Oct. 27, 2022 By Michael Dorgan
A local volunteer group will host a Halloween-themed street party along 31st Avenue in Astoria this weekend.
The two-day event, called Halloweekend, will take place on Saturday and Sunday along the 31st Avenue Open Street, which runs from 33rd Street to 35th Street. The activities are from 1 p.m. to 6 p.m. on both days.
Halloweekend will feature trick or treating, pumpkin painting, haunted photo booths, as well as costume contests for people and their pets.
There will also be tarot readings, “spooky” story time, live music, crafts and refreshments.
The family-friendly event, now in its third year, is being organized by the 31st Avenue Open Street Collective, a group that oversees the Open Streets program along 31st Avenue. The Open Street is completely closed off to traffic and parking on Saturdays and Sundays, between noon and 8 p.m.
“What began as a safe way to celebrate Halloween at the height of the pandemic has evolved into a tradition that affirms the importance of public spaces in bringing our community together,” said Erin Dennis, a 31st Avenue Open Street Collective volunteer.
There will be costume contests on both days at 2 p.m. and participants are asked to sign up at 1 p.m. in order to enter. There will be prizes for the best child costume, best adult costume, and best pet costume, organizers said.
The judges will be made up of local businesses. Assemblymember Zohran Mamdani will also be a judge on Saturday while Angela Mansberry, a local drag queen, will be a judge on Sunday.
Organizers have called on Halloweekend attendees to bring along unwanted cold weather essentials and food pantry items. The items will then be given to Astoria Food Pantry, located at 25-82 Steinway St. Attendees can also donate new or gently used baby items which will be given to the non-profit Room to Grow.
The 31st Avenue Open Street Collective also plans to host programming on the street Monday from 4 p.m. to 8 p.m. to coincide with the city’s new Trick-or-Streets initiative.
The initiative will see more than 100 Open Streets across the city closed to traffic so kids can safely trick or treat.