Why this is awesome: Due to the lockdown restrictions imposed last year, I didn't get a chance to fully celebrate Halloween the way that I'd hoped. Not a major inconvenience given everything else that was happening in the world, but I was still disappointed given the special celestial circumstances that came with it -- namely the fact that it would be the first Blue Moon Halloween in 19 years.
Fast forward to 2021 (and last month) when I tried to make up for the missed opportunity by marking All Hallows' Eve with a special road trip. In short, I live within an hour's drive of the Hudson River Valley, home to the towns of Sunnyside, Tarrytown, and Sleepy Hollow. And each year, during the month of October, these towns along with Irvington and Croton-on-Hudson hold a lot of Halloween-themed events for literary, spirituality and history nerds like myself.
So I reserved a spot or two for some of the festivities on Sunday, October 31st, and traveled to the area to embrace the culture and folklore. My first stop was a visit to the Armour-Stiner Octagon House in Irvington, New York. This special abode was built back in the 1880s, when octagonal homes and buildings were all the rage, and it's one of the few in America that are still standing, and the only one that has its small dome and cupola still intact.
You see that beautifully decorated dome with the picturesque cupola and spire on top was a major draw among the spiritualist set back during the turn-of-the-century. And within the home's walls lies a room where people would gather to hold seances, read tarot cards, and dabble in a host of occult-related activities that would later earn the house the reputation of being haunted.
And me being me, I absolutely loved every moment of the tour and the tales that came with it. Although I chose this stylized image for this month's Lotus Moment, trust me, it does not do the home justice.
The space is open throughout the year for different themed tours. I highly recommend a visit any time of the year, but if you plan it just right, a visit on Halloween would be even better.
But if you can't find your way to this neck of the woods any time soon, be sure to check out more photos of the house online.
Image: The Roof of the Octagon House by Candace Nicholson