– By AVERY YALE KAMILA

Staff Writer

nyone who’s ever read a Stephen King novel knows Maine can be a particularly creepy place. At this time of year, the fear factor increases exponentially as the state comes alive with events and attractions devoted to the undead.

You can experience Maine’s darker side everywhere from corn mazes to cemeteries. Or, if you’re particularly brave, consider visiting a Halloween attraction with a history of paranormal activity.

On the rural edge of the state along the New Hampshire border, the Parsonsfield Seminary lurks in the woods. Built in 1832, the campus includes a 42-room dormitory where the spirits remain restless. Voices echo down empty hallways, and the girls’ side of the dormitory is said to be particularly haunted.

“A couple of years ago, I was in the basement all by myself and something touched me on my head,” recalled Mary Tirrell, a member of the Friends of Parsonfield Seminary who attended the school in the 1950s when it was an elementary school. “I turned around and I thought I’d run into something, but there was nothing there.”

This Friday and Saturday offers your last chance this year to experience the dimly lit seminary filled with fog, cobwebs, insects, carnival freaks and Frankenstein. The Halloween actors won’t touch you, but the same can’t be said for the spirits.

On the other side of the state, along a lonely stretch of the Penobscot River, Fort Knox has maintained a watchful eye since 1844. Over the years, a number of fort keepers passed away while on duty, and historians suspect others may have perished during the construction of the massive granite fortification.

Groups that range from local paranormal investigators to the stars of the Syfy series “Ghost Hunters” have found evidence of haunted happenings at Fort Knox.

For the past 13 years, the Friends of Fort Knox have hosted the fundraising event Fright at the Fort. Last year, more than 9,000 people toured through the bowels of the haunted fort over the course of four nights. (A particularly impressive number when you consider the town of Prospect, where the fort is located, is home to slightly more than 600 residents.)

The theme of this year’s tours, which wrap up Friday and Saturday, is Zombie Apocalypse.

“We try and do different concepts every year, and zombies seem to fit in with the end of the world coming in December this year,” joked Leon Seymour, executive director of the Friends of Fort Knox and the mastermind behind Fright at the Fort.

As a special treat, the fort is selling a limited number of $30 tickets to folks who want to spend Halloween night inside the building. Earlier this week, there were only 10 tickets left for the overnight experience.

The tour itself features blood-soaked zombies, an indoor corn maze and a prop that came straight from Hollywood.

But all Seymour would say about it was: “Wait for the pig.”

Staff Writer Avery Yale Kamila can be contacted at 791-6297 or at:

[email protected]

Twitter: AveryYaleKamila

HALLOWEEN EVENTS

ATTRACTIONS

n THE ORIGINAL HAUNTED HAYRIDES: Board a haywagon and travel through acres of horrors and frights.

WHEN: 6:30 to 8:30 p.m. Thursday and Sunday; 6:30 to 10 p.m. Friday and Saturday

WHERE: Scarborough Downs Road, Scarborough

HOW MUCH: $13; $9 for children (cash only)

INFO: 885-5935; hauntedhayridesmaine.com

n DESTINATION HAUNT: In the dark woods, come face-to-face with the Buried Alive Cemetery, the Execution Center and the Lebanon Laboratory.

WHEN: 6:30 to 9 p.m. Thursday, Sunday, Wednesday and Nov. 1; 6:30 to 11 p.m. Friday and Saturday

WHERE: 249 Lord Road, Lebanon

HOW MUCH: $15; $12 for children

INFO: destinationhaunt.com

n THE HAUNTING — CREEPS AND FREAKS AT THE SEMINARY: Travel through a 42-room building and surrounding campus, where frightful creatures lurk in dark places.

WHEN: 6:30 to 9:30 p.m. Friday and Saturday

WHERE: Parsonsfield Seminary, Route 160 (504 North Road), North Parsonsfield

HOW MUCH: $10; $5 for children under 12

INFO: 793-8825; parsonsfieldseminary.org

n FRIGHT AT THE FORT: Fort Knox succumbs to the zombie apocalypse, and brave souls can enter the fort if they dare.

WHEN: 5:30 to 9 p.m. Friday and Saturday

WHERE: 711 Fort Knox Road, Prospect

HOW MUCH: $10; $5 for children under 12. Express tickets: $12; $7 for children under 12. Halloween overnight tickets (limited): $30

INFO: 469-6553; fortknox.maineguide.com/fright

n HALLOWEEN HARVEST: Travel by wagon down a haunted trail and enjoy ghoulish treats at the spook shack.

WHEN: 6 to 10 p.m. Friday and Saturday

WHERE: Raitt Farm Homestead Museum, 2077 State Road, Eliot

HOW MUCH: $6

INFO: raittfarmmuseum.org

n THE GAUNTLET AT HARVEST HILL FARMS: Encounter spirits and ghosts of laboratory experiments on this dark wooded trail.

WHEN: 6:30 to 11 p.m. Friday and Saturday; 6:30 to 10 p.m. Wednesday

WHERE: 125 Pigeon Hill Road, Mechanic Falls

HOW MUCH: $15

INFO: harvesthillfarms.com/Gauntlet.html

n NIGHTTIME CORN MAZE ADVENTURE: Bring a flashlight to see if you can find your way out again. Half of the proceeds go to local food banks.

WHEN: 6:30 to 11 p.m. Friday and Saturday; 6:30 to 10 p.m. Wednesday

WHERE: 125 Pigeon Hill Road, Mechanic Falls

HOW MUCH: $8

INFO: harvesthillfarms.com/Corn_Maze.html

n MOONLIGHT CORN MAZE: Find out how frightening it is to be lost in the corn under the cover of darkness.

WHEN: 6 to 9 p.m. Friday and Saturday

WHERE: Pumpkin Valley Farm, 135 Anderson Road, Dayton

HOW MUCH: $8

INFO: 929-4545; pumpkinvalleyfarm.com

n HAUNTED CASTLE’S KEEP: Tour the castle’s corridors and try to stay away from its monsters and apparitions.

WHEN: 5 to 9 p.m. Friday to Sunday and Wednesday

WHERE: 2634 Bristol Road, New Harbor

HOW MUCH: Free

INFO: 677-3741

n FIRST PARISH GORHAM HAUNTED HOUSE: Confront dark terrors and frightening scenes of horror in this historic landmark.

WHEN: 7 p.m. Friday and Saturday

WHERE: First Parish Church, 1 Church St., Gorham

HOW MUCH: $6; $4 for children; $20 for family of five

INFO: 839-6751

HAUNTED HISTORY TOURS

n WICKED WALKING TOURS: Stroll through the Old Port and hear ghostly tales of the city’s haunted past.

WHEN: 8 p.m. Thursday to Saturday and Monday to Wednesday

WHERE: Meet at Bell Buoy Park next to Flatbread Co. on Commercial Street, Portland

HOW MUCH: $16; $13 for seniors; $11 for children under 12. Tickets must be purchased in advance.

INFO: 730-0490; wickedwalkingtours.com

n HAUNTED SEGWAY TOUR: Hear tales of Portland’s ghostly past while cruising through town on a Segway.

WHEN: Noon, 1 p.m. and 2 p.m. Thursday to Wednesday

WHERE: Segway Tours of Portland, 25 Pearl St.

HOW MUCH: $65

INFO: 619-7610; portlandsegway.com/tours

n GHOSTLY BANGOR TOUR: Walk through downtown and hear tales of paranormal activity.

WHEN: 7 p.m. Thursday and Saturday

WHERE: Thomas A. Hill House, 159 Union St., Bangor

HOW MUCH: $10; $5 for children under 12

INFO: 942-1900

n WALK AMONG THE SHADOWS: Professional actors present details about Portland’s famous characters buried in Eastern Cemetery.

WHEN: 6:30 to 7:30 p.m. Friday and Saturday; tours leave every 15 minutes

WHERE: Eastern Cemetery, Congress Street (base of Munjoy Hill), Portland

HOW MUCH: $10; $5 for children under 12

INFO: spiritsalive.org/wats

n HAUNTED HISTORY AT NORLANDS: Travel the trail of Norlands’ past and learn about the property’s strange happenings.

WHEN: 6 to 9 p.m. Friday and Saturday

WHERE: Norlands Living History Center, 290 Norlands Road, Livermore

HOW MUCH: $8; $6 for children under 12; $25 for family of five

INFO: 897-4366; norlands.org

n THE SPIRIT WALK: Join a guided tour of South Buxton Cemetery featuring black-caped spirits sharing stories of past residents who rest in the graveyard.

WHEN: 3:45 to 5 p.m. Saturday, followed by Halloween treats and music at the Royal Brewster Barn

WHERE: First Congregational Church of Buxton, corner of Route 202 and Route 112

HOW MUCH: Free/donation

INFO: 929-6495

PARTIES

n PLANET DOG HALLOWEEN PARTY: Dress up Fido in his homemade Halloween finest for a chance to win doggie prizes. Beer for humans and treats for dogs.

WHEN: 6 to 7 p.m. Thursday

WHERE: Planet Dog Company Store, 211 Marginal Way, Portland

HOW MUCH: Free/donation

INFO: 347-8606

n PLANETARIUM HALLOWEEN PARTY: Dress in costume and watch the “Moon Witch” show and the new live-action program “Sky Monsters,” and enjoy free food.

WHEN: 6 to 8 p.m. (party); 8 p.m. (ghost tour) Friday

WHERE: Southworth Planetarium, University of Southern Maine, Portland

HOW MUCH: $6; $2 with costume

INFO: usm.maine.edu/planet

n CAMP SUNSHINE MAINE PUMPKIN FESTIVAL: See thousands of lit jack-o-lanterns carved by local schoolchildren and members of the community while listening to live music, playing games and noshing on food. Proceeds go to Camp Sunshine, a Maine-based national retreat for children facing life-threatening illnesses and their families.

WHEN: Noon to 8 p.m. Saturday

WHERE: L.L. Bean Discovery Park, Main Street, Freeport

HOW MUCH: Free/donation

INFO: campsunshine.org/pumpkinfestival/portland_home.html

n FAMILY FRIGHT NIGHT AT THE GARDENS: Take part in a costume parade for all ages, trick-or-treating and crafts.

WHEN: 4 to 7 p.m. Saturday

WHERE: Coastal Maine Botanical Gardens, 132 Botanical Gardens Drive, Boothbay

HOW MUCH: $15; $12 for children

INFO: 633-4333, Ext. 101

n SPACE HALLOWEEN PARTY: Don your costume and join the dance party.

WHEN: 8 p.m. Saturday

WHERE: Space Gallery, 538 Congress St., Portland

HOW MUCH: $10; 21-plus

INFO: space538.org

n PORTSPORTS HALLOWEEN PARTY & TEQUILA CRAWL: Join a tequila crawl for an adult trick-or-treat, enter the costume contest and dance the night away.

WHEN: 7 p.m. Saturday

WHERE: Geno’s Rock Club, 625 Congress St., Portland

HOW MUCH: $10; 21-plus

INFO: portsportsmaine.com/events/halloween12

n SID TRIPP’S 17TH ANNUAL HALLOWEEN BASH: Dance to Under the Covers and enter the costume contest for a chance to win a Sunday River ski weekend. This year’s theme is zombies, and a costume is required to get in.

WHEN: 9 p.m. to 1 a.m. Saturday

WHERE: Mariner’s Church, 386 Fore St., Portland

HOW MUCH: $20; 21-plus

INFO: 772-3599

n NATURE OF HALLOWEEN: Eat bugs (both sweet and savory), see live snakes and check out real teeth, claws and bones.

WHEN: 5:30 to 7:30 p.m. Tuesday

WHERE: Dorr Museum, College of the Atlantic, Bar Harbor

HOW MUCH: $3.50; $2 for children

INFO: 288-5395

DINNERS

n AN EVENING WITH POE — TALES OF MYSTERY & SUSPENSE: Actor Kirk Simpson reads Edgar Allan Poe tales by fireside while guests enjoy dinner.

WHEN: 6 p.m. Wednesday, Nov. 7 and Nov. 14

WHERE: Clay Hill Farm, 220 Clay Hill Road, Cape Neddick

HOW MUCH: $10 plus cost of dinner

INFO: 361-2272

n DUELING SPIRITS DINNER: Psychic Vicki Monroe shares insights into the inn’s paranormal activity while guests enjoy a three-course meal.

WHEN: 6:30 p.m. Wednesday

WHERE: Academe, Kennebunk Inn, 45 Main St.

HOW MUCH: $68 plus tip

INFO: 985-3351

SHOWS

n SCREENING OF “HALLOWEEN”: Watch John Carpenter’s 1978 horror masterpiece on the big screen in HD.

WHEN: 7 p.m. Thursday

WHERE: Strand Theatre, 345 Main St., Rockland

HOW MUCH: $8.50

INFO: 594-0070

n PORTLAND BALLET “HALLOWEEN SPOOKTACULAR”: Dance meets the macabre in this ballet set to “a little fright music.”

WHEN: 11 a.m. and 4 p.m. Saturday

WHERE: Westbrook Performing Arts Center, Westbrook Middle School, 471 Stroudwater St.

HOW MUCH: $17; $12 for children

INFO: portlandballet.org

n DARK FOLLIES “CARNIVAL OF DEATH”: Portland’s vaudeville favorites present a nightmare performance.

WHEN: 8 p.m. Wednesday WHERE: Bayside Bowl, 58 Alder St., Portland

HOW MUCH: $10 in advance; $12 at door

INFO: darkfollies.com

For more Halloween events, check out stories and listings elsewhere in GO.