The Hippo


Apr 26, 2019








Music, dancing and scares
Halloween is for grownups too

By Michael Witthaus

 This year, Halloween events happen mostly on Saturday, Oct. 28, with a smattering of spookiness before and after. A few of the parties actually happen on Tuesday, Oct. 31, including an ’80s bash in downtown Manchester and a funky two-band show in Portsmouth. All events provide an excuse to get in costume, and most places offer cash prizes for the best efforts. Here’s a rundown of choices.

Thursday, Oct. 26
Castle on Charles (19 Charles St., Rochester, Dr. Gasp’s Halloween Special at 8 p.m. $5. Delight with the alter ego of New England folk musician Dan Blakeslee and his unique bag of original songs of Halloween oozing with vampires and ghastly creeps.
Rochester Opera House (31 Wakefield St., Rochester, 335-1992) Curse of the Gay Bride (concert version) at 7 p.m. $18 to $22. If you liked The Rocky Horror Picture Show then you will love this, which combines a rock show, theater and comic book art to create distinct and unique cartoon-ish musical event that you won’t soon forget. Also Oct. 27, Oct. 28, Oct. 29 and Oct. 31.
Friday, Oct. 27
Alan’s (133 N. Main St., Boscawen, 753-6631) Annual haunted Halloween costume party bash at 8 p.m. $150 cash for best costume, many other prizes and giveaways. Dancing to DJ Tom McFall.
Crow’s Nest (181 Plaistow Road, Plaistow, 974-1686) Bite the Bullet at 8 p.m. Popular rock cover band hosts the party, which includes prizes for best costume.
Dover Brickhouse (2 Orchard St., Dover, 749-3838) Halloween show with Human Speakers and Cool Parents at 9 p.m. A hip-hop vibe prevails at this party.
Executive Court Banquet Facility (1199 South Mammoth Road, Manchester, 626-4788) Boomer Halloween bash at 7 p.m. $15 in advance, $20 at the door. It’s a night out of dancing to your favorite ’70s hits (and some ’80s too), songs you loved before kids and a mortgage. $250 cash prize for best costume.
Grill 28 (200 Grafton Road, Pease golf course, Portsmouth, 433-1331) Party for a Purpose at 8 p.m. Wear your best costume, win some prizes, raise some money with DJ dancing, Photo booth and raffles. Prizes include gift cards from BG’s BoatHouse, Old Ferry Landing, Rudders Public House and Portsmouth Brewery.
Puritan Back Room (245 Hooksett Road, Manchester, 669-6680) Falseworld Entertainment Presents an “Epic Night of Halloween Festivities” at 6 p.m. The 21+ event includes dinner and dance music performed by Joe Sampson and special guest Jimmy Settle. $29 advance, $35 at the door. Buffet and costume contest with prizes.
Red River Theatres (11 S. Main St., Concord, 224-4600) The Rocky Horror Picture Show at 10 p.m. $15. Two nights (also Oct. 28). Costumes strongly encouraged. It’s an October tradition, a fun, raunchy night out. Your ticket includes prop bags (no outside props allowed). There’s a costume contest, and some special guests will join for the evening. 
Redhook Brewery (1 Redhook Way, Portsmouth, 430-8600) Halloween: Monster Smash at 7 p.m. Enjoy a spooky evening on the Beer Garden including DJ dancing and costume contest, with prizes awarded for first, second and third place, beer cocktails and discounted beers, tricks, treats, and monstrous surprises. Bring a donation for End 68 Hours of Hunger and receive a beer ticket redeemable at the party.
Riverwalk Cafe (35 Railroad Square, Nashua, 578-0200) DeadBeat at 8 p.m. $12. Come in costume and enjoy the popular Grateful Dead tribute act, which also performs the music of the Dead’s “family” of bands.
Salt hill Pub  (2 W. Park St., Lebanon, 448-4532) Wherehouse at 8 p.m. 15th annual Halloween Party from Hell with food and drink, tricks and treats, and top-notch danceable live rock ’n’ roll. Costumes and Halloween attire strongly suggested, with prizes for best costumes. The event is 21+, ID required.
Salt hill Shanty (1407 Route 103, Newbury, 763-2667) Acoustic Truffle at 8 p.m. Third annual Halloween bash with prizes for best costumes.
Slade’s Food & Spirits (4 W. Hollis St., Nashua, 886-1334) George Cox karaoke at 9 p.m. Come dressed up with your friends to enjoy cocktails, drafts, food and fun. Costume contest with $75 cash prize.
Tough Tymes (221 Rochester Road, Northwood, 942-5555) Cover band Fog Band at 9 p.m. Specials and prizes for best costumes. 
True Brew (3 Bicentennial Square, Concord, 225-2776) Halloween Howl with Mr Aaron outside in the Square at 7:30 p.m. Popular children’s entertainer plays outside amidst the merriment of a regional favorite event.
Whiskey Barrel (546 Main St., Laconia, 884-9536) Halloween bash with Flight 666 (Iron Maiden tribute), Souls of Sabbath and the blues-fueled hard rock of Fifth Freedom at 8 p.m. The bands are in costume. No cover charge.
Saturday, Oct. 28
American Legion Post 51 (Route 125, across from Telly’s, Epping, 679-8320) Halloween costume dance at 8 p.m. featuring the band Chippy & The YaYas playing songs from the ’60s on up. $5 admission at the door. Prizes for best costumes. 50/50 raffle. A cash bar will be open.
Area 23 (State Street, Concord, 881-9060) Crawl Space at 8:30 p.m. Energetic rock, costumes encouraged, with a contest to be judged at 10 p.m.
Auburn Pitts (167 Rockingham Road, Auburn, 622-6564) Halloween party at 9 p.m. MoGuitar will be performing with a free buffet and a costume contest with cash prizes. First place $75, second place $50, third place $25.
Auburn Tavern (346 Hooksett Road, Auburn, 587-2057) Second annual Halloween party at 9 p.m. Cash prizes for best costume, drink specials, giveaways and live music. 
The Bar (2B Burnham Road, Hudson, 943-5250) Crave’s annual Halloween bash at 9 p.m. with Granite State Rhythm. Dress in your favorite costume and rock out with Crave.
Bonfire (950 Elm St., Manchester 663-7678) A country Halloween party in Manchester. The EXP Band plays at 9 p.m. Get your “redneck” on and wear a Halloween costume.
Boston Billiard Club (55 Northeastern Boulevard, Nashua, 943-5630) BOOze Fest at 8 p.m. Best costume wins $1,000. The night is sponsored by Shipyard Brewing Co. and Mic Stylz DJs. No cover, 21+.
Bungalow (333 Valley St., Manchester, 792-1110) Fright Night hip-hop Halloween. Costume contest at 5 p.m. followed by Hobbs, SykoSinna, Lyrical Deathwish, Popkorn, Kremorteus, Kazkit the Monsta, G-Mack w/ Annie, Problemattik Illitant, Killer Intellect, Skero, Outland Camp and a VIP after party. 18+, drinks 21+ with valid ID. Tickets are $7 In advance, $10 at the door and $25 for VIP.
Cara (11 Fourth St., Dover, 343-4390) B. Dabblez at 9:30 p.m. As is tradition there’s a best costume contest and prize giveaways. 21+ with ID.
Castle on Charles (19 Charles St., Rochester, Doubleheader with shows at 5 and 8 p.m. $5 each. Two Halloween costume parties: Hillbilly Halloween with the Cedar Mountain Bluegrass Band from 5 to 7 p.m. and The Freestones playing blues-based rock, roots, reggae and folk from 8 to 11 p.m.
Chop Shop (920 Lafayette Road, Seabrook, 760-7706) Halloween Spooktacular Bash with cover band Bite the Bullet at 9 p.m. $25. Fun and games, cash prizes, costume contest, psychic readings, dinner and breakfast buffet. Hotel package with shuttle available.
Cork n Keg (4 Essex Drive, Raymond, 244-1573) Fabulous funk band Queen City Soul anchors this annual party at 7 p.m.
Country Spirit (262 Maple St., Henniker, 428-7007) Complete Unknowns at 8 p.m. Come dressed as your favorite alter ego and prepare for a really rough morning on All Saints Day.
Derryfield (625 Mammoth Road, Manchester, 623-2880) Popular cover band Mugsy hosts third annual Halloween bash at 8 p.m. Come in costume. Prizes for first-, second- and third-place costume and best couple costume. Cost is $20 presale, $25 at the door. 21+.
Dolly Shakers (38 E. Hollis St., Nashua, 577-1718) Halloween open mike at 9 p.m. Paul Beauet hosts the third annual Halloween bash. Celebrate in costume. Wear your eye-popping best and you might win a prize.
The Falls Grill & Tavern (421 Central Ave., Dover 749-0995) Halloween costume contest party featuring Whatsername, 9 p.m. High energy Green Day cover band also featuring danceable classic rock; prizes for most creative costume. No cover.
Fury’s Publick House (1 Washington St., Dover, 617-3633) Superfrog and Kenny Brothers Band at 8 p.m. Big-time reunion from the Seacoast favorites, with support from the erstwhile Kenny Brothers Band.
Haluwa (Nashua Mall, Nashua, 883-6662) Cover band Panache starts at 8 p.m. and a costume contest is planned.
Harlow’s (3 School St., Peterborough, 924-6365) Halloween party with DJ Austin Wright and Luke MF Duke at 8 p.m. Records spin and costumes pop at this annual bash.
Hawg’s Pen (1114 Route 11, Farmington, 755-3301) High-energy rock band Kyllswitch at 9 p.m., dress to kill and enjoy the Halloween vibe.
Jade Dragon (515 DW Highway, Merrimack, 424-2280) Halloween party with popular hard rock cover band enCircle at 9 p.m. playing STP, Foo Fighters, RHCP and others. Costume contest with prizes.
Jewel (61 Canal St., Manchester, 836-1152) Night of the Dead Halloween Bash featuring Grateful Dead tribute band Maine Dead Project at 8 p.m., so the costumes are already on stage. See if you can top them.
Lafayette Club (34 High St., Nashua, 889-9680) Sound Xpressions at 8 p.m. Free admission. Come in costume and enjoy this band that plays a variety of modern country, classic rock and pop.
Lakes Region Casino (1265 Laconia Road, Belmont, 267-7778) Freddie Partridge & Loaded Dice/DJ at 9 p.m. Prizes for best costume and more. Freddie Partridge and Loaded Dice are an all-request band. You ask them to play something, they play it. If they do not know the song they have a DJ that will play it for you. No cover.
Latchkey (41 Vaughan Mall, Portsmouth, 766-3333) Latchkey’s first Halloween bash starts at 9 p.m. Live music from The Nate Bash Band, special cocktails and bar bites, cash prizes for costume contest. Costumes required. Limited number of tickets available.
Leda Light House (340 Amherst St., Nashua, 759-0987) Rock and Glow Bowl Extravaganza at 8 p.m. $10 all-ages event with blacklight bowling and live music from Potsy, Driven Sane and Dead Harrison. Featuring three local bands and Boston headliner Carissa Johnson, many local artisans showcasing their work, and a costume contest with prizes donated by local area businesses.
The Local (2 E. Main St., Warner, 456-6066) Fourth annual Halloween party with The DoBros at 8 p.m. This family duo performs what’s becoming an annual tradition at the bucolic club with good food and a great beer list.
ManchVegas (50 Old Granite St., Manchester, 222-1677) Halloween bash at 9 p.m. $500 cash prize to first place, gift certificates to second and third. Without Paris performing live on stage from 10 p.m. to 1 a.m. Judges will be walking around all night and each will select a couple costumes to be entered in the finals. Eight people will then be brought on stage and the crowd will decide the winner. Contest winners announced at midnight.
Mojo’s Sports Bar (95 Brewery Lane, Portsmouth, 436-6656) MoJo’s Halloween Bash at 8 p.m. Join the annual party, with $100 cash prize for best costume (judging at 11:30 p.m.) $2 taco bar until 11 p.m., with drink specials and giveaways.
New Wa Toy (611 Mast Road, Manchester, 668-1088) Halloween Scary-Oke at 9 p.m. DJ Kenny P hosts, with prizes for best costumes, fun food and mai-tais.
Paradise Beach Club (322 Lakeside Ave., Laconia, 366-2665) Annual Halloween bash with Fighting Friday at 8 p.m. $13 in advance, $15 day of show. Over $1,000 in prizes for scariest, sexiest, funniest, best couple, group and most original costume (must be original idea and handmade).
Pasta Loft (241 Union Square, Milford, 672-2270) Slakas Halloween costume party at 8 p.m. First-place costume wins a $50 gift certificate and second place wins a $25 gift certificate, plus Slakas sweatshirts and T-shirts as prizes. It’s a fun night of food and drinks, music and dancing.
Patrick’s (18 Weirs Road, Gilford, 293-0841) Halloween party with Justin Jaymes at 8 p.m. A favorite at the Lakes Region Irish-themed bar performs during the annual costume party.
Peddler’s Daughter (48 Main St., Nashua, 821-7535) Manchester cover band Take 4 plays music of all kinds from the ’50s up to the most current songs on the radio, starting at 8 p.m.
Penuche’s Ale House (6 Pleasant St., Concord, 228-9833) Halloween in the Basement at 9 p.m. Evidence Lies returns for this year’s extravaganza.
Pipe Dream Brewing (40 Harvey Road, Londonderry, 404-0751) Kids during the day noon to 4 p.m., then adults only at the Halloween party from 6 to 9:30 p.m. Food, fun, games and Pipe Dream’s special potions (beers).
Pit Road Lounge (388 Loudon Road, Concord, 226-0533) Talkin’ Smack at 8 p.m. Enter the costume contest to win great prizes. Dance the night away with a favorite cover band.
Portsmouth Gas Light (64 Market St., Portsmouth, 430-9122) Festival of Witches at 8 p.m. One cover gets you unlimited access to both the deck and the nightclub. The deck will feature Jamsterdam from 7 to 11 p.m., Chad Verbeck is on the deck at 10 and Ryan Williamson is in the Pub while the Nightclub will feature DJ music and a best costume contest with $1,000 in cash and prizes. Pay $12 online or $15 at the door.
Racks (20 Plaistow Road, Plaistow, 974-2406) Unbridled with Whitches Brew and Preciphist at 9:30 p.m. Rock out, with two local bands opening up for the headliner Preciphist, and a costume party.
Red Blazer (72 Manchester St., Concord, 224-4101) Halloween Howl After Party at 8 p.m. $5 cover charge gets you into the party and into the 50/50 raffle. With multiple costume contests and giveaways, it’s the longest-running Halloween party in Concord. Dance music from DJ MadDog.
Red Door (107 State St., Portsmouth, 373-6827) One final night at 9 p.m. Last night for this venerable dance club and martini lounge. No costume party planned, but it will be special nonetheless.
Ri Ra (22 Market Square, Portsmouth, 319-1680) DJ dance party at 9 p.m. Best costume wins $200. $5 witches brew. Book a table before the Portsmouth parade; kids in costume get a free dessert. 
River’s Pub (76 Derry St., Hudson, 943-7832) Halloween party at 9 p.m. with Overdrive and special guests Aquanet, an ’80s metal tribute band. Costume or no costume, it’s your choice. Food, beverages and spooktacular good times, no cover charge.
Salt hill Pub Newport (58 Main St., Newport, 863-7774) Tirade at 8 p.m. 11th annual Halloween bash hosted by energetic Upper Valley rock cover band, with prizes for best costumes.
Salt hill Pub West Lebanon (5 Airport Road, West Lebanon, 298-5566) Night Cap at 8 p.m. It’s the first ever Halloween party at the Irish Pub chain’s newest location. Costumes and Halloween attire strongly suggested, with prizes for best costumes. The event is 21+, ID required.
Savory Square (32 Depot Square, Hampton, 926-2202) Annual Halloween party at 8 p.m. Come in costume; call for entertainment.
Shaskeen (909 Elm St., Manchester, 625-0246) Halloween Party with DJ dancing at 9 p.m. Party in the back room, with prizes for best costume and other giveaways. DJ Myth (Chris Bennett) playing top 40 hits and requests.
Stone Church (5 Granite St., Newmarket, 659-7700) Jumbo Circus Peanuts big band Halloween party. Doors at 6 pm. Show at 7:30.
Tupelo Music Hall (10 A Street, Derry Happy Halloween from The Slambovian Circus of Dreams, 8 p.m. This year’s event is “A Mid-Autumn Night’s Dream,” born of Faerie Festivals and Shakespeare. Tickets $30.
Village Trestle (25 Main St., Goffstown, 497-8230) Halloween costume party with Facedown at 8 p.m. It’s a mission for this popular cover band. Enjoy drink specials and prizes for best costume.
Wally’s Pub (144 Ashworth Ave., Hampton, 926-6954) Prospect Hill, Lansdowne and Killer at Large at 8 p.m. Full-fledged mayhem is promised at this popular hard rock band’s annual show. Tickets are $.5 at for the 21+ event.
Whiskey Barrel (546 Main St., Laconia, 884-9536) Eric Grant Band at 6 p.m. Cash prizes for best dressed man and woman judged by Eric Grant and band as well as staff.
Whiskey’s 20 (20 Old Granite St., Manchester, 641-2583) Scream at 8 p.m. DJs Shawn White and EP spin the tunes with cash and prizes for sexiest costumes. This party’s been running for 20 years.
Wild Rover (21 Kosciuszko St., Manchester, 669-7722) Songs With Molly at 9 p.m. Halloween party sponsored by Magic Hat, costume contest with prizes for first, second and third place and drink specials all night long.
Wolfeboro Inn (90 N. Main St., Wolfeboro, 569-3016) Lestah Polyestah Halloween at 8 p.m. Annual Halloween bash, with the fantastic old-school funk-dance-disco band. $5 cover, cash bar, great costume prizes and giveaways.
Sunday, Oct. 29
American Legion Post 79 (35 W. Brook St., Manchester ) Manchvegas Metalfest 17 starts at noon with Empire, Gravebox, Dawn of End, Above the Din, Force of Habit, Trading Heroes for Ghosts, Attacking the Vision, Screams of Hockomock, When the Dead Won’t Die and Deathamphetamine. $5 at the door.
Wally’s Pub (144 Ashworth Ave., Hampton, 926-6954) Halloween DJ battle: Dead Beats Exodus at 6 p.m. Peak Hour Music, 603 Elevated Imagery and Frank City Entertainment present the largest Halloween costume party in northern New England as Wally’s is transformed into a haunted mansion and with a full graveyard. Featuring DJ BL3ND from Los Angeles in his first area appearance in three years.
Monday, Oct. 30
Murphy’s Taproom (494 Elm St., Manchester, 644-3535) Costume party at 9 p.m. $3. There will be music and a dance floor and plenty of room to mingle. 21+ get a wristband and under 21 get an “x.”
Tuesday, Oct. 31
3S Artspace (319 Vaughan St., Portsmouth, 766-3330) 3S Halloween Extravaganza with Kat Wright & The Indomitable Soul Band + Harsh Armadillo at 9 p.m. $15. Kat Wright and The Indomitable Soul Band are on a simple quest to “send people out feeling better than when they walked in” to the show. Harsh Armadillo is a nine-piece steamroller out of Portsmouth combining funk, jazz and hip-hop roots to make original music that inspires minds and dance moves alike.
Breezeway Pub (14 Pearl St., Manchester, 621-9111) Dragged up Urban Legends at 8 p.m. The trampiest of the girls are coming out to give you a terrifying sight. Scarrlett Couture, Ima Cummings, Jennifer Diamond and other special guest performers provide crazy interpretations of the scariest ghouls and gals that everyone knows about, and maybe a few that are new. Showtime is roughly 10:30 p.m. 21+ with valid ID. 
British Beer Co. (103 Hanover St. at Portwalk Place, Portsmouth, 501-0515) Halloween party with Ellis Falls at 8 p.m. Enjoy a duo acoustic act born out of a passion for music and performance, playing alternative rock-country-pop.
Fody’s (9 Clinton St., Nashua, 577-9015) Halloween party and karaoke dance party at 9:30 p.m. DJ Mark Allen hosts, with a costume contest offering $100 cash prize.
Penuche’s Music Hall (1087 Elm St., Manchester, 206-5599) Radio Star at 9 p.m. Costume party with an all-’80s cover band playing rock, synth-pop, hard rock/hair bands, new wave, and one-hit wonders. 
Salt Hill Pub (7 Lebanon St., Hanover, 676-7855) Eighth annual Halloween party featuring Pub Scary-Oke with DJ Brad starts at 8 p.m.
Skinny Pancake (3 Lebanon St., Hanover, 540-0131) Conniption Fits Halloween Party at 7:30 p.m. The official costume party with the C-Fits, with prizes for best costumes, beer specials from Harpoon and craft cocktails from the bar. To donate a prize for stage mentions and general awesome karma, email
Thirsty Moose (21 Congress St., Portsmouth, 427-8645) Singer and piano player Vere Hill at 9 p.m.  

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