SALEM, Mass. — Tonight’s parade kicks off a month of Halloween revelry in the Witch City.
Salem’s Haunted Happenings celebration will have more than 150 events throughout October and promises something for everyone, from trick-or-treating and the annual zombie walk to live theater, arts and music events.
“It’s just a really festive month to be in Salem,” said Kate Fox, executive director of Destination Salem, the city’s tourism office. “Haunted Happenings is a tremendous, collaborative effort ... There’s such a range. It goes from the historic to the haunted and pure entertainment, plus food and shopping.”
Destination Salem compiles all of October’s events, as well as maps and other information at their website, www.hauntedhappenings.org. They’re continually adding updates and events to the calendar, said Fox.
This year, a new open market will set up on the Essex Street pedestrian mall for the last three weekends in October. The city has contracted New England Open Markets, the organization that created the popular SoWa Open Market in Boston’s South End, to manage it. Arts and crafts vendors will set up on Essex Street and Derby Square Saturdays and Sundays beginning Oct. 12.
On Oct. 20, a coordinated “flash mob” dance will take over the Salem common. Organized by Salem State University students, the event is in the theme of Lady Gaga’s song “Born this Way,” said Fox, and participants are encouraged to come in costume. Dance lessons to learn the choreography will be given before the flash mob at the Boys and Girls Club on Hawthorne Boulevard.
In addition to the city’s lineup of haunted houses, cemetery tours and ghost stories at the Witch House and House of Seven Gables, several new events promise thrills and chills, said Fox.
Cinema Salem will host “Scary Mary and the Audio Corsette,” an event Fox described as “a 1980’s rock horror spectacle” Saturdays at midnight. The R-rated program will have live music and a film, created and directed by Kevin Letourneau of Salem.