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Parks in the Dark: Spooky events this Halloween

Photo of: Lantern-lit tour outside the building

Spirits of the Furnace tour; by Alicia Norris

By day, Maryland State Parks are showing off their vibrant views and welcoming visitors with every cozy comfort the season brings. Cabin stays, harvest crafts, hayrides, pumpkin patches, warm cider. We’ll get to that with the next article, but first, let’s take a look at what some of our parks are up to when the sun goes down and the ghouls come out.

The Legend of Sleepy Hollow
Gunpowder Falls, Harford County

A magical fall celebration transforms the historic village at Jerusalem Village into Sleepy Hollow. Come and hike our family-friendly haunted trail—spooky, but not horrifying—get your face painted, make a scarecrow, play games and listen to music.

Date: Oct. 21 | Time: Noon-8 p.m.
Cost: $10/person (for craft)
Register: 410-877-3560

Spirits of the Furnace
Cunningham Falls, Frederick County

Ghostly guides will take you on a night hike through the haunted trails to the historic Catoctin Iron Furnace. Costumed spirits will make frequent stops along the way to tell old folklore of Frederick’s past.

Hikes will take approximately a half-hour and cover some rocky terrain and steep steps. After the hike, a van will take guests to the Visitor Center to enjoy apple cider and s’mores by the campfire. The museum will also be open for viewing.

Wear warm clothing and shoes appropriate for hiking, and bring a flashlight. This hike may not be appropriate for young children and does not accommodate strollers or wheelchairs.

Date: Oct. 21 | Time: 7-9:30 p.m.
Cost: $5/adult (13 & up), $3/child (7-12)
Register: 301-271-3676

Haunted History Hike
Soldiers Delight, Baltimore County

Are you afraid of the dark? We hope not! Follow a ghostly guide by lantern light through the park while listening to ghostly tales of local lore. Among the sites is Berry’s Hill, where the state’s first instance of capital punishment took place in 1752. 

Other stories include those of tommy knockers at Choate Mine and Civil War soldiers stationed at Gravity Hill.

Wear closed-toed shoes and bring a flashlight with you.

Additionally, on Oct. 28, our partners from Soldiers Delight Conservation Inc. host a pumpkin-carving program during the day.

Date: Oct. 20-21, 27-28 | Time: 7-10 p.m. Last tour departs at 9 p.m.
Cost: $5/person
Register: 410-922-3044


Article by Alison Woodfield—Maryland Park Service customer service manager.
Appears in Vol. 20, No. 4 of the Maryland Natural Resource magazine, fall 2017.

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