You can spend your October weeks getting lost in cornfields and being chased through the trees. You can carve pumpkins and cover your house in decorations. You can prep simmer pots and feast on cheap candy and suck down cider (both alcoholic and non-alcoholic) like it’s the only thing you have planned for the rest of the day. There are a million ways to get into the Halloween spirit in the District, but if you’ve graduated from Field of Screams and you can already recite every line from “The Exorcist,” it’s time to up your spooky game to the next level. Grab the nearest ouija board, pack a tarot deck, and spend some quality time in some of the most haunted places in D.C.
The Old Stone House
Of course the oldest, unchanged structure in the city is going to be packed with ghosts. This very old, very stone, house has been kicking it on M Street since 1765, and frankly if there weren’t any ghosts in this joint, I’d be even more concerned. Besides the spooky gift shop prices, there are said to be 11 different spirits haunting the property. From ladies dressed in 1700-esque attire to a supposedly darkly malevolent spirit named George (last name Town?), The Old Stone House has all of the hauntings you could ever want. 3051 M St. NW, DC; nps.gov
The Old Forever 21
When the moon is round and full, some say you can hear the generic pop muzak that once emanated from this deeply cursed Metro Center establishment. Now haunted by a different kind of specter (The Office Experience, The Friends Experience, other lifeless Instagram content generation experiences), the Old Forever 21 building must be cursed. What else can explain the ghostly sightings of frenzied interns of old looking for a cute new outfit before a night out at McFaddens? Or the smell of depressingly cheap polyester? Or the whisper of hangers clinking against each other? You can remove the fast fashion chain from the building, but you’ll never get rid of the ghost of a good deal. 1025 F St. NW, DC
The Old Eighteenth Street Lounge
If your EVP recorder starts playing distorted Thievery Corporation songs and your ghost box sounds like someone trying to scream order a vodka soda, you know you’ve come to the right place. ESL may have officially relocated to Shaw, and the old ESL location may still officially be a club, but if you’re dancing next to the DJ booth at Twelve After Twelve, just know you may be dancing with some paranormal paramours. If any establishment is haunted with the ghosts of hookups past (and a failed cocktail concept or two), it’s definitely this building. Spooky. Twelve After Twelve: 1212 18th St. NW, DC; twelveaftertwelve-dc.com; @twelveaftertwelve // The Eighteenth Street Lounge: 1230 9th St. NW, DC; 18thstlounge.com; @18thstlounge
The Old Zigfields/Secrets
What’s that? The haunting echo of high heels click clacking on the pavement? Or maybe its the whisper of a zipper being unzipped? Either way, your ouija board will soon be spelling out some wild stories from one of D.C.’s most iconic gay clubs. Whether your visited by the ghosts of drag queens past from the Zigfields side or the ghosts of nude dancers past from the Secrets side, these spectral beings will definitely know how to party. 1824 Half St. SW, DC
The <strike>Old</strike> White House
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