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Beware, October in Albany brews up tales of spine-chilling spirits, historic hauntings and frightening folklore. Whether you desire an immersive walk-through experience or a ghostly guided tour, Albany County offers a variety of ways to enjoy the most haunted time of year. Scroll on for the details about how to get in on the hocus pocus.
City Séance Ghost Tour
Varying dates between October 4 and October 27
Roam the streets of the capital city with theREP and Discover Albany's Maeve McEneny-Johnson, your guide into the ghostly history that lurks in the nooks and crannies of the Capital Region. Together, we’ll cross the veil in search of historic Albany specters like Legs Diamond and his flamboyant paramour Kiki Roberts or the cursed couple who shared Lincoln's ill-fated theatre box - Henry and Clara Rathbone. We may even encounter other nameless specters, who have been known to appear without introduction.
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New York State Capitol Hauntings Tour
Varying dates between October 4 and October 31
The popular Capitol Hauntings Tour returns! If you dare, dive into the urban legends and famous hauntings connected to the historic New York State Capitol Building on this eerie guided tour. Tour guides regale brave guests with spine-chilling tales about the "lost" Capitol murals and their eccentric artist, two United States Presidents who visited the Capitol after they died, and a secret demon carved into stone with a Capitol curse. Keep an ear out for jangling keys and locking doors! These mysterious sounds are often attributed to the spirit of the nightwatchman still making his nightly rounds. The tour is free, but registration is required.
The Dark Side of Downtown
Varying dates between October 6 and October 26
Embark on a sinister tour exploring the "Dark Side of Downtown." This guided tour will delve into the stories behind the buildings you see every day in the downtown area of Albany. Peel back layers of history to discover tales of true crime, local lore, and murderous mysteries. Follow in the footsteps of the infamous Silent Stalker, and uncover the stories previously told only in lost newspapers and hushed whispers. Find out more about the Dark Side of this historic neighborhood, including the assassination attempt of Albany’s Halloween Queen and the best spectator’s view of the notorious Gallows Hill. Tickets are expected to sell out quickly for this guided tour with Historic Albany Foundation and Discover Albany. Tours meet at McGeary's Irish Pub unless otherwise noted.
Murder at Cherry Hill
Wednesday to Saturday from October 12 to October 28
Trace the footsteps of a murderer at Historic Cherry Hill this October. Murder at Cherry Hill, a popular historic walk-through experience, returns! Step back in time to May 7, 1827, and relive the night of a frightening murder that resulted in Albany's last public hanging and two sensational trials. Murder at Cherry Hill tends to sell out faster than you can say "BOO!", so purchase your tickets today!
Stories and Spirits at the Shaker Cemetery
October 11, 15, 19, and 24
Join the Shaker Heritage Society for a special tour of the cemetery. The stones are identical, but the stories are not. While Shaker cemeteries are modest by design, they are the resting place of some of the most innovative, creative, and radical figures of the 18th and 19th century. This special October tour led by Shaker Heritage staff engages visitors to explore the Shaker Cemetery and uncover the stories of this unique religious and social movement, recognized as the most successful communal society in the US. Mother Ann Lee and other Shaker leaders are buried at the cemetery, which was established in 1785.
Eerie Albany Historic Ghost Tours
October 15, 22, and 29
If you dare, embark on the Eerie Albany Historic Ghost Tour! This guided walking tour through historic downtown Albany is not made for the faint of heart. Your tour guide will regale you with spine-chilling stories about the mysteries surrounding the enchanting homes lining Ten Broeck Triangle and the ghostly figure lingering past closing time at the historic Olde English Pub.
Elliot and Schlemowitz's Phantasmagoria
Travel back in time at the historic Schuyler Mansion and experience a magic-lantern show straight from the late 1700's. Elliot and Schlemowitz's Phantasmagoria draws inspiration from 18th-century Fantasmagorie shows featuring a rear projected image and magic lanterns moved to give the illusion of ghosts, goblins, and other frightening creatures floating in air. A haunted graveyard, witches, devils and other spirits appear in this magical outdoor presentation.
The Rathbones of Albany: The Tragic Story of John Wilkes Booth's Last Victims
Uncover the tragic yet true local story of Clara and Henry Rathbone who sat witness to the Lincoln Assassination as they were his guests at Ford Theatre that night. Learn of the Cottage in Loudonville where apparitions are said to have appeared. Meet at Albany Rural Cemetery.
Haunted Tales from the Crow's Wood
Gather around the campfire at the Crailo State Historic Site's Riverside Park to hear haunted tales like those of the 18th century used to tell. Enjoy mulled cider and donuts during this ghostly evening. Younger children and those of the faint of heart are welcome to join in on the fun at the pumpkin painting station that will be set aside.
Psychic-Medium Michele Lyons Polito
Join local psychic medium and ghost rescuer Michele Lyons Polito on a tour of the historic Albany Rural Cemetery. Learn local history and hauntings, visit a number of graves and tombs where Michele will share the history of those who rest there and connect with their spirits to share their stories.
Spooky Lantern Walk at the Pine Hollow Arboretum
During this family-friendly, slightly spooky lantern-lit walk through the Pine Hollow Arboretum, learn about nocturnal animals such as bats and owls that often come to mind during the Halloween season.
The Haunted Hall presented by The Cohoes Paranormal Society
This Halloween learn what spirits and paranormal creatures have been detected within the walls of this historic building famously known to be haunted by Eva Tanguay. For the past year, the Cohoes Paranormal Society have investigated this location; on the 31st they will share their findings followed by a screening of the iconic Paranormal Activity.