So earlier in the week I challenged members of The Blogenning to do/eat/play/create/watch/verb something new.
My new thing: a trip to Salem, MA, which is typically known known as “The Witch Capital of the World”. For those of you unaware, a series of accusations and trials occurred between 1692 and 1693 resulting in a number of deaths. While trials for witchcraft weren’t completely uncommon in Europe or Colonial America, the Salem Witch Trials marked an atypical concentration, with over 150 people arrested and held on the words of neighbors. Roughly 30 were convicted of either being a witch or supporting witchcraft and the vast majority of them were dead before the Governor stepped in.
And now during the month of October, Salem conducts “Haunted Happening”, becoming the Halloween center of New England, if not the entire country. Promoting healthy family-friendly fun and tolerance, there are a number of Museums, attractions, and events. I was lucky enough to have some friends free for the day, so we all went together. Wax statues, carnival food, a haunted “Frankenstein’s Lab”, a candlelit tour of the haunted sites and graveyard, and kitchy souvenirs – what more could you ask for?! Well, except for the graves of the actual accused witches – but no one knows where those are. Instead you have The Burying Point, the 2nd oldest graveyard in the United States.
If you’re interested in visiting Salem for the amazing atmosphere, my only pieces of advice would be these:
1: Try not to go on Halloween weekend. I know that sounds counter-intuitive, but there has been an increase in drunken buffoonery the last few years, resulting in a large law enforcement presence and a 10:30pm curfew for Halloween night (streets close, but indoor celebrations continue). It’s also crazy busy with revelers, which I personally dislike.
2: Don’t be discouraged if you don’t have much of a budget – there’s plenty of fun to be had on the cheap.
3: Take public transportation. There’s a ferry, which is fun, but the train is faster, cheaper, and more frequent. Besides, you never know who might be driving.
And, of course, the most important thing is to have fun!