SALEM – New England, as a whole, has become a region associated with its beautiful autumn landscapes and rich, spooky history. But there is perhaps no city in the entire cluster of six states that is better to spend some of the Halloween season in than Salem.

In the fall seasons of 2014, 2017, and 2018, I visited the city of Salem to explore what autumnal and frightening sights would be in store. Along with my family, I toured the House of the Seven Gables, endured a horrific scare zone themed to Frankenstein's monster, and explored a museum of some of the top icons in the history of horror cinema.

Salem is truly a lovely environment to spend time in during this time of year and 2019 has proved to be no exception as a flurry of events have pervaded the area.

For one, there is the annual Salem Horror Fest, which was embroiled in controversy this year. With the founders having posted many anti-Donald Trump ideas on social media, they were told by city officials to remove the posts or find a new location to hold their event. So it was that founder Kevin Lynch moved the festival from the Regional Visitor Center to The Bridge at 211 instead. Lynch told that the purpose of the festival is to "explore cultural anxiety." No one is more synonymous with that than Trump, after all.

Additionally, the annual Salem Devils Chase did not have to change venues as the 6.66 mile long race went off without a hitch. The conceit of this event is that runners are supposed to dress up in Halloween costumes and this year, people who completed the race were dressed as Big Bird, clowns, and even a Dunkin' Donuts coffee cup.

This October has also seen many seance-type occurrences in Salem. A giant Ouija board descended upon the city, but it has been available for the majority of the month. Conversely, tonight is a one-night only event for people who want to connect with their pets on a spiritual level, regardless of whether or not they are still living. The Witch’s Familiar with Witchdoctor Utu is returning to the Omen in Salem for its third year of connecting with the spirit of animals. If that's something you're into, tickets are just seventy-five dollars.

Lastly, in addition to trick-or-treating, there will be many festivities in Salem on the day of Halloween. This includes a fireworks show at night over the North River and a concert featuring musicians who worked with James Brown and Steely Dan. Happy haunting in Salem everyone!

Photo by Ehud Neuhaus on Unsplash