Experience Halloween in the Hudson Valley:
40+ Spooky Places to Visit
When the Fall Season comes around people start planning Apple Picking and Pumpkin Picking Trips and start getting into the Halloween Spirit. Although many people head into New York City for Halloween events, I’m here to show you that experiencing Halloween in the Hudson Valley is a better choice. You will e surprised by all the incredible, and sometimes frightening, things that there is to do!
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Why Halloween in the Hudson Valley so Special?
The Hudson Valley is one of the most popular places to visit during the Fall season and that is especially true for those who leaf peep and those who want to experience Halloween in the Hudson Valley. It has beautiful scenery and a lot of activities to do, that some people are surprised by how much there actually is to do.
Many people come to the Hudson Valley during the Halloween Season; most notably to visit the famous town of Sleepy Hollow that Ichabod Crane immortalized in his writings.
But Halloween in the Hudson Valley is not only celebrated in Sleepy Hollow or on October 31st, the spooky fun actually starts during September for many local attractions. From haunted houses to a spooky corn maze to scary ghost stories, the Historic Hudson Valley has something for everyone!
Things to do for Halloween in the Hudson Valley
If you are looking for things to do to celebrate Halloween in the Hudson Valley, then you should take a look at this list. Some may be familiar to you, but others may surprise you!
1. Explore a town with a spooky past during Halloween in the Hudson Valley
– Albany, NY
Ten Broeck Mansion is said to be haunted by spirits that do not only come out during Halloween time. Built during the late 1790s for General Abraham Ten Broeck and his wife, Elizabeth Van Rensselaer, after a fire destroyed their first home. Over the years, stories of ghostly apparitions have been whispered about unhappy spirits who are said to haunt the mansion’s halls and the grounds of this 18th century estate. Tours are available by advance reservations.
– Chester, NY
People visiting Oxford Depot Cemetery have reported dark figures chasing other visitors away, floating orbs of light that can sometimes be seen, footsteps heard from behind visitors at times, and the sound of phantom whistling. This may be one of the spookiest places to visit during Halloween in the Hudson Valley because it actually in a cemetery.
– Garrison, NY
Down river in Garrison NY, the Bird and Bottle Inn reportedly houses the ghost of Emily Warren, the woman who lived there originally. She is reported to roam the establishment and people claim to see a hazy figure and reportedly hear her singing. As a working establishment, this is a great place to visit during Halloween in the Hudson Valley.
– Goshen, NY
Goshen Historic Track is said to be haunted by the spirit of a jockey and his horse, who both drowned in the nearby lake early 1900s. They’ve been seen riding along the lake or chasing visitors through the dirt-road trails; other witnesses say the clip-clopping of ghostly horse hooves has come from seemingly nowhere.
– Hudson, NY
Spook Rock Road in Hudson is a place of legend, where it is said an Indian princess, her lover, and an angry sky god collided long ago to great and terrifying effect. This boulder on the road near Claverack Creek is said to be where a beautiful Indian Maiden and her lover from an opposing nation rest after she defied the will of her family to marry a man she didn’t love, and ran away together, stopping to rest on a boulder.
The story goes that the couple’s treachery so enraged the Sky-Holder God, that he sent torrential rain to flood the area and drown the couple. It’s said you can hear the princess moaning, at the boulder, as death carries her away, and that at night, you may catch a glimpse of her.
– Irvington, NY
- Washington Irving’s Sunnyside, historic home of the famed writer of “The Legend of Sleepy Hollow” and “Rip Van Winkle,” is said to be haunted by Irving himself, as well as, his nieces, who used to take care of the home. Irving’s ghost has a reputation for pinching women, and his nieces tidy up after the museum is closed for the night.
- Church of St. Barnabas is allegedly haunted by two separate spirits, one is believed to be that of a former pastor and the other that of a former pastor’s wife, who died somewhere in the early 1900’s. She seems to be especially drawn to the children of pastors who live in the rectory and will visit them at night.
– Monroe, NY
- The McGarrah Stagecoach Tavern Inn in Monroe, NY has been the topic of several ghost-related television shows. What adds to the appeal is that this historic inn, from the late 1700s, is one of the oldest buildings in town. Now part of the Cornerstone Masonic Historical Society, the building has been there for over 200 years and is the “oldest Masonic lodge in all of New York.”
- Also located in Monroe, Museum Village houses over 2,000 books, letters and journals, as well as, artifacts from the 19th century. This may lend to the suspected paranormal activity that takes place on the property.
– Napanoch, NY
The Haunted Shanley Hotel has been described as the most haunted location of the East Coast. Public and private ghost tours are available, and you can even spend the night here, if you dare. This gentleman’s club turned bed and breakfast is said to be haunted by a former owner whose children passed away when they were very young. Several disembodied voices have been recorded, and the recordings are available for a listen on the hotel’s website. This is truly spooky and somewhat frightening!
– Newburgh, NY
Locals say they have seen the ghost of a little boy crying in the middle of the lake. They say he drowned here long ago. He also has been known to make bubbles in the water and scream when a child gets too close to the water’s edge.
Pine Plains, NY
Dutch’s Spirits was an underground complex that hid a distillery run by the mob during Prohibition. It was financed by gangster Dutch Schultz, and may be haunted by him, too. Visitors can book tours, and some have noticed an eerie feeling of being watched while there.
– Poughkeepsie, NY
- The historic Reformed Dutch Church of Poughkeepsie, built in 1921, is said to be haunted by the ghost of a former caretaker. Witnesses have heard the jingle of his keys and the tap of his fingers on his old office desk; his whistling has been heard in the gym and in the kitchen.
- Built in 1888, the Christ Episcopal Church is said to be haunted by apparitions and shadows that appear around the altar and elsewhere. These include:
- an older female parishioner who appears in her Sunday clothes, sitting in a pew halfway back
- a happy man who has appeared as an audibly laughing face floating in the air
- a vanishing bat who causes the candles to go out
- former church Rev. Alexander Cummings, who has been seen as an apparition on the bell tower steps and around the altar
- Sheahan Hall at Marist College is said to be haunted by a student named Shelly Sperling, who was killed in 1975 by Louis Acedevo, her rejected suitor. I wouldn’t tell the students that currently reside there, though.
– Purchase, NY
- SUNY Purchase college is believed to be haunted in several spots, including its small cemetery, where strange noises and ghostly presences have been reported, and the house across from Starbucks, where resides, according to rumor, the ghost of an elderly man who hanged himself in the attic or the basement.
- Another spot of interest to ghost seekers may be the Elephant Tree–it is said to have branches that sway without wind, perhaps due to the legend that someone was once hanged here, believed to possibly slaves or be a young girl who committed suicide. Lastly, the water tower is rumored to be haunted by the ghost of a young boy who died in the water long ago.
- The Castle, Manhattanville College’s trademark, has many lost souls that still roam the halls. Originally, the castle was home to Mr. Whitelaw Reid, a millionaire. His three children died in the castle during a terrible fire, and still roam the hallways of the west room right where the painting of them is. Other strange occurrences include the temporary immobilization of tour guides while giving tours to students, cold spots and sensations of being watched while roaming the halls. There are several accounts of doors opening and closing by themselves.
- Spellman Hall, the freshman dormitory building, is most famous for the Ghost of 118. It is said that back when the school was of a Catholic persuasion and the faculty of nuns lived on campus, one nun hung herself in her room, Spellman 118. Since then, the room has been renovated and combined with a surrounding room to accommodate the Resident Advisor.
Related Article: New York State Castles that are Hidden in Plain Sight
– Red Hook, NY
Blithewood Mansion was built by National Guard captain and real estate mogul Andrew C. Zabriskie, who commissioned four statues for his garden. Each statue would depict one of his four daughters. When tragedy struck and one of his daughters was killed falling out of a window of a New York City apartment, her statue went missing. Rumor has it that her ghost wanders the property in place of the missing statue. In 1951, the mansion was given to Bard College and has sprawling grounds and a beautiful garden overlooking the Hudson River.
– Rhinebeck, NY
There are so many things to do in Rhinebeck, but this one is quite unusual. The Clinton Community Library reportedly has ghosts that haunt the library no matter the hour. Visitors have heard whispering or books falling off of shelves. Their footsteps have been heard walking the library and climbing the stairs.
– Troy, NY
The West Hall of Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute,which currently houses the college’s arts department, was once a hospital with a psychiatric ward. If you find yourself around there after sundown, you may just hear the footsteps of Nurse Betsy as she checks on her patients in the ward. There have been reports of screaming, whining, and piano music, which apparently the nurse played to calm patients. According to legend, Betsy perished in a psych ward fire while trying to save her patients, and has been trapped there ever since.
– Wappingers Falls, NY
Miss Fanny’s Victorian Party House has been featured numerous times in paranormal television shows. Built circa 1870, the house is primarily significant for its unaltered interior. Filled with Gothic antiques and horror-film paraphernalia including a coffin, this home is said to be haunted by a menacing presence. Used now for special events and personal events, such as private events or small gatherings such as an unusual girls night out, showers, birthdays, meetings, photo shoots, and whatever else your imagination can muster up.
They also hold their own events throughout the year from ghost hunts to psychic, Halloween parties, and more.
– Warwick, NY
Silvio’s Italian Villa Restaurant is housed in a building that originally dates back to the 1700s. In 1972, Roy Vail’s sister was found murdered in 1972, and Roy was rumored to be a suspect. Ten years later, he committed suicide in the Peach Room. Witnesses say doors open and close, objects are moved, the apparitions of a little girl and a cat are seen, and much more.
– Windham, NY
Captain’s Inn Point Lookout in Windham sits just off of Route 23, a sentinel on a cliff where on a clear day you can see mountain ranges in Massachusetts, Connecticut, New Hampshire, and Vermont. Closed at the time of this posting, legend has it that inside Room 12 a woman was murdered and, ever since, strange activity has plagued the guests. From flickering lights to foul odors, to disembodied voices, guests have reported strange occurrences over the years.
2. Participate in a Trunk or Treat Event or Halloween Parade
Show off your best Halloween Costumes and the many local Trunk or Treat events. If this is your first time hearing about these Trunk or Treat events, its where you open the trunk of your car, add Halloween decorations and hand out candy to children dressed in their best costumes. While this is a fun and safe way to go trick or treating, this eliminates the need to venture out Halloween night.
Many local towns also host a Halloween parade to have the local children and family members enjoy the season.
3. Take a Tour of Haunted Locations
Sleepy Hollow Cemetery Tours
The best known cemetery tour happens right in Sleepy Hollow, NY. The Sleepy Hollow Cemetery tour takes place during the day and in the evening. The Classic Daytime tour highlights Washington Irving’s contribution, as well as, Andrew Carnegie and William Rockefeller, who were also laid to rest here.
They offer several different tours, while the Murder and Mayhem tour may be the most popular, taking place Saturday Evenings. This walk-through experience is so scary that it is not suitable for children under the age of 18. Get advance tickets here. This is probably one of the scariest tours to take during Halloween in the Hudson Valley.
The Haunted Shanley Hotel
The Haunted Shanley Hotel has been described as the most haunted location of the East Coast of the United States. Public and private ghost tours are available, and you can even spend the night here, if you dare.
Legends by Candlelight Ghost Tours
Located at Clermont State Historic Site, in Germantown, visitors will meet a horde of “ghosts” from Clermont’s past as they tell their stories of glory, loss, success, and failure. Some ghosts may be scary, some may be funny but all the stories they tell are true! These encounters take place on select days at the end of October. Click here for more information.
4. Watch a Halloween-Inspired Show
Hearts of the Hollow
This year, the list of shows that showcase Halloween in the Hudson Valley has grown by one more: The Hearts of the Hollow Musical in Carmel, NY. Everyone is welcome to see the new twists and turns of a beloved tale. Inspired by “The Legend of Sleepy Hollow”, this production takes you on a musical journey with special effects and characters sure to entertain. Purchase tickets here.
Taking place from late September through Halloween, Irving’s ‘Legend’ is now performed outside under the stars at Washington Irving’s Sunnyside. Master storyteller Jonathan Kruk will cast a spell with dramatic performances of the classic tale. Live music and an appearance from the Headless Horseman himself make this a spooky spectacular experience for all ages. This event requires walking. Tickets can be found here.
5. Visit Local Farms
In addition to picking fruit and pumpkins in a pumpkin patch, many Hudson Valley Farms offer so much more to celebrate Halloween in the Hudson Valley. Many celebrate with a costume parade through the farm, food trucks for everyone to enjoy and Halloween-inspired treats, such as pumpkin-flavored ice cream!
Celebrate Halloween in the Hudson Valley with these 10+ Events
– A Very Fluffy Halloween
It’s their version of a Halloween fest – only way cuter. Enjoy this fun guided farm tour that lets you meet the animals of Lilymoore Farm and Dreaming of A Chance pigeon sanctuary. This year has more alpacas in Halloween costumes, goats too – who knows maybe the llamas will join in the fun this year. Come dressed up for the event. They do a great craft at the end of the farm tour. Select days at the end of October. Get tickets and learn more here.
Related Article: A Visit to Lilymoore Alpaca Farm you will not soon forget!
– Bannerman Castle
During the Halloween Season, Bannerman Castle Island hosts several events. They usually have a showing of Dracula with the Castle as a backdrop. From the Bram Stoker novel, this is the original Broadway production that premiered in 1927 and was revised in 1997 starring Frank Langella.
They also host screenings of Little Shop of Horrors, Young Frankenstein and Hunchback of Notre Dame and is a great spot to enjoy a lovely evening outside. Information can be found here.
Related Article: Take a peek at Bannerman Castle located on the Hudson River
– Blackthorne Halloween Weekend
Located in Durham, Blackthorne Resort’s traditional Halloween weekend is a spooktacular good time for the entire family! Pumpkin carving demonstrations, costume contests, live entertainment, and an onsite haunted house are just a few of the fun activities to look forward to on this weekend of fun. Join us……if you dare! Find more information on their website.
– Dog Costume Contest
Have a cute dog? How does he/she look in a wizard costume? Once again, the crowd favorite Dog Costume Contest is on the schedule on Saturday September 24 at the Weekend of Wallkill. Bring your dog dressed in his/her best costume. Maybe one that goes along with our ‘wizard’ and magical theme of the weekend – though any costume is great. This is probably one of the best events for your pet during Halloween in the Hudson Valley.
– Great Jack O’ Lantern Blaze
Located on the grounds of the Historic Van Cortlandt Manor, the Great Jack O’Lantern Blaze is a annual event that brings thousands of visitors. Taking place from September through Mid-November, discover a breathtaking display of more than 7,000 illuminated jack o’ lanterns, all the designs and hand-carved pumpkins on site are done by their team of artisans. Tickets often sell out for an entry time on the weekend, so plan accordingly.
If you are in Long Island, then Blaze: Long Island is for you! The spooky trail takes you along their Hall of Fame, Pumpkin Planetarium and more…
– Halloween Ball
Celebrate All Hallows’ Eve below the surface of the earth in our 183 year old haunted cellars at Brotherhood Winery in Washingtonville! Full buffet dinner and open wine tasting bar. TICKETS are all-inclusive and extremely LIMITED. Saturday, October 29, 2022 • 7-11 PM
TICKETS: $100. This is a 21 and over event. Get tickets to this great event here.
– Harvest Hunt
Calling all kids and families! Come to HARVEST HUNT at Locust Grove in Poughkeepsie! Saturdays and Sundays in October and Monday, October 10! A special story walk/scavenger hunt for over 30 decorated pumpkins hidden among the gardens and trees! Safe, fun, stroller and wheelchair friendly! $10/person, kids under 4 are FREE. Click here https://www.eventbrite.com/org/30347364870?ref=eofblike to purchase tickets
– Haunted House of Demons
Studio 845 Presents the Haunted House of Demonic Possession! Please come and support local arts by experiencing our 4th Annual Haunted House! This Haunt is Open to all ages but beware, we aim to scare! Enter if you Dare!!! Located at Studio 845, Newburgh Mall
$10 Per Victim: Cash ONLY. Running from October 28-31 from 6:30-8pm
– Haunted Huguenot Street
Every Friday and Saturday evening in September, Historic Huguenot Street offers walking tours of the National Historic Landmark District that focuses on the eerie and unexplained occurrences in New Paltz history. Follow your guide for an exterior walking tour down one of the oldest streets in New York State and the United States, where you’ll explore both the myths and real-life frightening events that have haunted Huguenot Street for centuries.
– Headless Horseman Escape Rooms
Located in Ulster Park on State Route 9W, The Headless Horseman Escape Rooms are fully interactive and an immersive experience unlike anything you have ever done before. No longer do you sit back and watch the show… now you are 100% part of it. The minimum capacity of each room is 6 and maximum capacity of 12, so bring a group and have fun! Learn more about it here.
– Headless Horseman Haunted Attractions
Named #1 in America, the Headless Horseman Attractions in Ulster Park celebrates 30 years of frightening the public. With a haunted walking trail and 9 additional attractions, this is a popular destination of many. Although they have stopped doing the Headless Horseman Hayrides, there is still plenty to see and do and this event.
In addition to their regular schedule, they also off Children’s Day Activities two times during their season, which includes their popular Magic Moon Maze.
– Halloween in the Haunted Cocktail Garden
Cooper’s Daughter Spirits is hosting a Halloween party in collaboration with Local 111 and Supreme Soft Serve! Chef Josephine Proul, owner of Local 111, is a Food Network Chopped winner and contestant of other Food Network shows such as Cutthroat Kitchen and Beat Bobby Flay. Tickets Include: Adult trick-or-treat to 3 snack stations by Local 111 for chili lime peanuts, truffle chips, and nori popcorn, Adult trick-or-teat to 3 food stations by Local 111 for Korean style corn dogs, black bread muffulettas, and pumpkin soup, Adult trick-or-treat to a dessert station by Supreme Soft Serve for mini spooky ice cream sandwich and a roast your own marshmallow ice cream sundae, Two drink tickets with gratuity included and so much more…
– Halloween Spooktacular
This ‘Not Spooky’ Spooktacular takes place at the Westchester Children’s Museum in Rye, NY on Saturday October 29th. With Arts and Crafts, Science Workshops and more, your child will have a great time! Costumes are encouraged! Find out more here.
– Home of the ‘Legend’
Taking place between Mid-September through Mid-November, this family-friendly event takes you on a tour of the home of Washington Irving, decorated for Autumn, as well as, providing a shadow puppet short film and games on the lawn. A special exhibit highlights how the Legend has lived in the imagination of popular culture through the centuries since its publication. Tickets information can be found here.
– Hudson Valley’s Annual Bizarre Bazaar
Taking place on October 15th, the Hudson Valley’s Annual Bizarre Bazaar is An assortment of oddities, hand crafted goods, artists and a vendor market during the day. (11-4). Music provided by DJ Shredder spinning classic 80s horror music to get you in the mood for spooky season. Puppet/dragon show throughout the day and Emily Quant, belly/sword dancer starts at 6. Stay for the movie: HALLOWEEN ENDS (tickets sold separately). $5 entrance fee for the market. Over 20 vendors. Restaurant and snack shack on premise.
– Kevin McCurdy’s Haunted Mansion
Located in Wappingers Falls, Kevin McCurdy’s Haunted Mansion consists of a haunted trail, The Asylum and the popular Wicked Woods returns, consisting of The Funhouse, Dark Nature, Lost Souls Cemetery, Merry Krampus and more… Last year (2021) they celebrated the 45th season of Kevin McCurdy and this event has become a tradition for many. This event is open Friday, Saturday and Sunday evenings in October.
– Mystery at the Museum
Stop by the Pine Bush UFO & Paranormal Museum for this unique family-friendly haunted house experience! A haunted attraction that the whole family can enjoy, Halloween fun for ages 10 and under.
– No Scare Halloween
Every year, Museum Village in Monroe hosts their ‘No-Scare Halloween’. Admission Price includes Games, Costume Parade, Crafts, a Scavenger Hunt and more. This is one of the less scary way to celebrate Halloween in the Hudson Valley. Check price and search for tickets here.
– Peace, Love and Pumpkins
Located on the grounds of Bethel Woods Center for the Arts, you will find this enchanting walk-thru Halloween experience. During this walk-thru experience, guests will wind through the garden trails of beautiful Bethel Woods, highlighting thousands of unique hand-carved jack-o-lanterns and glowing themed pumpkin art. Two nights, they offer Friday Night Frights where scary things await.
– Prison of Horrors
Located in Warwick at the Hudson Sports Complex, this event takes place select days in October. The complex is known far and wide as a home for the paranormal. Whether it be the ghosts of the children who never found reformation in its halls or the convicted who died within its walls, something at Hudson Sports Complex demands to be heard, and sometimes, even seen… or felt. Tickets can be purchased here.
– Pure Terror Scream Park
Pure Terror Scream Park is known as New York’s scariest haunted house and the worlds longest overall walk-through haunted attraction holding the current Guinness World Record. With 10 scary haunted houses at one massive location, in addition to a food court, gift shop, music and FREE photo ops with unusual monsters on the Midway, it’s no wonder that this is a popular destination for many enthusiasts of Halloween in the Hudson Valley. Running weekends in October, this event is not for the faint at heart.
– Rocky Horror Picture Show
The Rocky Horror Picture Show is back at Paramount Hudson Valley. Yes, there is audience participation! Rated R (Children under 17 not permitted without an adult). Come dressed as your favorite character or in your best Halloween costume! Prop bags and other fan merchandise will be sold at the show.
– Rosendale Theatre
Located on Main Street in Rosendale, Rosendale Theatre hosts several showings of Halloween-inspired films, including The Rocky Horror Picture Show, The Shining, as well as, children’s mivie, Wallace and Gromit: The Curse of the were-rabbit and costume parade.
– Shadow Soiree: A Halloween Paranormal Formal Event
The Shadow Soiree is a Victorian themed evening at the UFO & Paranormal Museum, in Pine Bush, that you will not soon forget. Kicking off the night, there will be a Phantasmagoria Show. Following the phantasmagoria show, guests will be invited to join a Digital Seance. Dressing up in your best Victorian-style garb is highly encouraged! Light refreshments will be available. Learn more here.
– Trick or Treat Weekend
Taking place on October 29th and 30th at Barton Orchards in Poughquag this event is Fun for the whole family, enjoy live music, magic shows, Pig Races and more! Admission includes access to our Fun Park with our new GIANT SLIDE, Corn Maze, Hayrides, Petting Zoo, Wooden Ship Playground, and Dog Park too!
– Witchingtonville After Dark
When most of us think of Halloween events, we think of child-focused gatherings that cater to the sweet side of the festivity. Witchingtonville After Dark is about to change all of that on the night of October 15th, in the center of Washingtonville. Designed to entertain teens and adults, Witchingtonville After Dark mirrors a haunted carnival and has all of the attractions you’d expect — and more!
Do Not Miss Out on These Exciting Activities for an Epic Halloween in the Hudson Valley
If you wait until October 30th to make your plans, then you will definitely miss out!
Tips for Having a Memorable Halloween in the Hudson Valley:
- Make sure to confirm ALL INFORMATION on the corresponding websites before making plans
- Many of these events are rain or shine
- Many also sell out quickly, so buy your tickets early.
- Double check each events video and photography policy. Some all both, one or none at all.
- Be prepared for any kind of weather and dress appropriately. Here are some items that may help.
Until the Next Adventure…