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Question about Salem , Ma

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Sep 15th, 2012, 09:48 AM
  #1
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Question about Salem , Ma

We'll be in Boston for a medical conference end of October and so for Halloween.
Two questions :
1. Is Halloween in Salem a turist trap or worth it ??
2. If it worth it, how will it be possible not to go there(bus i think) but to come back to Boston ?
Thank for respons and practical tips.
Erik
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Sep 15th, 2012, 10:01 AM
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It's on the commuter train line so very easy to get to from Boston.

Salem is a lovely town with lots more than witch stuff, lots of nice colonial buildings, sea front, etc. Well worth visiting. EXCEPT for the last half of October when it will be jammed with touristy witch stuff.
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Sep 15th, 2012, 11:07 AM
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Salem at Halloween is a lot of people dressed up in costumes, most of them drunk. Anything remotely associated with any witchcraft history and anyone who wants to claim themself a witch uses it as an opportunity to make money off tourists.

If that is your thing, go - but make sure you check train schedules carefully so you don't get stranded - they do not run very often except during rush hour.
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Sep 15th, 2012, 11:44 AM
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To Gail : if i ask if it's a turist trap it's to avoid such eventuality and so not necessary to think i'm interested in drunk people and people making money off turists...
Erik
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Sep 15th, 2012, 12:53 PM
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I didn't think so - and not meaning to be insulting. Most of the drunk people are not actually tourists, but locals. The city is incredibly crowded every Halloween, and while it is not my thing either to travel to see a bunch of costumed drunks - it must appeal to someone since it is a big event every year. (My kids, in their 20s, might consider it a fun event - so not trying to impose my idea of fun on anyone)
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Sep 15th, 2012, 02:24 PM
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Yes, gail has hit it on the head! When my son was in college, they LOVED going to Salem on Halloween and they were not drunk but that does not mean that lots of the other people there are not.....the way he described it to us, it sounded like a MA version of mardi gras, a big free for all, but lots of fun for the very young.
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Sep 16th, 2012, 05:29 AM
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The things that make Salem worth a visit are the historic architecture, the waterfront, and the Peabody Essex Museum.

None of these is accessible really for the last two weeks of October. In addition to the drunks, there are real live actual people who really do believe in witchcraft, in other words and in my very humble opinion, people who would not be of much interest to someone attending a medical conference unless he should happen to be a psychiatrist.

Instead I might recommend Gloucester, also on the MBTA commuter rail. The Cape Ann Museum is less than half a mile from the station and has excellent collections of artists and particularly furniture makers who began locally and became internationally famous. It is also only a few blocks from the waterfront, which is a working watefront rather than a twee one like Rockports. Marblehead is also a good place to visit, all of these of course not on a rainy day.

The third weekend in October is the Head of the Charles Regatta, one of the largest rowing gatherings in the world. Crews from all over the world will be rowing then. Even if rowing is not your thing, the scene and the crowds are fascinating, and there are lots of food kiosks etc on the river bank near Harvard.

And of course the museums are glorious and easy to reach if your conference is in the Back Bay or Longwood Medical Area.
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Sep 17th, 2012, 10:37 AM
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The MBTA expands service between Salem and Bosotn for the last weekend of October, as well as on Halloween. There is also a fast ferry between Salem and Boston, which takes less than one hour from Boston's Long Wharf to Salem Wharf. www.salemferry.com.

Salem Haunted Happenings is a dynamic festival that has something for all ages and interests. I encourage you to visit www.hauntedhappenings.org for more information on the festival. Some of the walking tours and harbor tours do an excellent job of bringing the history and haunted together.

Kate Fox
Destination Salem
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