This year, Halloween is going to look different, but there is still a lot of fun to be had! We have compiled a list of some virtual and in-person ways to celebrate Halloween this year in the DMV (we have included a few Día de los Muertos events too). For more ideas on how to have some Halloween fun, check out these Halloween movies for kids, Halloween craft ideas, pumpkin patches, and this Halloween Game and Spooky Window Hunt. However your family decides to celebrate Halloween, we urge you to follow safety protocols required by venues and that your family works to stay safe and healthy in your communities. If you know of other virtual or in-person events to celebrate Halloween, please let us know in comments.
Air and Scare at Home
October 20th through October 31st
National Air and Space Museum at Udvar-Hazy Center
This year, the Museum’s popular Air & Scare program is coming to your home with online downloadable activities and challenges, live digital programming, and some sc-air-y business, including a costume and pumpkin decorating contest for sweet prizes.
Halloween Scavenger Hunt and Contests
October 23rd – October 31st
Del Ray Neighborhood, Alexandria VA
Del Ray’s favorite Halloween traditions are moving online, with contests for Best Decorated House, Best Decorated Business, Best Decorated Block, Best Group Costume and Best Pet Costume, plus a Halloween Scavenger Hunt on the Avenue, taking place Halloween week.
Hallow-Scream Scavenger Hunt
October 23rd – November 1st
Falls Church, VA
The City of Falls Church Recreation and Parks Department is hosting a free Hallow-Scream Scavenger Hunt around six parks throughout town. Each park will have one of six signs that will have a letter. Find all the signs and unscramble the letters to reveal the Hallow-Scream code word, and you’ll win a free Hallow-Scream Scavenger Hunt t-shirt! The Hallow-Scream Scavenger Hunt is geared more towards younger children, but it’s still fun for the whole family and a great way to explore different parks. Visit the event website to download a list of clues. Also, Falls Church is hosting several pop-up events that you can register for online, including Scarecrow Making, Pumpkin Painting, and Birdhouse Painting.
Halloween Storytime Aboard Tall Ship Providence
October 23rd, 25th, and 30th
Steel your nerves for a spooky Halloween Storytime aboard the Tall Ship Providence. Recommended for children ages 6-12, this haunted program will run for 25 minutes, and will give kids the opportunity to come aboard the ship, meet captain John Paul Jones, and hear a tale of high-seas terror. All children will recieve a small gift-bag of treats from our treasure chest. Let’s get in the Halloween spirit; costumes are encouraged! This year’s story will be “Somebody Fell from Aloft,” by Alvin Schwartz. Check out the event website to purchase tickets and review COVID-19 safety protocols.
10am – 4pm
Enjoy some safe and seasonal fun with the family in the garden of the Lee-Fendall House during its Fall Frolic! Put on your Halloween costumes on Saturday, October 24 for crafts, a ghost hunt, a Trick-or-Treat walk, and more! Sessions start at every hour from 10am to 4pm. Timed tickets must be purchased in advance. Only 10 participating children per session, plus accompanying family members, face masks are required.
Pumpkins in the Park
12pm – 4pm
Pumpkins in the Park is back for its 7th year, this time with a socially-distanced vibe. This neighborhood “pumpkin patch” offers the community a chance to pick their pumpkin in a safe, socially-distanced fashion (no more than 15 people in the pumpkin patch at one time) while supplies last. After selecting your pumpkin, take-home decorating kits will be available (also while supplies last) along with the option to have your pumpkin custom-painted by local artist Painted Palettes.
4pm – 5pm
Hilloween is a much loved tradition in the Capitol Hill neighborhood. For 20 years, families have gathered for fall fun, creativity, and kinship. Due to COVID-19, the event is going virtual this year. There will be live pumpkin carving, a spooky dance party, Zumba, a live DJ, a virtual costume contest, and more! Check out the event website for more information on how to participate in this spooky fun.
5pm – 8pm
College Park, MD
Collect Halloween treats while you drive through a spooky Duvall Field! Celebrate with us in your scariest or sparkliest costumes. Decorate your car in the Halloween spirit and you can win a $50 gift card to a College Park business of your choosing. Registration is required. Please visit event website to review all restrictions and protocols.
illumiNATIONS: Dia de los Muertos
6pm – 7pm
National Museum of the American Indian
Celebrate Día de los Muertos from home with this event that will be streamed live on the museum’s YouTube and Facebook pages. You will learn about monarchs butterflies, which are everywhere in Día de los Muertos celebrations, from cultural and scientific experts and enjoy the music of GRAMMY-winning East L.A. band Quetzal. Hear from sculptor and maskmaker Zarco Guerrero about the role masks play in Día de los Muertos celebrations and tour his studio in Mesa, AZ. Download your own butterfly or paper skull mask to print, decorate and wear at home. Read about this special day as a family in a book from NMAI’s recommended book list. This event is free and open to all ages. Registration is recommended to receive the online event link in advance.
Canal Park Halloween Drive-in Movie
Buzzard Point Next to Audi Field
Grab your popcorn and join the Capitol Riverfront BID for a drive-in movie to celebrate the Halloween season. The movie will be a fun, contact-free experience for all ages and will have space for 75 vehicles set at an appropriate social distance. All ticket proceeds will be donated to local charities. The movie to be shown will be determined by the public’s vote. Visit the event website to purchase tickets and submit your vote.
October 30th and 31st
Takoma Park, MD
The Takoma Park Recreation Department has created a number of events to provide families with some great, safe ways to celebrate Halloween. Families can enjoy a Virtual Magic Show and Virtual Storytelling Event. There will also be a Family Walk & Chalk and costumed Halloween Walk-Thru for families in their neighborhoods.
Día de los Muertos Virtual Weekend Celebration
October 31st and November 1st
2pm – 3pm
National Museum of the American Indian
Celebrate Día de los Muertos from home with activities for families, beautiful art, and the rich culinary heritage of this tradition. Join museum folklorist Cynthia Vidaurri as she answers frequently asked questions about Day of the Dead. Watch a demonstration of how to make paper marigolds. Join Chef Neftali Duran on his culinary journey through the foods and feasting associated with Día de los Muertos. Visit the museum’s Facebook page to view images of ofrendas from past Day of the Dead festivals at the museum, and to post messages in memory of your loved ones.