Halloween NYC Style - St. John the Divine, The Cabinet of Dr. Caligari, Procession of Ghouls and Mexican Food!

This is a repost with updated info for this year's Halloween extravaganza at Saint John the Divine in New York City. It's so popular tickets sell out fast.

Hotel Note: If in need of a hotel on the Upper West Side, check out:  The Excelsior Hotel

St. John the Divine
Located at 112th Street and Amsterdam Avenue, this magnificent cathedral is home to the Episcopal Diocese of New York. The fourth largest Christian church in the world, it is 600 feet long and the inside nave climbs to a staggering 124 feet in height.

Construction of this Byzantine-Romanesque style cathedral began in 1892 but in 1909 they switched to a Gothic design. After a devastating fire in 2001, restoration still continues. Locals call it "Saint John the Unfinished."

View from the People's Garden next to the cathedral.

Along with regular services, there are many events and tours people can enjoy including one down into the crypts. (Bring your own flashlight.)

Presented this year on Friday October, 30, 2015 @ 7:00pm and 10:pm - the cathedral dresses up for the holiday...

and shows a different horror film each year. This year it's the unforgettable symphony of terror -  Nosferatu. Other years it rotates with Phantom of the Opera and The Cabinet of Dr. Caligari.


A movie screen is suspended from the ceiling ...

and Timothy Brumfield accompanies this spooky 1922 silent film about Bram Stoker's mysterious Count Orlok (Max Schreck) by playing the Great Organ.

The movie is shown first ...

and then there is the Procession of the Ghouls created by Ralph Lee and the Mettawee River Theater Company. Emerging through theatrical fog are all sorts of fantastical costumed characters and larger-than-life puppets.

She? He? It...was actually an extraordinary cellist.
Two Halloween's ago, I shared this fantastical treat with me was my sister Janet and friend Bud Santora. Afterwards we all agreed we wanted a "quiet-ish" restaurant for dinner and chose the newly opened Mexican Festival Restaurant located at 102nd Street and Broadway.

First off we all ordered margaritas. Twice.

And the fresh guacamole made at your table. Perfection!

Janet had the Enchiladas de Mole  - three fresh corn tortillas filled with chicken breast with queso fresco and white onion, rice and beans.

Bud ordered the Quesadillas de Espinacs filled with spinach, Oaxaca cheese and epazote leaf. (Epazote leaf is similar to anise, fennel and tarragon but stronger.)

And I had the Chef's special - Surf and Turf and Turf and Turf and Turf. Grilled shrimp, chicken, sausage, steak, and pork with scallions and cactus served in a hot lava bowl with freshly made tortillas and spicy hot sauce. It was delicious and plenty was leftover for lunch the next day. And the next. And the next.

Dizzy Notes: Friends with vestibular disorders, can you spell "dizzy"?

 L-I-V-E   M-A-R-I-A-C-H-I   B-A-N-D

No, I'm not in pain, just hiding my face.
They were impeccably dressed, very talented...and loud. Heck, I was already spinning after the movie, subtitles, lights, lack of lights, sounds, crowds of people, and ghouls at the cathedral so I said to myself, "Relax and go with it." (Sometimes we have to live dangerously.)

Tail end of the Procession of Ghouls

Halloween at Saint John's, as always, was a ... religious experience and DIVINE!


  1. This was a fun night! The pictures tell the story; I loved the cathedral and the procession of ghouls, and dinner later was just right. Thanks Bob and Bud for the Halloween festivities

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