Hall will be transformed into the center of nightmare nightlife for all those who seek fun and excitement this year,” the organizers describe. “Not only are we expecting goblins, goons, and sexy teachers—but we may see some Pokemon scouring the streets as well.” So grab your friends and get ready to hit the cobblestone for a wild weekend.

$10, Friday, October 28, to Monday, October 31, Faneuil Hall, Boston, pubcrawls.com.

halloween events boston 2016

Photo by Ben Gebo

Live Performances

Old School Game Show’s “Freaky Deaky Halloween Hellraiser”

The A.R.T. describes this one, “Like the Price Is Right got drunk and started dancing on a tabletop!” Well then, who wouldn’t want to go to that? The Old School Game Show will take over Oberon for a night this month (and again in November) with “all the pageantry and analog style of a 1970s television game show.” Join in a live interactive experience blending Halloween fun and weird ’70s TV game shows—and comedy, of course. Dress up for the costume contest and be a part of the mayhem.

$15+, Saturday, October 15, 7:30 p.m., Oberon, 2 Arrow St., Cambridge, americanrepertorytheater.org.

Cirque of the Dead

Have you ever wondered what you’d get if you mixed a horror movie and a circus act? Maybe not. Nonetheless, Cirque of the Dead is bringing both the undead and death-defying stunts to Harvard Square, also at Oberon. There will be live music, zombies, acrobats, and more. The performers recommend dressing up for the show. That’ll certainly help you blend in, but maybe leave the stunts to the professionals.

$30+, Friday, October 21, to Saturday, October 29, Oberon, 2 Arrow St., Cambridge, americanrepertorytheater.org.

Boomstick: A Groovy Evil Dead Gorelesque!

The Somerville Theater is mixing scary and sexy to bring a haunted burlesque to Boston for Halloween. Local comic Kevin Harrington will host the event, featuring members of the Boston Burlesque and the Slaughterhouse Sweethearts. Following the live show, there will be a 35 mm screening of Sam Raimi’s Army of Darkness.

$15, Saturday, October 29, 8 p.m., Somerville Theater, 55 Davis Square, Somerville, somervilletheater.com.

halloween events boston 2016

Photo by Scott Istvan

Gorefest and Comedy from the Crypt

ImprovBoston has blended comedy and horror in their upcoming show, GoreFest. The scariest thing about 2016? The upcoming election. So, the team behind ImprovBoston is putting together a bloody, musical satire. Also, be warned: There will be fake blood and guts. Wear a poncho. ImprovBoston will also host a standup showcase with several local comedians. As the organizers describe, “Wrap your October like a mummy and jumpstart your November like Frankenstein.”

Gorefest: $25, Thursday, October 27, to Sunday, November 6; Comedy from the Crypt: $12, Monday, October 31, 8 p.m., ImprovBoston’s Studio Theater at 40 Prospect St., Cambridge; improvboston.com.

The Halloween Show

Celebrate the funny side of Halloween at the Improv Asylum’s Halloween Show, because laughter is always best accompanied by bone-chilling scares. The crew recommends dressing up to get in the spirit of Halloween. “It will be festive.” Period.

$15+, Wednesday, October 26, to Monday, October 31, Improv Asylum, 216 Hanover St., Boston, improvasylum.com.

halloween events boston 2016

Photo by Steve Wollkind

Halloween Movies

Coolidge Corner Theatre’s Halloween Horror Marathon

This year, the Coolidge will again screen 12 hours of “murder, mayhem, and masks on 35 mm film” in anticipation of Halloween. The 16th annual Halloween Horror Marathon will feature a Wes Craven double feature, the meta and satirical Scream, which is celebrating its 20th anniversary, and Scream 2. Afterward, stick around for four more movies. As per usual, the lineup won’t be released until the actual showing, so be sure to go and check them out for yourself.

$25 for double feature, $30 for marathon, Saturday, October 29, 11:59 p.m., 290 Harvard St., Brookline, coolidge.org.

The Brattle Theatre

Halloween is best celebrated with scary movies, and the Brattle Theatre is dishing them out all Hallo-weekend long. On Saturday, October 29, catch The Addams Family and a double feature for Pet Sematary, which includes a locally made documentary about the filming of the movie. On October 30, watch Nosferatu alongside a live musical score. Finally, on Halloween, don’t miss a free screening of The Bride of Frankenstein.

Prices TBA, Saturday, October 29, to Monday, October 31, 40 Brattle St., Cambridge, brattlefilm.org.

Halloween Tours

Beacon Hill with a Boo!

Discover the haunted side of Beacon Hill and wander through the narrow streets filled with trick-or-treaters and elaborate decorations. The Boo! tour, hosted by Boston by Foot, will showcase the mysterious and gruesome history of the historic Boston neighborhood. Visit the home of Dr. George Parkman, who was gruesomely murdered, hear the tales of witch hangings, and more.

$20, Monday, October 31, 6-7:30 p.m., 24 Beacon St., Boston, bostonbyfoot.org.

Ghosts and Gravestones

A city as old as Boston is sure to have some spooky stories and haunted history. Your guides on the Ghosts and Gravestones tour will tell you all about them. On this “frightseeing tour,” meander through burial grounds, hear tales of torture, and meet the city’s dead. You certainly won’t see Boston the same after you’ve heard the legends and stories of the city’s past.

$39, nightly through October 31, trolley boards beside the Marriott Long Wharf Hotel, 200 Atlantic Ave., Boston, ghostsandgraves.com.

Boston Common Costume Dash

It’s pretty common to see people going for runs through the streets of Boston, but seeing a Frankenstein run through the streets? A little less common. But, for the second year in a row, Bostonians will dress up in their best costumes and take on the Boston Common Costume Dash 5K. This year’s race is in support of the American Cancer Society, so your registration fee will be put to good use. After the race, there will be a Harpoon-sponsored pub crawl and costume contest. (You have to wear your costume during the race to be eligible for the contest, so suit up.)

$45, Saturday, October 29, 9 a.m., Copley Square, Boston, costumedash.com.

Canine Promenade

Photo by Chris Timmel

Halloween with Pets

6th Annual Canine Promenade

There are plenty of human costume contests for Halloween, but the Canine Promenade lets Fido to get in on the fun, too. You and your dog can dress up for a half-mile parade around the Esplanade to “highlight the park as a resource for dog owners and to raise awareness about park improvements.” The day is filled with fun activities and there is a grand prize for best costume and best duet (dog and human).

$15 advance registration per dog, $20 day of, Sunday, October 23, 12-2 p.m., Fiedler Field, Charles River Esplanade, Boston, esplanadeassociation.org.

Faneuil Hall Pet Parade and Costume Contest

If you miss the Canine Promenade, consider Faneuil Hall. Be sure to stick around for prizes, too. The event is free for all, but registration is required for the costume contest.

Free, Saturday, October 29, 12-2 p.m., Faneuil Hall Marketplace, facebook.com.


Pru Boo

Celebrate Halloween a day early at the Prudential Center by trick-or-treating at more than 50 stores and restaurants. There will also be face painting and magic shows, so bring your children and unlock your own inner child for a day of spooky fun. For a $4 donation to Horizons for Homeless Children, the partner for this year’s event, your child will receive a trick-or-treat bag to collect some candy.

$4 donation, Sunday, October 30, 11 a.m.-1 p.m., Prudential Center, Boston, prudentialcenter.com.

Haunted #OfftheWall Block Party at the South End Open Market

Once again, the area known as SoWa (but not SoWa, but still SoWa) will come alive for Halloween. To cap off its first season at new location Ink Block, the SEOM will host a live graffiti art gallery and block party. Booze included, ranging from Sam Adams craft brews to mimosas, hard cider to rosé and Prosecco. Yes, of course there’s a costume contest. Yes, of course there will be pumpkin painting.


Take a short drive or train ride out of Boston to visit the site of the Salem witch trials and enjoy plenty of spooky Halloween events. The town goes into full freaky mode for the holiday and sees more than 250,000 visitors during the month of October. There will be an ongoing Halloween carnival from October 14 through November 1, and tours of historic houses, including the Phillip’s House and the House of the Seven Gables. Be sure to check out Count Orlok’s Nightmare Gallery and the Chambers of Terror for some frights. And to learn about the history of Salem, visit the Salem Witch Museum, the Witch Dungeon Museum, and the New England Pirate Museum.


— MORE —

Pumpkin Floats

Haunted Attractions

The Best Places to Go Trick-or-Treating

A Definitive List of Creepy Things to Do in Boston

And even more Halloween coverage this way »