Editor’s Note: The CDC has specific recommendations in place for Halloween 2020. We have updated our information to the best of our knowledge, but as we’ve learned in 2020, changes can happen at the last minute, so please check with your local city and county to get the most up-to-date info. on what is allowed in your area. Even if you can’t trick-or-treat, there are lots of fun ways to celebrate with the kids.
While the jury’s still out on whether these ‘hoods will be featuring candy chutes this Halloween, chances are All Hallows’ Eve 2020 features the ultimate trick: you won’t get most of your treats going from door to door. Scroll down for some of yesteryear’s best bets for major candy hauls and get ready to map out your best route for trick-or-treating in Washington, DC in 2021.
photo: Conner Baker via Unsplash
Around the world can be found when you knock on doors along Embassy Row, where international embassies stretch from the Vice President’s home all the way to Dupont Circle. More than 20 embassies invite trick-or-treaters to explore cultures from around the world. You may be handed a few tourism pamphlets along with your candy bars, but where else can you say you’ve been trick-or-treating in Indonesia, Armenia, Ireland, and Portugal all in one night?
COVID-19 Update: Embassies will not be handing out candy this year, but for $40 you can have candies from around the world shipped to your home.
Start here: Massachusetts Ave. NW
If your crew is obsessed with door knocking skeletons, glow-in-the-dark pumpkins, and all other forms of Halloween decorations, spend the evening in this MD ‘burb. The folks on Perry Avenue off of University Blvd. know how to do it up for Halloween. Plus, there’s candy…lots and lots of candy.
COVID-19 Update: This year’s block party is cancelled. We look forward to seeing everyone at “Scary Perry” in 2021.
Start here: Perry Ave. off of University Blvd.
Candy flows in this family-heavy neighborhood with back-to-back row houses. Once you’ve had your lollipop fill, head to Eastern Market (or start there!) for some serious costume watching.
Start here: Eastern Market
Remember when you were a kid and your entire neighborhood got in on trick or treating action? This Arlington hideaway off of King Street will have you feeling all nostalgic for those days of yore. With back-to-back townhouses and condo buildings, this ‘hood is great for first time trick-or-treaters and trick or treating groups.
Start here: Abingdon St., Arlington, VA
While crowds of people-watchers can definitely turn Georgetown’s Halloween into a Nightmare on M St., there’s something to be said for trick-or-treating on those narrow side streets, where the row houses are so close together; you can score twice the candy in half the time! Avoid M St. and Wisconsin Ave. proper unless you and your brood are more interested in seeing the coolest costumes in town (Georgetowners do know how to dress up!), and focus on the side streets where you’ll probably need two bags to carry all your loot.
Start here: Side streets between M St. and Wisconsin Ave. NW
photo: Marco via Flickr
Old Town Alexandria
A history of haunted houses and ghost stories set the stage for a frightfully fun All Hollows Eve in Old Town Alexandria. Kids can pound the brick-layered sidewalks and knock on the doors of old style Colonials at this popular trick-or-treating destination. Many of the shops along King Street hand out candy as well. For those on the hunt for a good haunt we recommend the candlelight ghost tour.
Start here: 221 King St., Alexandria, VA
Chevy Chase DC
Rittenhouse between Broad Branch Rd. and Utah Ave. is the epicenter of trick-or-treating in Chevy Chase DC. All the houses really get into it and have fun decorating. The stores on ‘The Avenue’ offer their ‘Spooktacular’ from 4-6 p.m. where treats are passed out and pumpkins can be painted. The street and sidewalk can be very crowded so consider giving your little ones glow sticks or reflector vests so they are easily visible by cars.
Start here: Broad Branch Rd., Washington, DC
The annual block party on Lamont St. NW, between 17th and 18th St.. is the stuff of legends, with spooky shenanigans galore sure to delight little ones and their parents. They close down the street, and almost every house is decorated. They also have a costume contest.
Start here: Lamont St. NW between 17th and 18th St.
photo: Haley Phelps via Unsplash
The annual Halloween party at Trolley Turnaround Park from 5-7 p.m. with a trick-or-treat parade, games, and a dog costume contest is the perfect jump off point to hit the whole ‘hood. There’s even a dance party and family friendly movie!
Start here: 1101 Monroe St. NW
Great Falls, VA
With its big houses and lots of young families, Great Falls is a great choice for trick-or treating! And you can do some pretty awesome pre-gaming as well! The Great Falls Halloween Spooktacular and Pet Parade start as early as 4 p.m. and there’s even a Haunted House. Enjoy trick-or-treating with local merchants in a safe environment right in the heart of town.
Start here: 776 Walker Rd., Great Falls VA
Named for the Englishman who founded a ship-building company, Fell’s Point celebrates Baltimore’s British nautical roots. It’s located where Fleet Street, Eastern Avenue, Aliceanna Street and Thames Street converge. Fells Point features a neighborhood of homes for kids and their families to trick-or-treat, as well as restaurants and shops. In fact, all ghouls and goblins are welcome to stroll the spooky streets to find tricks and treats since friendly Fells Point Businesses will be handing out candy and treats for trick-or-treaters from 3–6 p.m. on Halloween night—Allergy-friendly, too!
Start here: Thames & S. Caroline St., Baltimore, MD
—Guiomar Ochoa with Ayren Jackson-Cannady and Jamy Bond
featured photo: Chanikarn Thongsupa via Rawpixel