Philadelphia and its surrounding counties always have something going on. Halloween is fast approaching and the witches, wizards and boos at the zoo have arrived! Boo at the Zoo, Chestnut Hill’s Witches and Wizards Weekend, a Halloween parade and dance party and more fall fun is all taking place this weekend. We’ve found the top free (and affordable) things to do this weekend, Oct. 18 to 20, in Philly and New Jersey.
What: Boo at the Zoo
For three weekends in October, "America's first zoo" becomes a Halloween haven with hay mazes, trick-or-treating and more. Kids are encouraged to wear Halloween attire!
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Where: Philadelphia Zoo, 34th Street and Girard Avenue, Philadelphia
When: through Oct. 27 from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.
Cost: Included with zoo admission
This two-day event is filled with wizardry with straw mazes, scavenger hunts, pub crawls and more
Where: Various locations in Chestnut Hill, Philadelphia
When: Friday and Saturday
Cost: Free to attend
Enjoy 11 days and more than 100 films at this annual festival that showcases a variety of filmmakers.
Where: Various locations
When: through Oct. 27
Check out the costumes, floats, music, mascots and more at the parade and then enjoy a dance party in the street.
Where: Landis Avenue between 45th and JFK Blvd., Sea Isle City, NJ
When: Friday from 7 to 9 p.m.
Enjoy a 50s-themed dance party on Friday night and then a street festival with classic cars, crafts, live music, food and more on Saturday.
Where: Wildwoods Convention Center and Fox Park, 4501 Boardwalk, Wildwood NJ
When: Friday from 6:30 to 10:30 p.m. and Saturday from 11 a.m. to 10:30 p.m.
Cost: $16 for dance party, free street festival
Taste the fall flavors of the area as the street outside the iconic Reading Terminal Market is transformed into and urban farm and market. There will be hay rides, arts and crafts, live music and plenty of food to eat.
Where: Outside the market on the 1100 block of Filbert Street, Philadelphia, PA
When: Saturday from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.
The Independence Seaport Museum will celebrate Oktoberfest with German dancing, German beer, light fare and more. Tickets include admission to the museum and performance.
Where: Independence Seaport Museum, 211 S. Christopher Columbus Blvd., Philadelphia
When: Saturday from 2 to 6 p.m.
Cost: $18 for adults, $14 for children
What: Bonfire on the Beach
Enjoy a bonfire on the beach with live entertainment, food and fun under the stars
Where: 1st and Surf Avenue, North Wildwood, NJ
When: Saturday from 6 to 10 p.m.
Cost: $10, children under 12 are $2
What: Pumpkin Festival
Celebrate all things fall with food, music, pumpkin painting and more.
Where: Historic Cold Spring Village, 720 Route 9 S., Cape May, NJ
When: Saturday from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m.
Find that special something at the indoor flea market brought to you by Phila Flea Markets.
Where: Cherry Street Pier No. 9, 121 N Christopher Columbus Blvd, Philadelphia, PA
When: Sunday from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.
Cost: Free, but bring that cash to buy something
Check out the studios of Philadelphia’s most talented artists at this two-weekend event. See what they are working on in a variety of mediums.
Where: Various locations
When Saturday and Sunday
What: AIDS Walk Philly
Participate in this walk/run to support zero new HIV/AIDS infections, deaths and stigma.
Where: Philadelphia Museum of Art steps, 2600 Benjamin Franklin Parkway, Philadelphia
When: Sunday from 7 to 10:30 a.m.
Cost: Free to watch
What: Find Your 'Happy Place'
The Happy Place is a bright, interactive, immersive and Instagram-ready pop-up exhibition featuring themed rooms, including a "Pot of Happiness" ball pit.
Where: King of Prussia Mall, upper level of the Plaza between Dick's Sporting Goods and H&M, 160 N. Gulph Road, King of Prussia, PA
When: through Jan. 5
Cost: $30 for adults, $20 for children, free for 3 and under
What: Jack’s Pumpkin Glow
Numerous hand-carved pumpkins will illuminate Fairmount Park. Marvel at the artistic pumpkins and get inspired to create your own at home.
Where: West Fairmount Park, 5201 Parkside Avenue, Philadelphia
When: through Nov. 3
Cost: $23 for adults
What: Ghost Ship Hologram
A 90-foot-tall "ghost ship" will be projected docked along the Delaware River near the Benjamin Franklin Bridge.
Where: Race Street Pier, N Christopher Columbus Blvd, Philadelphia, PA
When: Wednesdays through Sundays from 7 to 10 p.m. through Nov. 3
What: Mural Arts Month
Stroll the streets of Philadelphia or take a trolley tour this month and explore Philadelphia’s many artworks and the positive impact the program has had on the city.
Where: Varies locations
What: LGBT History Month
Throughout October there will be events and festivals celebrating the LGBT community.
Where: Varies locations
What: Blooms and Bamboo
This new exhibit brings bamboo art and bamboo installations to the conservatory.
Where: Longwood Gardens, 1001 Longwood Road, Kennett Square, Pa.
When: through Nov. 17
What: Terror Behind the Walls
One of the country’s most popular Halloween attractions returns with more creepy zombies and ghosts that pop out as you explore the abandoned halls of this former penitentiary.
Where: Eastern State Penitentiary, 2027 Fairmount Ave., Philadelphia
When: Friday through Nov. 19 on select dates and times
What: PHS Pop Up Garden
Throughout the summer this garden will host creative events, planet exchanges, arts and crafts for the kids and flower crown Fridays.
Where: 15th and South Street, Philadelphia
When: Open through October, Monday through Thursday from 5 p.m. to 10 p.m., Friday and Saturday from 2 p.m. to midnight and on Sunday from noon to 10 p.m.
Cost: Free to enter
Visit with dozens of animatronic dinosaurs as you discover and learn about things like volcano activity and fossils.
Where: The Academy of Natural Sciences
When: Through Jan. 20
Cost: From $7 in addition to general admission