Harry Potter fans have mischief to manage at the Witches, Wizards & Wands Festival at the Historic Village at Allaire in Wall Twp. on October 5. Kick off Halloween in NJ by making a wand or witch’s hat, crafting a candle, getting your fortune told, practicing at a potions and herbalism station, scoring a palm reading and more.
Plan ahead for two days of witchy fun at Chestnut Hill, PA’s Witches & Wizards Weekend on October 18-19. On Friday, book a sitter and head to the Brews & Broomsticks Pub Crawl. The next day, gear up for the festival, complete with a straw maze, crafting, shopping, a DJ, Wizard Chess and more. Cheer on your favorite house at the Philadelphia Brotherly Love Cup Quidditch Tournament, or break a sweat at the 5K Wizarding Run.
Did you know Charles Addams, the creator and cartoonist behind The Addams Family, is from Westfield? The town is throwing its second all-together ooky AddamsFest (select dates Oct. 17-27). New this year is Gomez’s Dynamite Model Railway, featuring exhibitions from The Model Railroad Club of Union. Hit The Addams Family Fun Zone on October 20 for street performances, masterpieces by Maniac Pumpkin Carvers and a Monster Mash Dance Party. Bring the kids in costume for The Westfield Optimist Club’s Halloween Parade and Costume Contest and Pugsley’s Trunk or Treat on the 27th.
On October 19-20, shop creepy gifts, horror memorabilia, taxidermy and other oddities at Trenton Punk Rock Flea Market: Halloween Edition. More than 200 vendors and crafters will be there, along with a craft beer garden, food trucks, onsite tattooing and live music.
If witches are your thing, odds are you’ve seen the movie Hocus Pocus. See it again at bergenPAC in Englewood, this time in the company of Mary Sanderson herself, actress Kathy Najimy (Oct. 25). Najimy will kick the night off with behind-the-scenes stories and a Q&A before the movie screening.
The game’s afoot at the Inn of Cape May for Sherlock Holmes Weekend (Oct. 25-27, Nov. 1-3). Solve an all-new murder mystery with Sherlock and Watson, then search for clues on the historic Victorian grounds before the detective’s findings are revealed.
At Mullica Hill’s Night of Terror, zombie hunters can practice their aim on a hellish Haunted Paintball Hayride through the woods (through Nov. 2). Shoot from mounted guns at targets, moving props and the live undead.
Halloween in NJ isn’t complete without some real-deal ghost stories. Asbury Park is the year-round home of The Paranormal Museum. Take a tour any Saturday or Sunday to see exhibits about the Jersey Devil, Ouija boards and real-deal haunted dolls. Sit on the singing couch, which has been said to harbor positive energy and the crooning of a woman’s ghost.