Haunting on DoG Street to return for the fourth year

Tickets are now on sale for Colonial Williamsburg’s popular “Haunting on DoG Street,” a two-week Halloween celebration which culminates in two nights of trick-or-treating and a themed pirate feast on Halloween night.

The Halloween-themed festivities kick off Oct. 15 with a series of nightly programs, including interactive witch trials and ghost tours through Colonial Williamsburg’s historic area. Robert Currie, director of entertainment for Colonial Williamsburg, said the Halloween events are meant to drive more guests towards Colonial Williamsburg’s host of evening programs, which occur daily after the historical site’s regular hours are over at 5 p.m.

“Some people don’t realize that we have a whole menu of really fun and unique evening programs here at Colonial Williamsburg, so we use that time to highlight our ghost experiences, our concerts and our trial programs as well,” he said.

Along with “Witchcraft in Colonial Virginia,” a lecture on the history of witchcraft from historian Carson Hudson Jr, event-goers can also enjoy evening programs such as “Cry Witch,” which asks attendees to vote on the guilt or innocence of “the Virginia Witch” Grace Sherwood, according to a news release from Colonial Williamsburg. Other themed evening programs will include “To Hang a Pirate,” “Escape the King” and “Monsters, Mayhem and Musick,” a nightly show blending storytelling and live music inside the Governor’s Palace, according to the release.

“If you’ve ever walked through the historic area at night, it definitely has its own atmosphere, and it can feel a little spooky,” Currie said. “You can feel the history all around you, so between all of the stories that you hear between the ghost stories and Blackbeard’s history all going into the 18th and 17th century, Halloween almost seems to fit perfectly in here.”

The Art Museums of Colonial Williamsburg also has planned events at its Hennage auditorium, including a murder mystery called “Murder or Misfortune?, The Tragic Death of Robert Routledge,” “Ethereal Love Songs” from guitarist and vocalist Kent La Rue and “Boo-Grass and More” performed by Chisman Creek. The museum will also offer Halloween-themed guided tours, according to the release.

New for the Haunting on DoG Street this year is a ghost tour for young children between the ages of 4-7 and a “pumpkin patch dance party” on the south lawn of the Capitol Building featuring live music from a band of William and Mary students, Currie said.

The biggest hit of the annual event comes toward the end of the month, however, with trick-or-treating along Duke of Gloucester Street from 5:30-7:30 p.m. Oct. 26 and 27. Currie said tickets for the event are nearly halfway sold, and he expects thousands of kids and families to attend the event each night.

“Just imagine 5,000 kids with their families walking around in costume in the historic area,” he said. “Cresset-lined streets, spooky music, pirates and witches, it’s such a fun and unique place to get dressed up and experience a trick-or-treating event like that.”

“Haunting on DoG Street” will culminate on Halloween night with “Blackbeard’s Feast” in Colonial Williamsburg’s Shields Tavern, where attendees can enjoy a buffet and dinner theater marking the 300th anniversary of Blackbeard’s death.

Ticket information, event details

Tickets for trick-or-treating are $5 per child. Children must be accompanied by an adult, and adults must register in advance and accompany a child to attend the event. Official trick-or-treat bags may be picked up on the day of at the Colonial Williamsburg Regional Visitor Center. Trick-or-treaters with food allergies can get special trick-or-treat bags and collect allergen-free treats at designated Historic Area sites.

Tickets for “Haunting on DoG Street” events can be purchased at colonialwilliamsburg.com/special-events/haunting or by calling 855-296-6627.

Evening programs:

  • “Cry Witch”: Mondays, Tuesdays and Fridays at 7:30 and 9 p.m. throughout October. Not recommended for young children.
  • “The Official Colonial Williamsburg Ghost Walk” and “Ghosts Amongst Us”: nightly at 7 and 8:30 p.m. throughout October.
  • “The Official Colonial Williamsburg Ghost Walk Junior:” 6 p.m. Thursdays-Sundays throughout October.
  • “To Hang a Pirate”: Thursdays and Saturdays.
  • “Escape the King”: Thursdays, Fridays and Saturdays.
  • “Monsters, Mayhem and Musick”: Governor’s Palace, 7:30 and 9 p.m. Oct. 16, 23 and 30. Not recommended for young children.

Special tickets are required for Colonial Williamsburg evening programs.

Art Museum events:

  • “Murder or Misfortune?, The Tragic Death of Robert Routledge”: 3:30 p.m. Oct. 15, 22 and 29.
  • “Ethereal Love Songs”: 4:30 p.m. Oct. 25.
  • “Boo-Grass and More”: 4 p.m. Oct. 27.
  • “The Wreck of the Sea Venture”: 4 p.m. Oct. 28.
  • “Ghouls, Ghosts and Gleeful Gloom!”: 4:30 p.m. Oct. 31.

Hennage Art Museum programs are included with Colonial Williamsburg or Art Museums admission with the exception of “Boo-Grass and More,” which requires an additional ticket.

Art Museum tours:

  • “In Memoriam:” 10:15 a.m. Oct. 22 and 29.
  • “Face Your Fears”: 5 p.m. Oct. 22 and 10:15 a.m. Oct. 19 and 26.
  • “Weird Wild Spooky”: 10:15 a.m. Oct. 24 and 31.

Art Museum tours are included with Colonial Williamsburg or Art Museums admission.

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