The Indiana Insider Blog

The Halloween Legend in Sleepy Irvington

View of the street fair

A view of the street fair along Washington Street. Courtesy of Joe Wisner.

Each year during the week and weekend closest to Halloween, the historic Indianapolis neighborhood of Irvington comes alive to celebrate. It’s no surprise that a neighborhood named for Washington Irving of “Legends of Sleepy Hollow” fame would take such a liking to this ghoulish holiday. Residents and visitors alike have been partaking in the Irvington Halloween Festival since its inception 65 years ago and this year will be no exception!

As a veteran attendee of Irvington Halloween Festival myself, I know for a fact that there is something for everyone to enjoy. Each year the schedule of events grows and this year the festival is a whole week long! Events during the week range from ghost walks to Cabaret Poe theater performances. One of my favorite traditions that takes place as a part of the festivities is the window painting contest. Local businesses in the heart of Irvington allow participants to decorate their windows with whatever their creative hearts desire and it really adds to the Halloween atmosphere.

Headless Horseman in parade

The Headless Horseman himself during the parade!

The week of festival activities will culminate on Saturday, October 29. The day begins with the Pleasant Run Run at 9 a.m. and festivities continue with live music on two stages at the street fair. A portion of Washington Street will be closed to traffic to allow festival-goers to browse craft booths, line up for food trucks and enter shops with ease.

The day will end with another great festival tradition: the Halloween parade. Local firemen, the crowned Irvington Halloween Festival Queen and costumed revelers will march down the center of Washington Street to show off their duds. It is always wonderful to see Irvington locals and many visitors come up with creative costume ideas. Maybe it’s the addition of new events, or maybe it’s the traditions I’ve taken part in since childhood, but year after year the Irvington Halloween Festival continues to be my favorite part of celebrating Halloween in Indianapolis!

For more information about all there is to do at the Irvington Halloween Festival, visit the festival website IrvingtonHalloween.com and connect with the festival on Facebook and Twitter.

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