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Halloween Events on the Hill

It’s Halloween season, you can feel it in the air! And nobody does it better than Capitol Hill.

The Hill LOVES Halloween! People come from all over the District to join in the celebrations –some have even bussed in to enjoy the spooky decorations down every street and historic ambiance. Not to mention the short distance between doorsteps to trick or treat!

There is fun, decoration and activities all over the Hill, from the annual Hilloween event to the DC Public Libraries.

So, if you’re looking for events to celebrate one of the Hill’s favorite days, look out below! Check back often, as this list is constantly updating as we learn about more events.

We want to include you! If you have an event to add to this list, please email the details to Liz@HillRag.com

Troop 500 Scouts unload pumpkins at last year’s sale. Courtesy: D. Voss

THIS WEEKEND (Oct. 20-22)

Friday Oct. 20- Sunday Oct. 22 | Troop 500 Annual Pumpkin Sale | Lutheran Church of the Reformation (212 E Capitol St. NE) | cost varies

Come by the annual Troop 500 Pumpkin Sale and Coat Drive, a Capitol Hill tradition! Hours are Friday 5PM to 7PM, Saturday 9AM to 7PM, and Sunday 9AM to 2PM, in front of the Lutheran Church at 212 East Capitol St NE.

The funds raised help support the boys and girls of Troop 500 throughout the year for campouts, equipment, service projects, donations, and other activities. Please consider bringing a new or gently used winter coat, hats, scarves, and mittens to donate, and canned goods/nonperishable items to fill the nearby Blessing Box.

FRIDAY Oct. 20

Oct. 20 6:30 p.m. | MPD Halloween Movie Night: Hotel Transluvania 4: Transformania | Yards Park Great Lawn | Free

Join MPD and ANC 8F for a Halloween Movie Night. Bring blankets, popcorn and get ready to be entertained with a spookatacular showing of the fourth Hotel Transylvania movie. After an experiment, Johnny turns into a monster —and everyone else becomes human. Can they reverse this situation and get the monsters back to their scary selves? PG, 1h 27m

Sunday, Oct. 22

Oct. 22, 1-3 p.m. | Paint Your Own Ceramic Sugar Skull | Steadfast Supply (301 Tingey St. SW, enter on Water St) Tickets $65

Unleash your inner artist and bring a ceramic sugar skull to life with vibrant colors and unique designs.

No experience is necessary. Talented instructors will guide you through the process step by step. Bring your friends, family, or come solo and meet new people who share your love for art.

Wednesday Oct 25

Oct. 25, 5p.m. to close | Pumpkin Carving Contest at Boxcar (224 Seventh St. SE) | Free with Registration

Show your spookily good carving skills at this pumpkin carving contest at Boxcar! Pumpkins will be provided from Eastern Market vendors as well as tools and $5 Dogfish Head Punkin Ales. The winner will be announced on Halloween and will receive a $50 Gift Card to the Hill Restaurant Group (HRG), which also includes Hawk ’n’ Dove, Lola’s, Ophelia’s Fish House Playa Ocho Cantina an Stadium Sports in Navy Yard. Register to participate by stopping in, dm-ing them on instagram @boxcartavern_dc.

Image: We Happy Few

Wednesday Oct. 25, Tuesday Oct. 31 7 p.m. start (on until Nov. 18) | Kill the Ripper | We Happy Few @ CHAW | TICKETS $25 Masks required

Finally, the Feminist Victorian revenge play you’ve been waiting for.

It’s Victorian England and Jack the Ripper is on the loose. The police have very few leads as to the identity of this serial killer with a penchant for prostitutes. So what are three savvy ladies-of-the-night to do? Step one: Learn to fight. Step two: Take down Jack the Ripper themselves! This is revisionist history at it’s best: told through a feminist lens and with plenty of action. This sexy, silly, and touching play will leave you feeling empowered and ready to take on the world! More info: https://chaw.org/event/we-happy-few-presents-kill-the-ripper/

Thursday, Oct. 26

Oct. 26, 4p.m. | Pumpkinpalooza | Alethia Tanner Park | Free but Register

Join us the fun on Thursday, October 26 starting at 4 p.m. at Alethia Tanner Park for live music from Too Much Talent BandTimber Pizza food truck, costume contests for people and pets judged by DC Bouldering Project and Parker & Ace, face painting, our “pick-your-own” pumpkin patch, some special guests and costumed characters, doggie portraits,  and our annual screening of Hocus Pocus (1993). This year’s event will also feature the return of the pop-up beer garden from Red Bear Brewing Co. (21+)!

More information and register here

Halloween Weekend (Oct. 27-29)

Olaf the snowman looms over party-goers at Hilloween 2019. Photo: Sarah Cymrot

Friday, Oct. 27

Oct. 27 5-8 p.m. | Hill-O.Ween | Eastern Market (200 block Seventh Street SE and in North Hall) | Free

It’s the Hill’s largest Halloween event! Featuring free trick or treating event for all, blues face painting, kid friendly entertainment, pumpkin decorating, photo booths, karaoke and many more fun Halloween themed activities for the family and the kids. See HilloweendDC.com for updates or Facebook.com/HilloweenatEasternMarket for more details.

NOTE: Seventh Street SE between C Street and North Carolina Avenue SE will be closed to cars from about noon to 10 p.m. the day of the event.

Oct. 27, 5:30 p.m. | HALLOWEEN PARTY at King-Greenleaf Rec Center (201 N St. SW)

Youth ages 13 and under will enjoy a safe and fun place to listen to music, play games, and receive candy from DC DPR.

Oct. 27, 7p.m. | Halloweekend Movie Night: Hocus Pocus | Audi Field | Free but Register

The Capitol Riverfront BID transforms the big-screen on the Audi Field into a Halloween Haven. Have a ghoulishly good time watching Hocus Pocus (1993, with Bette Midler and Sarah Jessica Parker; PG, 1h36m).

The family-friendly experience will begin at 7 p.m. on Friday, October 27, with gates opening at 6p.m. Audi Field will offer concessions for purchase during each movie.

Tickets are general admission both on the pitch and in the stands. Access to the pitch is limited on a first-come, first-served basis. Note: Audi Field Bag Policy

Oct. 27, 7:30 p.m. & Oct. 28, 7:30 p.m.   | Capitol City Circus School’s Monster Mash | Advance Tickets $25-$50

Capitol City Circus School presents its inaugural staff show, MONSTER MASH. The spooktacular event features performances by the school’s talented staff members for two unforgettable evenings under the big white circus tent! Professional trapeze artists, acrobats, jugglers, handstand artists, and aerialists will provide thrills and excitement for all ages, during this family-friendly Halloween event. Seating for this event is first-come, first-served.

Saturday, Oct. 28

Serious pumpkin decorating at Payne Fall Fest 2019.

Elementary Fall Fests!

Oct 28, 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. | Maury Elementary Fall Festival | Tickets $1-$25, online & on site

Maury’s festival includes food, music, haunted house, crafts, face painting, carnival games, musical cake walk, and a chance to silly string the Principal. There’s also a bouncy house for those in Kindergarten and under.
You can buy bracelets in advance for $25 (or $30 at the door), which includes a food ticket (breakfast or lunch options), face painting, unlimited haunted house and games, a craft, 3 turns at musical cake walk and 1 entry to a raffle to silly string Principal Hassler, Ms. Mina or Ms. Bomba. Individual tickets for activities are also available for sale on-line and at the event for $1 each. ONLINE SALES will end at 8pm on Friday Oct 27. Bracelets and tickets can still be bought at the door. More info and tickets: https://mauryele.ejoinme.org/FallFestival2023

Oct. 28, 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. | Payne Elementary Fall Festival | 1445 C St. SE | $5 entry

Payne’s Fall Fest is Saturday, Oct 28 from 11a – 2p! Enjoy the costume parade, bouncy house and a Scholastic book fair! There will also be games and a raffle with BIG PRIZES! Plus, appearances from local celebrities including Wendy the DC Water drop and the manager of HoneyMade DC! All to support your neighborhood school.

Oct. 28, 11a.m. to 3 p.m. | Tyler/Chisholm Elementary Fall Fest | Tyler/Chisholm Pavillion (1001 G St. SE) | Free Entry

The Hill’s bilingual arts elementary celebrates fall with Bouncy Castles! Cotton Candy! Pumpkins! Games! Costumes are very encouraged.

Other Fun Oct. 28

Oct. 28, 10 a.m. – 4 p.m. | 1 pm Dog Costume Contest + All-Day Crafts at Relume | 760 C St. SE | Entry free but RSVP; costs vary for crafts

Come join the makery at Relume (near Eastern Market) for a spooktacular Halloween event. Get ready for a frightfully fun evening filled with tricks, treats, and ghoulish crafts. The haunted venue will be decked out in eerie decorations, creating the perfect atmosphere for a chillingly good time. RVSP to reserve your spot – entry is free; costs vary by craft. Doggie costume contest: 1 PM | DIY Halloween Accessory Bar: 10 AM – 4 PM

Oct. 28, 12 p.m. – 4 p.m. | Halloween PAWty: Tricks for Treats | Steadfast Supply (301 Tingey St. Sw, enter on Water St) | Free

Join a spooktacular trick-or-treat event for dogs and kids of all ages! There will be trick-or-treating for dogs and kids, a photo booth and a dog costume contest. Two dogs will have a chance to win a $25 gift certificate to the shop!

Bring pups in costumes and get their photo taken.  The winner will announced on Instagram on Halloween day!

Oct. 28, 11a.m.-2p.m. | Pumpkins in The Park | Canal Park (200 M St. SE) | Free

It’s the 10th annual Pumpkins in the Park featuring seasonal festivities from pumpkin decorating (while supplies last), a giant moon bounce and a mobile photo booth. Celebrate with live music by popular local Zydeco band Little Red & the Renegades, a roaming magician, and seasonal beverages* for purchase.

The first 150 registered guests to arrive will receive a free seasonal beverage (alcoholic and non-alcoholic options available) and a fresh apple cider donut courtesy of the BID! More info: capitolriverfront.org


Oct. 28, 4p.m. | Hill Family Biking Costume Halloween Ride | Start at Maury Elementary 12th Place Lot (1250 Constitution Ave. NE)

Starting at Maury Elementary Parking Lot on 12th Pl NE, the route to this Halloween ride will be a mystery until the day it happens! Organizers will be using the Spooky Hill is Home map to ride the scariest blocks on the Hill. You can contribute to that map here.

The ride will end at Lincoln Park for some spooky fun including a costume contest with prized donated by The Daily Rider. There are ten categories:

  • Scariest, Funniest, Transportation-themed, Bike-themed, Family, Group, Brightest, Biggest, Movie-themed and Animal

Volunteers will be marshals to ensure the group stays together. MPD bike team will also be participating in the ride to connect officers with the community.

If your family’s bikes need some TLC, please come 15 minutes early to get some assistance–there will be bike maintenance tools available, as well as some experienced amateur bike mechanics on hand to assist.

Sat. Oct. 28, 4 p.m. to 1 a.m. | Fight Club’s Ghoulish Gathering & Costume Contest | Fight Club (633 Pennsylvania Ave. SE)

Fight Club promises the spookiest party of the year. DJ Daniel will spin a full-on monster mash from 8p… to midnight, but there will be party games and prizes, a costume contest and movies all day long.

Oct. 28, 8:30 p.m. | Nightmare in Navy Yard Dance Party | Capital Turnaround (770 M St. SE) | Tickets $45-85

Nightmare in Navy Yard is DC’s biggest Halloween dance party. Produced by Scorpio Entertainment and Party DC, this year’s event features 2 DJs, a 5-hour open bar, food trucks, animatronics, haunted props, special FX lighting, lasers and more. More info: https://nightmareinnavyyard.com/

Monday, Oct. 30

Oct 30, 5-6p.m. | Middle Grade Book Club – Scary Story Edition |Southwest Neighborhood Library – Meeting Room 1 (20-40 Person Capacity)

Best for kids 5 – 12 years old, this special edition of the MS Book Club will celebrate Halloween with a spooky story.

Oct. 30, 4-6 p.m. | HALLOWEEN TOWN at AUTHUR CAPPER | Arthur Capper Community Center (1000 Fifth St. SE) | FREE

Come out for some SPOOKY FUN with the DC Department of Parks and Recreation (DPR). Children will dress up in costumes, enjoy music, play games and receive candy and snacks.

Oct. 30, 6-8:30 p.m. | SPOOKY SPIRIT FREE BEVS & CREEPY BROADWAY TUNES | Crazy Aunt Helen’s (713 Eighth St. SE) |

In honor of Spooky Season, see the Chameleon Theater Collective in a fun-filled Halloween evening full of your favorite creepy Broadway tunes. Enjoy tunes from Wicked, Phantom of the Opera, Sweeney Todd, Heathers, and so much more! For more information, visit https://www.crazyaunthelens.com/

Rev. Kevin Vandiver is ready to hand out hot dogs and candy at Reformation Church Oct. 31 from 5:30-7:30p. Courtesy: Reformation DC

Tuesday Oct. 31 HALLOWEEN

3:30-5:30 p.m. Oct. 31 | Halloween Party at Southeast Library | SE Library (403 Seventh St SE, meeting room) | Free, Ages 5-12.

Join the library for a spooky celebration full of tricks, activities and treats! Children should be accompanied by an adult.

5:30-7:30 p.m. Oct. 31 | Halloween Fun & Food at Lutheran Church of the Reformation | 212 E Capitol St. NE
Reformation is giving out candy, hot dogs, and drinks on Halloween from 5:30 to 7:30 p.m. Come out to hear creepy organ music in a foggy, fun-filled atmosphere! Want to “bat” somethign back and forth? They will have ping pong tables out, too! 
The church is located right across the street from the Folger Shakespeare Library.

Tuesday, Oct. 31 | 6 p.m. to 9 p.m. [varies] | Trick or Treating | Halloween |

Trick or treating on Capitol Hill always happens on Halloween, no matter what day of the week it is. This year, Halloween falls on a Tuesday — a school night, so it could begin and end on the earlier side.

The evening starts with the littlest trick-or-treaters, often toddlers, ringing doorbells on their streets as early as 5:30, with the elementary set coming out starting around 6 or 6:30p.m. Trick or treating mostly starts winding down around 8-8:30p.m., although you might get a few middle-schoolers and families until 9-9:30p.m. –if you still have candy.

If you’re new to the Hill, know that the area is a popular destination for area trick-or-treaters from all over the DMV. Those who live on major streets can expect hundreds or upwards of a thousand of visitors: Houses on the relatively busy 12th Street SE will hand out 700 pieces of candy in three hours; houses on East Capitol could meet thousands of trick or treaters. However, side streets away from hot spots might see only 100 or fewer kids. If you’re new to your street, ask your neighbors to get a more exact forecase.

Some folks sit on their front steps with a beverage and a bowl of candy, not bothering to go inside because trick or treaters often come in a parade. If you are handing out treats, you’ll be popular, so be ready. When you’re done, turn off your lights and consider hanging a sign saying “out of candy” on your gate or doorway.

Streets known for their decorations include East Capitol Street near Lincoln Park and Walter Street SE, which often closes to vehicles for the night.

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