Sure, you can head outside the city for some Halloween-themed fun if you’re willing to travel. But you can also celebrate spooky season without ever leaving Philly.
As with everything else, Halloween is looking a little different this year, and you’ll of course want to take coronavirus mitigation precautions like social distancing and wearing your mask if you decide to go anywhere. Philly has plenty of options, though, so at least you won’t have to go far.
Here, we’ve rounded up 10 Halloween attractions to help you celebrate the holiday, ranging from the kid-friendly to the possibly paranormal. Check out the list below.
This annual pop-up bar from Teddy Sourias and Craft Concepts Group is back for 2021′s spooky season. Check it out for plenty of Halloween-themed drinks, plus a creepy ambiance thanks to a haunted house-like, asylum-themed vibe, as well as food from the recently opened Sueño next door.
Costumes are encouraged at this Halloween event from the Franklin Institute. So don your best getup (don’t forget your mask), and head on down for museum-wide trick-or-treating, buggy visitors from the Insectarium, eye and heart dissections, and other new spooky live science displays from Dr. Franklinstein and her science sidekicks.
If you want to hit the (mini) links while getting a good scare, Franklin Square has you covered. Its 18-hole mini-golf course has taken on a spooky season theme, complete with cobwebs, lights, fog, and other ghoulish, Halloween-y surprises. Good luck keeping it under par. When going with a group, be sure to buy your tickets in the same transaction in order to play alongside each other.
The Mütter Museum’s collection of historical medical items and specimens is creepy enough, but the museum has kicked it up a notch this season with after-hours pop-up events. Among them: An exclusive screening of the classic film Vampyr accompanied by a live score from Not-So-Silent Cinema.
After a one-year hiatus, Eastern State Penitentiary is once again celebrating Halloween — just a little differently than its Terror Behind the Walls haunted house. Halloween Nights at Eastern State Penitentiary promises 15 spooky attractions of all different scare levels, including new options for kids. Make your way through three live performance areas, four themed bars and lounges, three immersive (not scary) walkthrough experiences, and two (scary) haunted houses. Be sure to bring a mask, as all visitors are required to wear a mask indoors regardless of vaccination status.
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Face masks are required for this hour-long tour, which probably hits closer to home this year than any other. The topic: Philadelphia’s ghastly history of infection, inoculation, bloodletting, yellow fever, and smallpox during the 18th century. Plus, you’ll head inside the historic house for a few more frights. Tours are held rain or shine, so don’t forget to bring rain gear for the outdoor portion of the tour.
Head to the Philadelphia Zoo in costume for Boo at the Zoo, the zoo’s annual family-friendly Halloween celebration. Take in the animals and exhibits, all with festive fall offerings, and receive a free candy bag at different touch-free stations for the kids (and remember to wear your mask and social distance).
It’s been 20-plus years for this classic haunt, which operates out of a 25,000-square-foot, 120-year-old factory in South Philly. Check out three scary themed areas (none of which are family friendly), and try your best to make it out. COVID-19 precautions, including mask-wearing and social distancing, are in effect.
Some say that Fort Mifflin is among the most haunted places in the country, but you can find out yourself on its Candlelight Ghost Tour — if you dare. At three-fourths of a mile, the tour will lead you through the fort, which dates back to 1771, for what is bound to be a particularly paranormal evening.
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If you’re looking for a Halloween celebration that’s kid-friendly, head to Morris Arboretum for its annual Scarecrow Walk. This is its 14th year running, and the walk features lots of custom-made, hero-themed scarecrows throughout the garden grounds. And you can even vote for your favorite.
Steven White contributed to this article.