fb-pixelBest things to do in R.I. this week: Oct. 27-Nov. 4 - The Boston Globe Skip to main content

Best things to do in R.I. this week: Oct. 27-Nov. 4

Halloween Parties, Ray LaMontagne, Kurt Vile. Beer Fest, ComicCon, Newport Restaurant week kick-off and more!

The Rustic Tri-View Drive-In in North Smithfield closes out its season with the horror classic "A Nightmare on Elm Street."New Line Productions

It’s been quite a week for Rhody. South Kingstown’s Jayd Bun earned regional Yelp buzz, while a Westerly resident released an album... [checks notes] someone named Taylor Swift. And Halloween is almost here. The Big Scare. I’ve got so much to mention this week, it’s scary.


You can party like it’s 1989 at Askew. The Providence venue hosts an ‘80s themed Halloween Party Oct. 28. “Come dance to the sounds of early MTV while watching clips of the best drive-in slasher/horror movies from the decade of decadence.” ‘80s costumes encouraged. $10. 9 p.m.-2 a.m. 21+. 150 Chestnut St., Providence. Details here.



If you’re into mansions, theatrics, unlimited champagne, and open bars you might splurge on this: Newport’s Vanderbilt hosts “The Cabinet of Curiosities” Oct. 28. Billed as “an evening of mystery and intrigue,” guests take part in a dinner theater experience from No Ring Circus. (According to their website, they specialize in “the fusion of circus sideshow, performance art, and theater.”) Dinner is “an indulgent multi-course menu and unlimited champagne,” according to billing, plus “tarot and palms readings and Absinthe Fairies.” (Intriguing.) $275 per person includes open bar. Portion of proceeds go toward the Potter League. 401-846-6200. Details here.


You can stream at home any time. It’s time to scream with strangers.

  • Greenwich Odeum screens “The Exorcist” Oct. 28, doors 7 p.m. show 8 p.m. (I can’t look, just tell me what’s happening.) $10. 59 Main St., East Greenwich. Details here.
  • Catch a double feature in Newport, with an old classic — Boris Karloff in the 1931 version of “Frankenstein” at 4:30 p.m. — and a modern classic — the original “Hocus Pocus” at 7:30 p.m. Oct. 29 at the Jane Pickens Film and Event Center. General admission $12 per movie. 49 Touro St., Newport. 401-846-5474. Details here and here.
  • Rustic Tri-View Drive-In ends its season with a scream, screening “Beetlejuice,” “Halloween Ends,” “Nightmare on Elm Street,” and “Smile” among other spooky classics. 1195 Eddie Dowling Highway, North Smithfield. Details here and here.


Stoneacre Garden restaurant in Newport hosts a 21+ Halloween party, “Midnight in the Garden,” Oct. 29 at 9 p.m. Don your costume to dance the night away with wine, beer and themed cocktails. $10 advance; $15 door. 151 Swinburne Row. 401-619-8400 Details here.


Do “The Monster Mash” at the Haunted Theatre Bash — it’ll be a Cranston smash. Yup, the Historic Park Theatre in Cranston hosts a Halloween party Oct. 29. Expect a DJ, bars, “multiple rooms of fun” and “surprises all night,” along with a costume contest with cash and prizes, according to the billing. From $25. 9 p.m.-1 a.m. 848 Park Ave. Details here and here.



Indie treasure Kurt Vile plays Providence’s Columbus Oct. 29. There’s so much to love about Vile, but my favorite is the tremendous job he did in honoring Newport Folk favorite, the late great John Prine. Prine was a hero of Vile’s, and if you haven’t seen this yet, watch his Prine tribute cover of “Crazy as a Loon” with Jim James and John Paul White. Heart = full. $35 advance. Doors 7 p.m., show 8 p.m. 270 Broadway, Providence. 401-621-9660. Details here.


45 tables. 150 beers. One location. Yup, the WaterFire Arts Center hosts Beervana Fest 2022 on Oct. 29, with craft beers from Allagash to Zero Gravity. There are two sessions: 1:30-4:30 p.m, or 6-9 p.m. Ticket includes a tasting glass for 2-ounce pours. Cheers, Rhody. $65. 475 Valley St., Providence. Details here.


It’s two days of wine, beer, food, live music and grape-stomping a la Lucy at Newport Vineyard’s 5th Annual Harvest Festival Oct. 29 and 30. You might try a pie-eating contest or grape-stomp competition. #GetYourStompOn. Two sessions per day: Session 1: 11:30 a.m.–2 p.m. and 2:30-5 p.m. both days. $33 ticket includes souvenir glass, and five tastes from wine and beer bars. 909 East Main Road, Middletown. 401-848-5161. Details here.



Poe fans — and Rhode Island history buffs — might embark on “Edgar Allan Poe: a Rhode Island Walking Tour of Poe’s Providence.” A guided 1.2-mile walk highlights Poe, Providence poet Sarah Helen Whitman and her legacy in Providence. While in Providence Poe once “procured two ounces of laudanum” for a “poorly attempted suicide,” according to the event description. He also sat for daguerreotypes, one “becoming his most infamous portrait.” Free. Oct. 29, 4-6 p.m. Starting at the Sarah Helen Whitman Residence, 88 Benefit St. Details here.


(Is it just me, or do you have say that one out loud?) As you may have guessed from that subhead, Providence’s Athenæum hosts its Halloween party Oct. 29 from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m., called “Athenæum Hallow[æ]n.”Think vintage vibes — tintypes, tarot readings, vintage crafts and treats; vintage costumes encouraged. $10 non-members. 251 Benefit St. Details here.


Later that night, bring your wheels to East Providence for a moonlight ride: the Trek East Providence Halloween Ride Oct. 29 from 7-9 p.m. Pedal a casual 10 miles, starting at India Point Park, down the East Bay bike path to Narragansett Brewery. Every rider gets a free drink at the brewery. There’s also a post-ride Halloween party, according to the billing. Free. Details here.


Halloween is Monday, and it’s the last chance to check out these Halloween-themed events.


  • Scary Acres RI offers a “Dark Harvest Hayride” through Haunted Town, “brave the Haunted Burial Grounds Corn Field,” and “try to survive the Curse of the Bayou… Will you survive?” 2150 Scituate Ave., Cranston. Prices and hours vary. Details here.
  • 13th World is a “world of nightmares” that opens at sunset on select days through Halloween in Cumberland. Tickets from $25. 4097 Diamond Hill Road. Details here.
  • Billed as “Rhode Island’s newest terror experience,” Haunted Gallows in Burrillville features terrifying attractions like “Bathsheba’s Woods” and “The Dark Fair…a journey through an abandoned carnival, which will make you wonder what is really being played with, the games … or you?” (Under the bed here.) Tickets from $22. 505 E Ironstone Road. Details here.
  • The Providence River Boat Company offers a “Haunted Boat Ride.” Climb aboard… if you dare. Adults $30, kids 10-17 $27. Oct. 27, 28 as of this writing, various times of departure each day. Oct 28- Nov. 1. 101 Dyer St. Details here.
  • Discover the East Side’s dark side on Providence Ghost Tours. The walking haunted history tours are led by a “costumed, lantern-carrying guide who enchants you with the history and mystery” of PVD, according to the website. Wear comfortable shoes for about 1.7 miles of scary strolling. Prices vary. Details here.


Roger Williams Park Zoo offers daytime trick-or-treating two days early with “Spooky Zoo” on Oct. 29 from 10 a.m.-3 p.m. Ages 13+ $19.95; ages 2-12 $13.95; under 2 free. Details here.

Plus: Last call to see the Roger Williams Park Zoo Jack-o-Lantern Spectacular. Thousands of pumpkins aglow with this year’s theme: “Celebrating 75 years of Television” is up through Halloween. Open nightly 6-10:30 p.m. Mon.-Thurs.: $18 adult, $15 child. Fri-Sun.: $21 adult, $18 child. 1000 Elmwood Ave., Providence. 401-785-3510. Details here.


Ray LaMontagne is an act best seen live. The Grammy winner from Massachusetts has a voice that will move you. The first time I saw him perform was on Elvis Costello’s old show, “Spectacle.” He played “Henry Nearly Killed Me” and I was hooked. If you’re not familiar with him, this clip is baptism by fire. At PPAC Nov. 1, 7:30 p.m. From $39.50. 220 Weybosset St., Providence. 401-421-2787. Details here.


If you didn’t get enough costume-time on Halloween, you’ve got another chance. Rhode Island Comic Con turns 10, and fans will want to be at the Amica Mutual Pavilion Nov. 4-6. We’re getting into next week’s column territory here, but I’ll quickly mention that you’ll find a cosplay contest, panel discussions, and photo ops with dozens of stars, including Alicia Silverstone, Danny Trejo, Jason Lee, John Cleese, Rachael Leigh Cook, and much more, along with “team up photo ops” with “A Goofy Movie,” “Aladdin” “Beauty and the Beast,” “Clueless,” “Cool Runnings,” “My Cousin Vinny” and more. All the details, info, schedules and more here.



Newport’s Restaurant Week kicks off Nov. 4 and the menus are lit. Area restaurants offer discounts, deals, prix-fixe menu specials and more through Nov. 13. New this season: the Foodie Film Festival, in collab with the Jane Pickens Theatre Film + Event Center. The Nov. 4 feature: “The Art of Eating: The Life of M.F.K. Fisher” at 7:30 p.m. I’ll have more on this next week as it gets rolling. #FoodiesParadise. Details here.


Nothing says fall like hayrides, pumpkin-picking, apple-picking and cider donuts. A few suggestions:

  • Cucumber Hill is full-on fall funhouse: corn maze, axe-throwing, nighttime flashlight maze, lantern-lit hayrides, pick-your-own pumpkins, pony rides, food trucks and more. 39 Cucumber Hill Road, Foster. 401-397-7500. Details, prices and hours here.
  • Escobar’s Farm in Portsmouth offers an 8-acre corn maze, hayrides, pumpkin-picking, concessions and more. GPS: 255 Middle Road, Portsmouth. 401-683-1444. Details, rates and hours here.
  • Clark Farms in Matunuck boasts a corn maze, petting zoo, hayrides, pumpkin patch and more. 2984 Commodore Perry Highway. 401-783-8844. Details, rates and hours here.
  • Adams Farm in Cumberland offers a weekend corn maze, farm food truck and hayrides, plus pumpkin patch, farm animals, cornhole, “tire playground” and “hay mountain” for kids and more. 495 Sumner Brown Road. 401-714-4425. Details, rates and hours here.
  • At Johnston’s Salisbury Farms, find pumpkins, popcorns, candy apples, a giant corn maze and more. 11 Peck Hill Road. 401-942-9741. Details, rates and hours here.
  • It’s apple-picking — and candy-apple-eating — time. Check out our list of where to bag Braeburns and score sweet treats here.
  • For pumpkin-picking, fall mocktails and more sweets, see here.

Until next week, Rhody: keep rockin.’

Because of an editing error, an earlier version of this story misstated the name of musician Kurt Vile.