Halloween Events in Florence 2021

Halloween creeps closer day-by-day, and with that comes a plethora of new events for the spooky season in Florence. Shows, costumes, family fun and more can be found throughout the city and beyond to celebrate the first holiday of the fall season. 

Pupi di Stac show hosted at Hard Rock Cafe

Those seeking a puppet show fit for Halloween will be happy to hear that Hard Rock Cafe is hosting one right on the final day of Florence’s spooky season. A Pupi di Stac spectacle will be the main event for Hard Rock on October 31, which will feature stringless marionettes re-enacting scary stories with a hint of irony to their performance, all the while offering sweet and savory snacks to attending families and their kids. Standard health protocol against COVID-19 will be followed, including mandatory masks and a green pass in order to gain entry. 

Pupi di Stac is a travelling puppet show in Florence that began telling Tuscan tales in 1946 with both a theatrical and comedic flare. The company was founded by Carlo Staccioli, alongside collaborators Paolo and Laura Poli. The shows have continued to run with its team of  actors, directors, set designers and many more people who help to bring out stories from their wooden marionettes. This performance taking place on Halloween will be titled “Giovannin senza paura,” which will run from 4 pm to 6 pm.

Tickets will cost €20 for adults and €15 for children up to age 10 (along with a booking fee), while infants up to 2 years old can attend for free. In order to make a reservation, check the booking portal on Hard Rock Cafe Firenze’s website. 

For adults, a costume event will also be hosted later on Halloween night. Attendees will dress up in costumes to participate in a quiz game along with their meal. The questions will tackle horror, monsters and Halloween-related history, all of which will be  in Italian. While the second shift has been sold out, tickets are still available for the first shift that takes place from 7 to 9 pm. 

Visitors will be served a starter, their choice of a main dish, then ending with an ice cream for dessert. Tickets cost €30 for the three courses plus a soft drink, or €35 for the meal along with a soft drink and beer. To book a reservation, sign up on the event’s information page before the seats run out.

St. James Celebrates Library Reopening with a Halloween Party

After a year and a half, the Children’s Lending Library has reopened its doors every Sunday since October 17 and the Saint James Episcopal Church wishes to celebrate this milestone by hosting a Halloween gathering. On October 31, from 4 to 5:30 pm, kids get to be part of a costume parade, listen to readings at the library and participate in games such as mummy bowling. Food and drink will not be served. All activities will take place in the garden of the church and in the case of rain, the gathering will be cancelled.

The Children’s Lending Library was founded in 1973 that tailors its selection of literature to English speaking children of all ages. It contains both books and DVDs that are curated by the Florence community. Prior to the pandemic, the library has held group readings as well as holiday parties for every Easter, Halloween and Christmas, which it plans to continue moving from this event onward. The library will open every Sunday to its members from 10 am to 12:30 pm, with plans to resume its former operating hours and book reading sessions. 

This celebration will be open to present and future members of the library. For families who are not yet members, a deposit of €15 will be requested at the church entrance, which will count as the membership deposit for all of 2022 and allow entrance. For more information on how to join the library and attend St. James this Halloween, contact 3333271116 on WhatApp for more details. 

Mercato Centrale

For families with a sweet tooth, the Mercato Centrale is holding a free workshop teaching how to create Halloween-themed desserts. On October 31 at 4 pm, the Lorenzo dei Medici Cooking School will demonstrate how to make sugary biscuits to kids. 

For a greater sense of festivity, children are encouraged to wear Halloween masks for the end of the event where all of the biscuits are handed out in a trick-or-treat fashion. Registration is required to gain entry, which can be done by emailing info.firenze@mercatocentrale.it along with asking for additional information if needed.

Themed Films

The Adams Family 2, bringing to life the creepy characters of Morticia and her family will be showing at the Cinemas Adriano, Fiamma, Marconi, UCI and The Space in the Florence metropolitan area.

Festival in a Castle: Castello di Ristonchi

For something a bit more out-of-the-way, visitors can find a large event taking place in a 1000-year old castle in Pelago. On October 30, the Castello di Ristonchi is the setting for a day-long festival that has a little something for everybody. The activities are plentiful and varied for guests of all ages. Starting at 11 am, face painting, games and crafts will last until 1 pm, followed by a pizza making party using the castle’s stone oven until 2:30 pm. This is followed by the Haunted Hike at 2:30, trick-or-treating around the castle at 3:30 pm, and then a costume parade and contest. The event will conclude with a monster mash dance party in the castle’s dungeon called the Rave Cave from 5 to 7 pm.

For a nighttime grown-up occasion, a party is being hosted on the same day following the family festival. 7:30 pm will see guests treated to an aperitivo, followed by another make-your-own pizza party at 8:30 pm. A contest will be held judging all of the guests’ costumes at 10 pm, which will be preceded by a party in the Rave Cave at 10:30 pm. 

Castello di Ristonchi was commissioned in 900 A.D., built to watch over the Tuscan hills. The entire complex shows its history as a site for monks, war, and the continuous work of stonemasons over the years. 

Tickets for the family visit cost €25 for adults, €15 for children (ages 3-17), and free admission for those age 2 or under. The nighttime party for those over 18 costs €35. For booking your ticket or for more information, check the event page on Ristonchi’s Facebook page.   (nelson matos)