Fall is one of the most action-packed times of all in Delaware; a time that is full of festivals that embrace and accentuate the season’s spirit. Halloween is an especially fun-filled holiday where costumes are welcome and the fun ranges from humorous to downright scary throughout an assortment of spooky-and-kooky events that are uniquely Delaware.
Here are a few top Halloween events in Delaware to get you started:
Sea Witch Halloween & Fiddler’s Festival (Oct. 27-29)
One of the beach area’s most colorful fall festivals, this quirky weekend celebration includes a Sea Witch Parade and Costume Contest, a Fiddlers Contest, the Sea Witch Cottage and Heritage Craft, and a Best Costumed Pet Contest. Just in case that wasn't enough, there’s a "cackle contest" for all witches and warlocks, soap carving and fish printing for the kids, a kids' dinosaur safari, scarecrow making, a broom-tossing contest, and Trick or Treating and a haunted bonfire in Dewey Beach. The 411: Festivities take place at and around the Rehoboth Beach Bandstand on Rehoboth Avenue. Be sure to catch a few of Rehoboth’s top-notch restaurants while you’re in town!
Children’s Fantasy Trail at Cape Henlopen State Park (Oct. 23-25)
Kids are encouraged to get decked out in their costumes and come for some trick-or-treating for candy and toys with their favorite storybook characters along the jack-o-lantern-lined trail. Each evening under the tent, there will be singing, juggling, magic and more.
Lewes Legends Tour (Wed. Now - Oct. 18)
For a spooky night in one of Delaware’s most historic towns, join the Lewes Historical Society for “Spooky Stories: Shipwrecks & Shoals,” featuring a costumed interpreter who will lead visitors on a walking journey of the town’s haunted past of pirates and privateers. The night includes an eerie visit to two old buildings and St. Peter’s Church cemetery, and tales about the lives and (afterlives) of the town’s best-known residents. The 411: Tour schedule will be announced on the Lewes Historical Society website. Best suited for students ages 8-12.
Boo-B-Que by the Sea (Oct. 20-21)
This family-oriented two-day event will feature music entertainment, craft and food vendors, adult beverages, and (of course), a highly competitive barbeque competition. To enter the competition, both pro and backyard grillers should contact event organizer. Participants will be set up in the south inlet campground at Delaware Seashore State Park, between Dewey Beach and Bethany Beach. Proceeds from the event will benefit Delaware State Parks’ Children in Nature program and other outdoor programming.
Mysteries of History (Oct. 28)
Explore the unusual tombstones of St. Peter’s cemetery, and the history of Lewes as you travel around Front and Second Streets in Lewes.
Boo at the Zoo (Oct. 20-21)
Trick-or-Treat at the Brandywine Zoo! Celebrate Halloween Brandywine Zoo-style with this merry, not scary, event. Kids can trick-or-treat through the zoo as it gets dark in their Halloween costumes! The 411: Brandywine Zoo, 1001 N. Park Drive, Wilmington, DE ,pre-register on their website, www.brandwinezoo.org, Costumes encouraged.
Wags, Witches & Warlocks (Oct. 28)
Mark your calendars, prepare costumes for your family and pets and attend a fun-filled day to benefit local animal rescue, Partners for Paws DE. Face painting, pumpkin painting, costume contests for both people and pets in Bethany Beach.
3 Palms, Boo! At the Zoo (Fri. and Sat. Sept. 29 - Oct. 28)
Once again, the Zoo has become haunted! Visit from 7 p.m. to 9 p.m. on Friday or Saturday for a walk through the decked out haunted woods. Blackbird Forest is spooky enough at night, but now there's a graveyard, ghosts, scarecrows, pumpkins, skeletons, witches, and a few other surprises along the way! Spooky, NOT scary, family friendly, and great for kids.
Out & About Halloween Loop (Oct. 28)
There is no official starting point. Select the nightspot you’d like to visit first, pay the cover charge, and you will receive a wristband that gains you admission to all other Loop venues without paying another cover. Costumes are encouraged!
Across Delaware each fall, an assortment of seemingly innocuous places are transformed into what might best be called “fright centers,” full of scary moments and fearful fun. Most are not recommended for the youngins – for Halloween fun more suited to kids, visit these Family-Friendly Halloween events.
Frightland (Fri., Sat. and Sun. Sept. 29 - Nov. 4)
This former farm field is transformed each Halloween into a sprawling complex of haunted houses, complete with amusement rides and concession stand. Plan on a 3- or 4-hour stay for Maximum Halloween fun, especially as the lines grow longer approaching Halloween day itself (consider buying a VIP Speed Pass).
Screams at the Beach (Fri. and Sat. Sept. 29 - Oct. 28)
Haunted houses, haunted hayrides, woods of terror, a haunted cemetery, mazes and zombie paintball. Six terrifying attractions on six acres in Georgetown.
Pea Patch Paranormal Adventure at Fort Delaware (Fri. and Sat. October 6-28)
In the Civil War, this fort located in the center of the Delaware River was home to prisoners from the Confederate Army, who endured harsh conditions as they awaited release. Today, Fort Delaware has become a center of paranormal excitement, featuring “ghost-hunting” tours that have been featured on national TV. Through the month of October, go on “recreational paranormal investigation" on Oct. 31. The 411: You get to Fort Delaware by way of a ferry that leaves from Delaware City.
Hockessin Haunted House (Fri. and Sat. Oct. 20-28)
At this deceptively suburban scare center, guests will be escorted by a private guide through the rooms and passageways of the Clark house where they will encounter the spirits and demons that reside within. Visit the parlor, the kitchen, the upstairs bedroom, a witches' den, a 3-D room and the Hellevator. Experience paranormal activity, participate in a séance, and meet a mad scientist and his subjects. As you leave, beware of what lurks around the pool and in the graveyards. ALL proceeds benefit Comp Animals Pet Rescue - an all volunteer, no-kill rescue that helps all animals in need.
Slaughter House Farms (Fri. and Sat. Oct. 6 - 29)
Once a year a local farm in Laurel Delaware transforms into what some call a brutally morbid nightmare the likes of which has not been seen or recorded in history. Rumor has it that TJ Scott bought the farm after a long stay at a local mental hospital. The farm is located just off route 13 in Laurel Delaware close enough to lore passing visitors of the busy highway and on to the farm property. All proceeds benefit Operation We Care. Operation We Care sends much needed care packages to our soldiers serving overseas.
Nightmare’s Haunted House (Fri. and Sat. Oct. 6 - 29)
Make a visit to Nightmare's Haunted House and Pin Head, Dr. Death, The Butcher and The Cobber will be waiting for you. Oh and don't forget the Chainsaw Clown. The Vortex will be spinning your nightmares away. Prepare to be scared like never before.