Salem, MA to Host Its First Food Truck Festival

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New England Open Markets will bring a cornucopia of food trucks to Salem Common to kick off the city’s annual Halloween celebrations with the first Salem Food Truck Festival. On October 1st and 2nd, 2016 from 11 AM to 6 PM over 25 food trucks from across New England will converge on historic Salem Common just in time for the kick-off of the month long 2016 Haunted Happenings Festival.

The City of Salem has partnered with New England Open Markets to expand the offerings in downtown Salem during this busy month-long celebration. Open Markets founder Chris Masci brings his festival/market expertise to Salem for another fantastic event that adds to the already successful roster of events that include Salem Open Market and Salem Holiday Market in Salem and many in South Boston including the highly successful Ink Block Market.

From Grilled Cheese to Poutine, from whoopie pies to cookies there is something on tap for everyone at the first food truck festival. Fan favorites Bon Me food truck, The Cookie Monstah, Roxy’s Grilled Cheese and more will be bringing a food court like no other to the heart of the city. The two day festival will also include live music and local buskers.

For more information on Salem’s first food truck festival, visit New England Open Market’s website, or find the festival on Facebook.

“Hocus Pocus” Filming Locations in Salem, MA

hocus-pocusIt might be difficult to believe that Hocus Pocus, the famed cult classic starring Bette Midler, Sarah Jessica Parker, and Kathy Najimy debuted 23 years ago, on July 16, 1993. You are probably familiar with the film’s story, which focuses on the Sanderson Sisters, who are executed as witches after casting a spell on young Thackery Binx, dooming him to roam the streets of Salem as an immortal black cat. 300 years later, a teenager named Max finds himself in the home of the Sanderson Sisters, where his lighting of the infamous black flame candle brings the trio back to life on Halloween night. Max, along with his sister Dani, and crush Allison, and Binx the cat of course, must then work together to put an end to the Sanderson Sisters once and for all.

Pioneer Village
310 West Ave | PioneerVillageSalem.org
The opening scenes of the film, featuring Binx as a human prior to his cursing as a cat, were filmed in Pioneer Village, a living history museum located at Salem’s Forest River Park. Pioneer Village was built in 1930, and is America’s first living history museum. Tours of the village are offered seasonally through September, and today the park is home to different events and festivals throughout the year.

Phillips Elementary School on Salem Common
The Phillips Elementary School building conveniently ended its run as a functioning school in 1992, making it the perfect location for a movie filming in Salem that required some exterior high school footage. While the building is not open to the public today the exterior can still be viewed from the Common.

The Ropes Mansion
318 Essex Street | PEM.org
One of the most memorable scenes in the film was when Max attends the Halloween party at Allison’s house, the exterior of which was actually filmed using one of the most prominent 18th century homes in Salem. The gardens located behind the mansion are free to visit and open to the public.

Old Town Hall
161 Essex Street | Salem.com
The other classic party scene in the film was actually filmed just a few blocks away at Old Town Hall in Derby Square. Famous in the film for Bette Midler’s rendition of “Put a Spell on You,” the building today is open to the public, and hosts the Salem Museum and performances of “Cry Innocent.”

Salem Common
Many of the outdoor scenes in the movie were filmed at Salem Common, where ironically enough the film is shown each year during Haunted Happenings. This year’s showing of Hocus Pocus on the Common will take place at 6 pm on October 29.

4 Ocean Avenue
This house on the end of Ocean Avenue was home to Max and his sister Dani in the film. While Hocus Pocus fans may view the exterior of the home from the street, please be advised that this site is PRIVATE PROPERTY and should be treated with respect.

Old Burial Hill
Orne Street, Marblehead, MA | OldBurialHill.org
The day-time cemetery scenes showing Max interacting with his new, not-so-welcoming classmates actually were not filmed in Salem at all. This footage was shot in nearby Marblehead at Old Burial Hill, one of the oldest graveyards in New England.

Count Orlok’s Nightmare Gallery
285 Derby Street | NightmareGallery.com
While this museum was not featured in the filming for Hocus Pocus, it is home to an impressive figure of Winifred Sanderson, portrayed in the film by Bette Midler. Count Orlok’s is located at 285 Derby Street and is open as a museum and haunted house throughout October.

Do have a good time visiting some of the locations from this classic film, but please don’t “run amok!”

October at The House of the Seven Gables

Secret Staircase House of the Seven Gables Salem MA

Hanging judges, cursed colonels, haunted hallways:
Bring a friend and hang on!

Secret Staircase House of the Seven Gables Salem MA

The Secret Staircase

For those who like a little fact with their fright, a little history with their hi-jinx, head for The House of the Seven Gables in October where truth is always stranger than fiction. On select weekend nights, two original theatrical events are staged in The House of the Seven Gables and the Nathaniel Hawthorne Birthplace. Each performance lasts 35 minutes and they begin every 5 or 10 minutes between 8 and 10:30 p.m. (7 and 9 p.m. on October 31). Tickets for individual shows or combination tickets for both performances are available. During the day, tours tip gently toward the dark side as visitors brave the Secret Staircase and marvel at a way of life long since passed. Daytime hours at The Gables are 10 a.m. to 7 p.m.

Theatrical performances

Legacy of the Hanging Judge
In 1692 the Salem Witch Trials wrought havoc on a small New England community. “Legacy of the Hanging Judge” replays the events in the words of those who lived through the harrowing times —and those who did not fare as well. The performances take place in Nathaniel Hawthorne’s birth house. Prepare to be interrogated by magistrate John Hathorne, Nathaniel Hawthorne’s great-great grandfather, infamous for his role in the condemnation and deaths of accused witches. Encounter the tormented, the accused and their accusers in this interactive theatrical experience. Beware. You may find yourself accused of “writing in the devil’s book!”

October 7, 8, 9, 14, 15, 21, 22, 28, and 29 from 8 to 10:30 p.m.
October 31 from 7 to 9 p.m.
Performances begin every ten minutes in The Nathaniel Hawthorne birth house and last approximately 35 minutes. Last performance begins at closing. Advance ticket purchase highly recommended. Visit 7gables.org for information and tickets.

Spirits of the Gables
Guilt! Greed! Revenge! Step into the world of Nathaniel Hawthorne’s “House of the Seven Gables.” Watch as his troubled characters haunt the mansion’s halls, entangled in a family curse. Matthew Maule condemns Colonel Pyncheon with words that become his fate — “God will give you blood to drink!” Creep through The Gables at your own risk, for as long as there is a Pyncheon descendant inside, legend has it, only darkness and death will fill its walls.

October 7, 8, 9, 14, 15, 21, 22, 28, and 29 from 8 to 10:30 p.m.
October 31 from 7 to 9 p.m.
Performances begin every five minutes in The House of the Seven Gables and last approximately 35 minutes. Last performance begins at closing. Advance ticket purchase highly recommended. Visit 7gables.org for information and tickets

Rates
Tickets for each of the plays is $15 or $28 for a combination ticket. The combination ticket is available for any two performances on the same evening. Advance ticket purchase highly recommended. Visit 7gables.org for information and tickets.

Photo Contest Pick of August

Bakers Island Lighthouse. Photo credit: Logan Goodwin

Congratulations to Logan Goodwin for winning our “Pick of the Month” for August!

Bakers Island Lighthouse. Photo credit: Logan Goodwin

Bakers Island Lighthouse. Photo credit: Logan Goodwin

Logan’s picture of Bakers Island Light makes us sad the summer season has ended.  If you are looking for an adventure, check in with Essex Heritage and add a boat ride to Bakers Island to your summer list!

Do you have a memorable shot of Salem? Submit it to our Photo Contest and you could win a wonderful prize!

Salem Spice Festival Returns to Pioneer Village September 10 & 11

Salem MA Salem Spice Festival Gingerbread Salem MA Spice Festival. Photo credit: Creative Salem

Come celebrate nearly four centuries of Salem’s history with spices, herbs and tea in America’s first living history museum, Pioneer Village: Salem 1630. There will be exhibits, recipes, crafts, talks, demonstrations, music, food, storytelling and activities for children.

Admission is free but a suggested donation of $5.00 to Pioneer Village will happily be accepted. Salem Trolley is providing shuttle service to Pioneer Village for $5.00 round trip on Saturday, September 10th and Sunday, September 11th. For more information on the festival and for specific times and locations to catch the Salem Trolley please visit salemspicefest.com.

2016 Vendor List
Artemisia Botanicals, Atlantic Saltworks, Bambolina, Black Cat Tours, Comida, Copper Treez, Coven’s Cottage, Derby Square Tours, Desert Rose, Ed and Sons Popcorn Wagon, Green Witch School of Herbalism, Hervor Soaps, IFarm, Kristin Jay, K’s Kitchen, Mama Kyries Magickal Curiosities, Monarch Gardner, Perceptive Charm, Red Biddy Skincare, Remember Salem, Salem Canvas, Salem Food Tours, Salem Spice, Salem Trolley, Starbucks, Wynott’s Wands, Ye Olde Pepper Candy Company, and more.

Pioneer Village: Salem 1630 was built in 1930 to mark the tercentennial of Massachusetts, Pioneer Village is America’s first living history museum. The village sits on three acres of land and contains various examples of colonial architecture: dugouts, wigwams, thatched roof cottages, and the Governor’s Faire House. Culinary and medicinal gardens and a blacksmith shop further interpret early 17th-century colonial life. Nestled between the woods and the ocean, Pioneer Village is a five minute drive from downtown in Salem’s Forest River Park at 98 West Avenue, Salem.

Salem Spice Festival
Saturday, September 10, 10am – 4pm
Sunday, September 11, 10am – 4pm
Pioneer Village: Salem in 1630, 98 West Avenue, Salem, MA
Admission: Free, with a suggested donation of $5

Salem MA Spice Festival 2016

Salem.org