Monday, November 1, 2010

Ahoy! Our Halloween 2010

Without further ado, allow me to present to you the official W. Family Halloween photo, featuring Captain Achilles:

That dog just loves to dress up. He's a natural!

But let's back up! Did everyone enjoy their Halloween weekend? We had a great time! Last year we went all out with costumes and hit up the Village Halloween Parade, but this year we were a little more low-key. It was nice, actually.

Our celebration began on Friday night. Last year we had heard that Trinity Church does an "All Hallows' Eve" event, including a happy hour in the cemetery followed by a screening of a silent movie with live organ accompaniment in the cathedral. Last year's movie was The Phantom of the Opera, which would have been incredible to see. But, we missed it last year, so we made plans to check out this event this year. And it was so worth it!

We started with the Haunted Hamilton Happy Hour in the cemetery. They had spooky decorations up, free spiked apple cider, music playing, and creepy characters walking around. We got our cider and spent some time wandering through the cemetery, looking at all the very old headstones, including the grave of Alexander Hamilton (hence, the name of the happy hour). It was spooky and fun!

Eric in the festive Halloween atmosphere

Spooky look up at the church

The cemetery

Alexander Hamilton's grave

Enjoying cider in the cemetery

More happy hour fun

Looking up at the church from the cemetery

After happy hour we went into the church for this year's silent movie, The Cabinet of Dr. Caligari. I am no movie expert, but Wikipedia tells me that this 1920s German Expressionist film is credited with having introduced the twist ending in cinema, and this movie is often considered one of the greatest horror movies of all time. I had never heard of it, so I enjoyed seeing a new (old) movie - it did have an unexpected twist ending, and the set design seemed to be a precursor to Tim Burton's style. The most incredible part, however, was the organ accompaniment. They set up an organ at the front of the church next to the main movie screen, and Trinity organist Robert Ridgell played along with the show. He did a fabulous job. It was such a cool thing to see, and hear!

The main movie screen at the front of the church, with the organ to the left

Show time!

The organist

VIDEO: A few seconds of the movie with organ accompaniment

The only disappointing part of the evening was knowing how much fun we would have had at this event last year, but we missed it!

After the movie, we continued our awesome night. Now, this part doesn't have anything to do with Halloween, but our night as a whole was such a fun New York evening I just have to clump it all together. The movie finished at 8:30, and at that point we just didn't feel like going home. Since we were downtown anyway, we decided to walk down to Battery Park and check out the Statue of Liberty at night.

As we made our way there, we passed the Bull, which was surprisingly not surrounded by tourists. We took full advantage of the situation and each hopped on for a photo! I have no idea how I got up there (except that I had a lot of help from Eric) and I definitely got off by sliding down his nose, which is not ideal. Eric, however, seamlessly climbed up and hopped down. Impressive!


We then made our way down to Battery Park, which was also very deserted except for some fisherman along the water. As we made our way south, we saw a Staten Island Ferry approaching, so we decided to run and catch it so we could take a quick nighttime ride. We made it just in time, and found a seat outside (in the cold!) so we could check out lower Manhattan and the Statue of Liberty all lit up at night. It was beautiful.

The best shot we could get of Lady Liberty at night

Huddled together to stay warm on the ferry!

We ended up getting held up in Staten Island for a half hour before we could ride back, but we were plenty entertained by the many costumed people waiting for the ferry to Manhattan for their Halloween celebrations. Great people watching!

When we got back to Manhattan, we took the subway back to our neck of the woods. On the way home, Eric was hungry, so we decided to finally stop for some street food from the vendor next to our Blockbuster. Weird as it sounds, we've been wanting to do that for months, because every time we pass by there that food cart smells so good. We finally tried it, and it was tasty!

Mmm, street food!

It was just such a cool New Yorky night, because the event we had planned (at Trinity) was fabulous, plus we did so many awesome things just on the spur of the moment after our planned event! I love those nights, when you never know where the city will lead you. There's just no place like New York.

Anyway, back to Halloween. Our celebration continued yesterday on Halloween proper with our annual Pumpkin Carving and Dog Humiliation rituals. Achilles was gifted a pirate costume this year, and in furtherance of the theme, Eric found a great pirate ship design for us to carve into our pumpkin. We did the usual routine: Eric found the design, I printed it, Eric cut the top off the pumpkin, we both scooped the goop, I poked holes in the pumpkin to outline the design, he carved it, and I cleaned up the pumpkin shavings afterwards. Then light, step back, and admire. Eric did a great carving job, as always!

Scooping the goop

Our little family sitting around the table, planning our pumpkin design

Eric carving the pumpkin, and Achilles looking tortured yet festive

Hard at work

Our pirate ship pumpkin!

Halloween decor

As we carved our pumpkin, we also sipped hot spiked apple cider (yuuuummmm) and watched It's The Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown. Is that festive or what?

Mmmm, cider!

I love this movie.

When the pumpkin was finished, that meant it was time to get the dog into his costume of the year. Of course, he wasn't just satisfied wearing the pirate costume with only the shirt and hat it came with. No, no. This dog is detail-oriented. He also needed an earring, an eye patch, and a treasure chest filled with loot. We also considered giving him a bottle of rum, but he's only 7 years old, after all!

Captain Achilles with his treasure and pirate ship

I'm sorry, but is he cute or what???

And just to prove that we don't torture him with no reward, Achilles got a Halloween treat after the photo shoot was finished:

Treats for his tricks!

And that was our Halloween! Another fun one for the record books!


AD said...

Great time! Adorable pooch, er, sea dog!

Becky said...

Aaargh! What a great looking pirate! You guys just have way too much fun!