Celebrate Halloween in true haunted stye with a stay or visit to America’s Most Haunted Hotel, the historic Crescent Hotel, built in 1886 and perched on a hilltop overlooking the picturesque town of Eureka Springs, Arkansas.
1886 Crescent Hotel | Photo credit: Harrison Sutcliffe Photography
Imagine a quirky village in Northwest Arkansas as ground zero for Halloween! This storied Victorian-era town (which happens to be my hometown) claims to “deliver more thrills and chills per square mile than any other town in America.”
The popular Crescent Hotel ghost tour starts on the top floor of the building and works its way down to the basement, where you’ll find the morgue of the notorious Dr. Baker from the years 1937-39 when the building served as his cancer hospital. As a teenager, I worked summers at the hotel and we thrilled at the tales of sightings of the mystery woman in a white dress flitting about the hallway in the basement.
Famous spirits at the Crescent include Michael, the Irish stonemason who fell to his death while building the hotel in 1885; Theodora, the cancer patient of the Dr. Baker who seems to need help finding her room key; and a mystery patient in a white nightgown who appears at the foot of your bed in the luxury suites. These tours are scheduled nightly in October from 6 p.m. to 10 p.m., and until 11 p.m. on Oct. 31. Tours are about 75 minutes in length. For more information and to buy tickets, visit America’s Most Haunted Hotel website.
Spooky fun includes ghost tours, haunted theatrical shows, zombie parade, cemetery tours, séances, haunted hotels, and more.
“[The events are] a little more on the sophisticated side,” says Sean-Paul, creator of Intrigue Theater, a Vaudeville-era show of magic and mystery. “It’s ghost tours and haunted shows, not just a bunch of dark rooms with people jumping out at you.”
Illusionist Sean-Paul and Medium Juliane Fay, through their show Intrigue Theater, take guests back in time for a Victorian, turn-of-the-century experience in traditional mentalist performances like those seen in the movies The Illusionist and The Prestige. “We always strive to portray that era,” Sean-Paul explains.
“Our Intrigue Theatre show will be the regular show through the month of October but using some Halloween segments within it,” Sean-Paul explains. A special Intrigue Theatre show on Oct. 28 will include a witch trial hanging for Juliane. Actual Halloween night still has a special feature – Sean-Paul and Juliane will hold a séance during a three-course dinner at The Crescent Hotel, complete with paranormal experiments between entrees and a final one after dinner. Seating is limited to 75 people. For more information and to buy tickets visit the Intrigue Theatre website.
Visitors can also enjoy Basin Spirit Tours at Basin Park Hotel in the heart of downtown. This guided ghost hunt begins on the roof of the eight-story hotel and proceeds in stages to an underground cave. It ends with a chilling ghost story told by candlelight, plus a sample of spirits of a different kind for those 21 years of age and older. For more information, visit Spirits of the Basin website.
For a more historical experience, check out Voices of the Silent City and Haunted Eureka Springs Ghost Tours. In the former, costumed Eureka Springs residents play the roles of some of the citizens of the town now buried in the cemetery, where the living history presentations take place. Voices of the Silent City takes place from 5:30 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. on Oct. 19, 20, 21, 27 and 28. The Haunted Eureka tours involve both a shuttle bus and some walking to explore more of the town’s haunted locations. It takes places every night of October. Sign up for the 7 p.m. or 8 p.m. tour.
Other fun options include The Downtown Underground tours, Escape Room 13, and Flickering Tales.
Since Halloween is on a Tuesday this year, Saturday, Oct. 28th has been designated the big night of fun. In addition to the annual Intrigue Theatre Halloween show at the Eureka Springs Auditorium, there will be a Zombie crawl (parade) at 6 p.m. followed by a Thriller Flash Mob Dance and a costume party at Upstairs at the Grotto.
Details and ticket information for all of the events can be found at www.TheHalloweenCity.com.
Halloween parade – the yarn people always add color, energy and fun!
October is always a beautiful time to be in Eureka Springs and explore the Ozarks because of the great weather and gorgeous fall foliage. For more information on things to do and places to stay, visit www.EurekaSprings.org.
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