Not-So-Scary Haunted Houses and Halloween Fun on Long Island
If you're looking to get spooked this Halloween, Long Island is home to many haunted houses that are up to the task. While they range from the kid-friendly to the downright creepy, here we've rounded up a dozen spots offering child-friendly, socially distanced, not-too-spooky haunted houses and Halloween events for your consideration. So mask up and get out to enjoy these thrills and chills. Keep in mind that even the tamest of these can sometimes be too much for a more sensitive child, so come prepared with a backup plan in case your child needs to leave quickly.
As a reminder, please click through to the individual venues to see the latest social distancing guidelines and ticketing policies, as many require advanced reservations to help with crowd control. Don't forget to sign up for our weekly newsletter to get posts like this delivered to your inbox.
The Woodland Halloween Display at the Sands Point Preserve moves outside this year. Photo courtesy of Sands Point Preserve
Not-So-Haunted Houses and Halloween Displays in Nassau County
Woodland Halloween Display — Port Washington
Saturday, October 17
The Woodland Halloween Display at the Sands Point Preserve is moving to new digs in 2020: Find it outside in the Phil Dejana Learning Center's Outdoor Classroom, where families can walk through the exhibition while maintaining safe social distancing. Costumes are encouraged, and children receive a Halloween gift and a small pumpkin to take home.
Halloween Happenings at Stew Leonard's — East Meadow & Farmingdale
Daily through Saturday, October 31
Stew Leonard's locations invite little ghouls and goblins to its drive-thru Halloween celebration! Cars follow a path through more than a dozen family-friendly Halloween-themed scenes featuring inflatable characters, located in each location's parking lot just steps from Stew's pumpkin patch. Costumed kids who visit during Halloween week receive a FREE ice cream cone and treat bag at checkout...if they say the magic words.
Enjoy pumpkins, bounce houses, and more at Kids "Not So Scary" Days at Bayville Adventure Park. Photo courtesy of the park
Kids Not-So-Scary Days — Bayville
Saturdays and Sundays through Sunday, November 8
During weekend daylight hours, Bayville Adventure Park's scream park tones it down for kid-friendly fun. Families enjoy a funhouse, mirror maze, Halloween express train ride, pumpkin bounce, mini golf, rock climbing, bumper boat safari, spooky treetop adventure, and more.
Halloween Village — Jericho
Fridays, Saturdays, and Sundays through Saturday, October 31
The Milleridge Inn hosts this family-friendly Halloween fest. Book your tickets online in advance to enjoy the haunted house, pumpkin patch, spooky train, funhouse maze, escape room, hay maze, and more. Social distancing protocols are in place.
For the best view of the intricate details, book your Great Jack O'Lantern Blaze tickets for after dark. Photo courtesy of the Great Jack O'Lantern Blaze
The Great Jack O'Lantern Blaze — Old Bethpage
Thursdays through Sundays through Sunday, November 1
Featuring more than 7,000 hand-carved pumpkins in scenes scattered through the self-guided, one-way pathways, orchards, and grounds of Old Bethpage Village Restoration, the Great Jack O'Lantern Blaze Long Island is a visually striking, aesthetically inspiring walkthrough exhibit. While the Blaze isn't inherently scary, young children or those with sensory issues might be overwhelmed by the darkness, crowds, and special effects.
Spooky Fest — Rockville Centre
Fridays, Saturdays, and Sunday nights through Sunday, November 1
The 2020 Spooky Fest at The Center for Science Teaching and Learning celebrates the Halloween season with scary and non-scary attractions for all ages. Wooded paths, exhibits, and festivities with eerie lighting, special effects, and costumed characters greet visitors. Timed-entry tickets are required to help with social distancing measures.
Visit Otto the Ghost at Hick's Nurseries for some socially distanced photo ops. Photo by Nichole Kurz
Otto's Special Pumpkin — Westbury
Daily through Sunday, November 1
Head to Hick's Nurseries, where Otto the Friendly Ghost makes his annual appearance, posing this year for socially distanced photos. As always, there's an animated tale geared toward little ones. Admission is FREE, but nonperishable food donations for Long Island Cares are encouraged. Fall food is available for takeout. Social distancing protocols are in place to ensure the safety of all guests and staff.
Haunted Houses and Halloween Displays in Suffolk County
Not So Scary Halloween Adventure — Bellport
Saturdays and Sundays through Saturday, October 31
Head to Gateway's Haunted Playhouse during daylight hours on weekends for an outdoor walkthrough adventure where you're sure to encounter less-than-scary characters like fairies, mini-monsters, superheroes, and bats. Trade screams for squeals in this more sweet-than-spooky trek catering to kids ages 3 and older.
Halloween Spooktacular — Smithtown
Friday, October 23
The Sweetbriar Nature Center invites visitors ages 8 and older to this evening program, where you'll encounter some of the nature center's residents, plus visit a ghostly graveyard, and play games all while listening to a spooky soundtrack. Local nature trails take on a haunted evening air. Social distancing rules apply, and advance tickets are recommended.
Haunted Hatchery — Cold Spring Harbor
Saturday, October 24
The Cold Spring Harbor Fish Hatchery invites all costumed characters on a not-too-scary tour of the Haunted Hatchery. The highlight, undoubtedly, is the promise of trick-or-treating on the grounds. You can also spot black catfish swimming in the inky outdoor ponds and see pumpkin seed sunfish living in the aquarium tanks.
RELATED: Fall Fun Guide for LI families
The Long Island Aquarium is filled with not-too-scary Halloween decorations and even has a penguin costume parade. Photo courtesy of the aquarium
Bats, Barnacles, and Broomsticks — Riverhead
Saturday, October 31
Visit the Long Island Aquarium for its annual Halloween fete while maintaining social distancing. This event features trick-or-treating, a sea lion show, and the always-popular penguin costume parade. Kids in costume receive reduced admission. Reservations are a must.
Tales, Tails, and Treats — Smithtown
Saturday, October 31
If you have wee ones who were too young for Sweetbriar's other Halloween happening, consider registering for this even more tame kid event, geared toward ages 2-7. The afternoon program lets little ones get up close to the nature center's residents, explore a ghostly garden, play games, and trick-or-treat alongside animals and costumed characters. Please wear a face mask when near other visitors.
A version of this post was originally published in 2012. It is updated annually.
Places featured in this article:
The Center for Science Teaching and Learning
Long Island Aquarium
Sands Point Preserve