Ever since I decided to attend Tulane the fall of my Senior year, I’ve gotten comments about Mardi Gras—more specifically, every person I knew, and even those I didn’t, claiming a spot in my room to visit. Mardi Gras is often seen as New Orleans “thing,” what we are known for, what make New Orleans, NOLA. Often put in the shadow of Mardi Gras is another amazing holiday that NOLA celebrates to a great extent, and it’s right around the corner. We do Halloween big here in NOLA. The following tips are going to show those of you who are new here, or those of you who have never taken advantage of all we have to offer, how to do Halloween New Orleans style.
What screams Halloween more than a haunted house? A haunted tour! 365 days a year, various companies in New Orleans offer haunted tours of cemeteries and the oh-so spooky French quarter! Although these tours are offered no matter the season, what could be a more perfect time to enjoy such a tour than Halloween? It’s now or never, so jump on the web and buy tickets today! Now back to that haunted house. Unlike the haunted tours, haunted houses are seasonal in NOLA. The House of Shock and Ghost Manor are two of the best in the city. Grab a group of friends and check out these haunted houses to get you into the Halloween mood.
PHOTO: HOUSE OF SHOCK
What is Halloween if you don’t have the best costume to wear? Don’t worry, there are a handful of amazing costume shops here in New Orleans that will get you outfitted perfectly for your various events. As a kid, it was typical to have only one night of dressing up as an alter ego. Now in college, specifically in New Orleans, you have as many as three or more nights to take on another persona. Uptown Costume and Dancewear and Miss Claudia’s Vintage Clothing and Costumes are just two of many shops to get you ready for Halloweek. Of course, there is always Party City in Metairie to get any last-minute essentials.
PHOTO: UPTOWN COSTUME & DANCEWEAR
Before the craziness truly begins on Halloween night, and the days leading up to it, there are a few exciting events going on around the city to get everyone into the Halloween spirit. New Orleans is a city full of music and Halloween brings one of the city’s biggest music festivals of the year. Voodoo 2017, in City Park, will begin Friday, October 27 and ends Sunday, October 29. Headliners this year include Kendrick Lamar, The Foo Fighters, The Killers and many more. Voodoo fest is quite the experience and truly adds a whole other dimension to the New Orleans Halloween experience.
If you can’t make it to Voodoo this year, don’t fret. There are many other events going on around the city that will fill that craving for Halloween festivities. First, The Krewe of Boo is a Halloween inspired parade happening on October 21, 2017. This is the official New Orleans Halloween parade and it truly brings the holiday to life. Follow this Krewe through the French Quarter and Warehouse District to eventually end at the Convention Center. The Krewe of Boo is an example of how Halloween is celebrated NOLA style; what’s a NOLA celebration without a parade? Now go and mark the 27th and 28th in your calendars ASAP for an event called Brews and Boos, which is happening in City Park. It’s two nights of parties with “Unlimited rides, Jello shots, Scare-ousel, Costume Contest, Open Beer Bar, Snacks, TRICKS and TREATS!” The only rule is that you must be 21 years of age to enter this spooky night of fun, and if you’re not 21 this will be something to look forward to!
To round out your October festivities, you must partake in the fun on Frenchmen Street on Halloween night. It is home to one of the biggest Halloween parties in the world and most certainly will top all of your expectations. Gather up your own krewe and hit the street in your best costume. This night will prove that Halloween in the Big Easy is unlike anywhere else, and that NOLA always goes big and never goes home.