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Courtesy: Sesame Place + Stinsman Photography

The coolest Halloween drive-thru events for NYC families

Spooky fun, comin' right up! These Halloween drive-thru events are a perfect way to safely celebrate the holiday!

Written by
Danielle Valente

There's no reason to sit out on the spookiest time of the year: Fantastic Halloween drive-thru events allow little ghosts and monsters to safely revel in seasonal scream-worthy fun. 

Pack up the car, add a few Halloween songs for kids to your playlist and venture on an outing: Whether you're taking a gander at the pumpkin paradise in Skylands Stadium Jack O'Lantern Experience or saying hello to Big Bird, Elmo and friends at the Sesame Place Halloween shindig, these drive-thru Halloween experiences are the perfect addition to your October calendar.

When you're not busy checking out cool happenings, stay in with a fun scary movies for kids and don't hit the hay without a reading of our Halloween books for kids...if you dare!

Halloween drive-thru events

  • Things to do
  • City Life

Location: Warren, New Jersey

Akin to the Great Jack O'Lantern BlazeWagner Farm Arboretum's Brite Nites fundraiser puts 1,000 hand-carved jack o'lanterns on display in a variety of intricate installations. Though typically a walk-through event, the 2020 festival will be a drive-thru experience. On your journey, expect to encounter a T. rex and dragon jack o'lantern, as well as other nifty designs. This year, visitors can also expect a tribute to first responders. It'll take roughly 15-20 minutes to work your way through the grounds. Note that advanced time tickets are required. Snag your tickets online ($25 per vehicle on Wednesday, Thursday and Sunday, $30 on Friday and Saturday).

  • Travel
  • Transport & Travel

Location: Ulster Park, New York

The Headless Horseman and his creepy counterparts are toning it down for the kids this Halloween. The beloved Ulster Park attraction is gearing up for a fright-filled drive-thru experience for adults and a less-intimidating Children's Day event, which will take place Oct 11 24 from 11:30am–3pm. (Rain date is Oct 25.) Families can expect to drive through an I Spy-like Halloween game in their vehicles and encounter spooky (but fun!) characters along the way. Then they'll be able to park their cars and enjoy more fall festivities, including a maze, a haunted garden, seasonal tunes and more cool things to do. Like most Halloween events this year, reservations are required ($11.95 tickets are available online) and new safety protocols will be in place.

Sesame Place: All-New Not-Too-Spooky Halloween Drive-Thru
Courtesy: Sesame Place + Stinsman Photography

3. Sesame Place: All-New Not-Too-Spooky Halloween Drive-Thru

Location: Langhorne, Pennsylvania

Sesame Street is gearing up for an eventful (not-so) spooky season! On Tuesday and Wednesday nights this month, visitors are welcome to venture to Sesame Place for a super-cool—but not super-scary—drive-thru starting at $40 per car. Your little ones will encounter their favorite characters donned in their Halloween garb, a festive soundtrack, thousands of lights and seasonal decor adorning the greatest neighborhood out there.

4. Skylands Stadium Jack O'Lantern Experience

Location: Augusta, New Jersey

Venture through a pumpkin paradise: 5,000 hand-carved jack o'lanterns will dazzle all guests passing through the illuminating Jack O'Lantern Experience. Expect pumpkins carved into your favorite characters, animals and intricate shapes. Truly, each piece like a work of art! When you're done driving through, stick around for other seasonal fun like a petting zoo, rides and craft beer (for the moms and dads in the crowd) from 6-10pm. The event, $34 per car, is selling out quickly, so make sure to snag your spot before the spooky fun comes to an end on Nov 1. 


5. AddamsFest

Location: Westfield, New Jersey

Alrighty, let's get the bad news out of the way first, shall we? The creepy, kooky Trick or Trail drive-thru featuring your favorite spooky clan is sold out. (But do keep it in mind for 2021.) However, since the Addams never disappoint, you and your family can still enjoy drive-in experiences at AddamsFest: Check out Dudley's Drive-In on Oct 23 for a screening of the new Addams Family (2019) at 6:30pm, followed by the original Psycho at 9pm for the older and more adventurous horror fans. ($30 each.) The following Friday, stop by at 6:30pm for Hotel Transylvania. At 10pm, those 18+ can enjoy The Rocky Horror Picture Show ($40). All throughout the town, homes are decked out in spooky Halloween decor, and you can vote for your favorites: Check out the Haunt Your House 2020 Driving Guide to take in the best—and spookiest—scenes in town. If you'd like, you can ditch the car and walk through downtown and South Avenue to get a glimpse of the Wicked Windows of Westfield, a celebration of Gomez, Moritica and their gang! View a full list of AddamsFest events online

More fun for kids: Halloween events

  • Things to do

Pumpkin picking in and near New York City is at its peak, finally, and so it is time to pack up your family and head out on the road to get your gourds. Not only are these farms great places to find your perfect carving pumpkin, they offer plenty of other fall activities such as corn mazes, tractor rides and more!

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