The Best Halloween Events for Every Age Group

Young and not-so-young alike can enjoy the holiday

The Portsmouth Halloween Parade on October 31 is the place to show off your best costume.

Photo by David J. Murray

Spooky season is upon us. We all know our towns’ trick-or-treating schedules and our nearest haunted house, but don’t skip this list: the state’s best one-off Halloween happenings for everyone in the family.

Best for Little Ghouls & Goblins

Not-So-Spooky Spectacular
October 24

Don your greatest family costumes and hit the museum for a day of All Hallows’ Eve-themed fun. Go on a trick-or-treat scavenger hunt, tour a specially designed “bat cave” and try on costumes from Ballet New England. Story times, wacky science experiments and nighttime safety tips are on the docket too.


Portsmouth Halloween Parade
October 31

This isn’t a regular parade; it’s a cool parade. Independently organized since 1995, the nighttime event provides a platform for intricate costumes and plenty of individuality and free speech. The organizers also hold a series of other events throughout October for those who like their Halloween hard-rockin’, including poetry slam Undead Beat Night on October 20 and the Jumbo Circus Peanuts masquerade dance party on October 29.

Science Fiction Double Feature

October 7-16

Barnstead’s Hampstead Stage Company has created an all-new interpretation of Mary Shelley’s monstrous classic, and they’re bringing it to Concord’s Hatbox Theatre. Stick around after the performances for talkbacks with the cast about the process of creating the world of Dr. Frankenstein and his monster.

October 29

Another original production is Northeastern Ballet Theatre’s take on Bram Stoker’s famous tale. The company’s artistic director (and former Boston Ballet prima ballerina) Edra Toth created the choreography for this show, drawing from both the novel and the Francis Ford Coppola film adaptation. The title role — which Toth designed with heavy emphasis on Dracula’s humanity rather than his fright factor — is played by UNH dance professor Assaf Benchetrit.  

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