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Town-Wide Festival Honoring Westfield’s Charles Addams Returns for its Sixth Year

WESTFIELD, NJ – SEPTEMBER 7, 2023 – It’s back! AddamsFest will return to Westfield for its sixth consecutive October as the destination event of the season. Once again, the Town will be transformed by this uniquely exciting celebration honoring its own Charles Addams and his penchant for the macabre with a wide variety of events.

Born in 1912 and raised in Westfield, Charles Addams was one of the country’s premier cartoonists, with his work prominently featured in The New Yorker. His most successful creation, The Addams Family, was inspired by his hometown surroundings. The characters that began as illustrations grew into a television series, a live action movie franchise, a Broadway musical, two Addams Family animated movies, and the highly successful 2022 Wednesday series on Netflix. What better place to honor Addams’ talent and creativity than the town where he grew up?

This year’s AddamsFest theme is WILD. Inspired by the animals (real or imagined) that populate so many of Charles Addams’ works, curious creatures will appear through the festival, including its art exhibit, masquerade ball, and more.

“The idea of this theme came up during a pandemic visit to Addams’ home in Sagaponack”, said Councilwoman Dawn Mackey, Chair of AddamsFest. “In awe of the many animal-themed memorabilia items displayed throughout the house from trips to Africa taken by Addams’ wife, Tee, the AddamsFest team immediately knew that we had to bring this concept to Westfield. We are so excited to see what wild things our community creates!”

Mark your calendars for a variety of events to be held throughout an October like no other!


Sights to See

The Addams Family House on Mindowaskin Pond

Early October 

385 East Broad Street 

Sponsored by Erin Ben-Hayon, Realtor

Be sure to take a photo of the floating Addams Family house on Mindowaskin Pond. Playing off a beloved Westfield tradition, this Halloween house is a nod to the replica of the Presbyterian Church that signals the holiday season in December. 


The Wicked Windows of Westfield

Throughout October 

Downtown Westfield 

Sponsored by Jean Marie Morgan, Realtor


The Wicked Windows of Westfield transforms Downtown Westfield’s storefronts into delightful Halloween displays. Look for some of Charles Addams’ favorite characters peering out from the windows, as well as spooky decorations on the street lamps and special appearances by the Addams Family themselves! 

Looking to participate? Sign up by September 13 to create hauntingly delightful art on Westfield's downtown storefronts. All artistic abilities can lend a hand -- scout troops, sports teams, and other community groups are welcome! 


Haunt Your House Contest: Day and Night

Registration Opens September 10 for the First 25 Daytime Entries and 25 Night Entries; Community Voting Opens October 12

Throughout Westfield 

Sponsored by The Mavins Group

The competition gets stiffer every year! To make the driving routes of the entries more manageable, and to take the competition to the next level, there will be two contests this year – one for daytime haunts, and one for haunts by night. Community members will tour the routes and vote for their favorites using an online map of participating homes from October 12 through October 29. Think your haunt has what it takes to win? Registration opens on Sunday, September 10, at 7:00 PM, for the first 25 houses to enroll in each category.


Addams-Inspired Murals

Central Avenue Underpass


Public murals breathe life, art, and inspiration into their surrounding community. The Westfield Public Arts Commission unveiled the Central Avenue Mural Gallery in October, 2021. These murals showcase the work of local artists on both sides of the underpass on Central Avenue, providing a bright and colorful backdrop to revive and reimagine this public space. One entire span of the underpass features the theme Inspired by Addams, creating an indelible mark not just on the walls of the underpass, but on Westfield’s history.


The Gallery on Elm Street

122 Elm Street

Friday through Sunday, October 13-29

Fridays, 5:00 - 8:00 PM

Saturdays, 12:00 - 6:00 PM

Sundays, 12:00 - 5:00 PM

Step off the street into a wildly enchanting, drenched in surprise, designed to delight and disturb experience. The elaborate deco serves as the backdrop for the incredible art on display in two exciting exhibits. Look for pop-up events featuring music, art demonstrations, and more throughout the festival. 


WILD: The Curious Creatures of Charles Addams and Edward Gorey

Lions and tigers and unicorns (oh my!). Cats, elephants, and birds grace the art of both Charles Addams and Edward Gorey. But so do dragons, a boggerslosh, and other beasts of the night too terrifying to name. This year, AddamsFest goes WILD celebrating Addams, Gorey, and the curious creatures featured in their work. Alongside original art by these icons, the WILD exhibit will include student-made works from the AddamsFest Curious Creatures Sculpture Class that was held in late August.


The Addams Animal Menagerie

There’s no menagerie quite like an Addams menagerie, especially one that features sculptures painted in fantastical detail by local artists. Created in partnership with the Westfield Public Arts Commission and AddamsFest, these animals will become fan favorites.


Release Your Inner Addams 

Morticia & Gomez’s Masquerade Ball 

Friday, October 13 (of course!), 8:00 - 11:00 PM

James Ward Mansion

Presented by Premier Sponsor HBC | Streetworks Development

Libations provided by the House of Wine & Liquor

Prepare to be transported to an eccentric world of mischief and macabre. Join Morticia & Gomez Addams in high style to feast on Addams-inspired gourmet fare, sip smoldering libations, and dance the night away in an interactive setting. Perhaps the most elegantly odd event of AddamsFest, guests should dress to kill – or at least to maim. 


Spellbound: An Evening of Hypnosis 

Thursday, October 19, 7:00 PM

The James Ward Mansion

169 East Broad Street

You are getting creeeeppppyyyy. Hypnosis is said to bring on a relaxing dream-like state for its participants. But it also brings on smiles for those witnessing the hilarity! Whether you volunteer to be hypnotized or watch from the wings, you’re guaranteed a laugh-filled evening with Hypnotist Karl Wirtz. 


Charlie’s Ale Garden 

Saturday, October 21, 5:00 - 11:00 PM

The Westfield Armory

500 Rahway Avenue, Westfield

Presented by Premier Sponsor HBC | Streetworks Development

Wonder Game Area, presented by Wonder

Sponsored, in part, by Alpha Fit Club, The Garage Gym, and Salad House 

It wouldn’t be AddamsFest without Charlie’s Ale Garden at the Armory! The joint will be jumping with fantastic entertainment, including a great line-up of local bands and headliner Saved by the 90s. The most in-demand event of the season will once again feature beer and wine poured by Harvest Restaurant Group, food for purchase from a variety of food trucks, and the Wonder Game Area. 


Goth at the Gallery

Sunday, October 29, 5:00 PM

The Gallery on Elm Street

122 Elm Street

For the first time ever, AddamsFest is partnering with Petunia Rocks to produce a fashion show to delight the Wednesday or Enid in you. Enjoy themed refreshments and entertainment while our models  showcase gothic outfits and accessories which will be available for purchase.


Charlie’s Curiosities

From crossbows to cemeteries, Charles Addams was a man of many talents and even more interests. Delve into the often eccentric and always interesting life and passions of Addams with this annual series of tours and conversations. 


Lantern Cemetery Tours at the Presbyterian Church of Westfield

Saturday, October 14 

Tours run in 10-minute intervals from 5:00 - 6:30 PM

While other kids his age were out frolicking with friends, a young Charles Addams spent his time hanging out in Westfield's oldest cemetery (of course he did). Take a lantern tour of these historic grounds, hosted by The Presbyterian Church of Westfield. 


Charles Addams Heritage Trail Tour 

Sunday, October 22, 10:00 - 11:00 AM

Meet in front of the Center for Creativity at the Rialto

250 East Broad Street

Charles Addams was just like any other kid who grew up in Westfield in the early 1900s…except when he wasn’t. Step back in time to see the sights of Westfield circa 1920 as you retrace Addams’ steps from his home to school, downtown, and even to the cemetery where he spent his lazy afternoons (we TOLD you he wasn’t exactly like the other kids!).   


Gorey, Addams, and their Animal Instincts

Wednesday, October 25, 7:00 PM

The Gallery on Elm Street

122 Elm Street

Charles Addams and Edward Gorey shared more than just penchant for the peculiar. They also enjoyed a fondness for fur coats and a deep love of their animal companions (it’s complicated…). Join The Tee & Charles Addams Foundation’s Kevin Miserrocchi and The Edward Gorey Charitable Trust’s Will Baker as they delve into the unusual similarities and extreme differences between these two iconic artists. 



Fun for the Wednesdays and Pugsleys in All of Us

The Wild Walk

Pet Parade, Costume Contest, and Adoption Event

Saturday, October 14, 1:00 - 3:00 PM

Downtown Westfield 

Calling all dogs, cats, and crocodiles (hey, this IS AddamsFest, after all)! Dress up Rover in their most frightening frock and join us for our pet parade and costume contest! The event kicks off on Quimby Street with registration, and judging taking place between 1:00 and 2:00 PM. While there, guests can meet their newest best friend at the pet adoption event, hosted by Wise Animal Rescue. The parade begins at 2:15 and takes revelers a short distance to Atlantic Health’s parking lot on Central Avenue, where contest winners will be revealed. In addition to best pet costume, prizes will also be handed out for Best Owner-Pet Combo and more. It’s going to be a doggone good time!


Addams Family Fun Day

Sunday, October 15, 10:00 AM –  4:00 PM 

Downtown Westfield 

Sponsored, in part, by Oceans Orthodontics and the Westfield Educators Association

From Pugsley to Grandmama, there's something fun for everyone at Addams Family Fun Day. Head on over to Quimby Street in Downtown Westfield, which will be closed to cars for a day of family fun -- including Addams Family character visits, live performances, incredible displays by the Maniac Pumpkin Carvers, delightful bubble demonstrations, readings of Tonight, Tonight is Halloween by local author Peter Lyons, pumpkin decorating, activities with some of local merchants, and more.

Pumpkin Decorating with the Doctors

10:00 AM - 12:00 PM

Atlantic Health Medical Group Primary Care

142 Central  Avenue

Sponsored by Atlantic Health Medical Group Primary Care and Women's Health at Westfield

Join the Addams Family and the team from Atlantic Health Medical Group Primary Care and Women's Health at Westfield for a morning of pumpkin carving, crafts, and a chance to play a life-sized game of Operation!

The Maniac Pumpkin Carvers

10:00 AM - 4:00 PM

Quimby Street

Sponsored, in part, by the Union County Board of Commissioners 

Don't miss the return of the incomparable Maniac Pumpkin Carvers -- creating stunning and unique custom pumpkin carvings that have been featured on The Late Show with Jimmy Fallon and displayed at MoMA and Yankee Stadium! Always a crowd pleaser, the Maniacs will bring their artistry back to AddamsFest to create new masterpieces before your very eyes.


Peter Lyons: Tonight, Tonight is Halloween

Every hour on the half hour, 10:30 AM - 3:30 PM

Quimby Street

Gather the children for storytime! Westfield author Peter Lyon reads from his illustrated children’s book, Tonight, Tonight is Halloween.


The Atlantic Health Youth Stage 

10:00 AM - 4:00 PM (first hour will be sensory-sensitive performances)

Quimby Street

Sponsored by Atlantic Health Medical Group Primary Care and Women's Health at Westfield

Westfield area's talented youth bands will rock all day on the Atlantic Health Youth Stage.


Ticket & Registration Information

Following are initial ticket and registration dates: 


Tickets for all remaining events are expected to be released in the first week of October. 


Further details about this year’s line-up, as well as community partner events and additional surprises, will be announced in the coming weeks. Stay tuned as the altogether ooky events continue to unfold on the AddamsFest website ( and social media channels (@addamsfest on Facebook and Instagram). For more information on sponsorship and volunteer opportunities, please email

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AddamsFest is a town-wide celebration, honoring Westfield native Charles Addams and his penchant for the macabre. This destination event of the season will take place throughout October and includes family-friendly events, lectures, exhibits, and more. 

The Premier Sponsor of AddamsFest is HBC | Streetworks Development. 

For more information, visit, or follow along on Facebook and Instagram (@addamsfest). 

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