Halloween 2010 in Washington, D.C.

`Tis the season for Halloween in Washington, D.C., and with it comes the time-honored tradition of adults playing dress-up in costumes, visiting D.C. haunted houses, trick-or-treating and partying all night. From the best Halloween costumes and costume shops in D.C. to great evening-of festivities, here are our picks for Halloween night in D.C.

Updated: November 29, 2010

Halloween Costumes in D.C.

Backstage Inc

545 8th St SE, Washington, DC 20003

A theatrical superstore located in Capital Hill, Backstage stocks all the latest in rental and for-purchase costumes, makeup and accessories. Beyond costumes, the store also caters to theater students and enthusiasts with scripts and screenplays.

Meeps & Aunt Neensie's Vintage

2104 18TH St NW, Washington, DC 20009

A cute vintage shop named for the founding owner's grandmother, Meeps houses a large collection of vintage clothes from the '70s and earlier. In the weeks leading up to Halloween, Meeps acquires a selection of costumes and wigs perfect for transforming into something or someone else.

Halloween Parties in D.C.

Clarendon Ballroom

3185 Wilson Blvd, Arlington, VA 22201

Late-night partying hits it big at the Monster Bash, one of the largest and most popular parties in the D.C. area. Complete with live music and a costume contest, this Arlington hot spot is the place to see and be seen for Halloween in D.C. Last year, tickets were $20 and were available in advance at the door. Email info@hiballevents.com for updates on this year's celebration as information becomes available closer to the Oct. 30 celebration. http://bit.ly/avcBwC

Historical Society-Wa DC

801 K St NW, Washington, DC 20001

Featuring cover band White Ford Bronco, the Historical Society's party is pricier than most at $75 but comes with the benefit of an open bar. Complete with a bar tab prize for best costume, this party is the classy place to spend the year's spookiest night. Tickets are available on the event website until Oct. 30, but are likely to sell out in advance. http:// bit.ly/bLqMlG

Family Halloween Fun

Butler's Orchard

22200 Davis Mill Rd, Germantown, MD 20876

Throughout October, the Pumpkin Festival at this Germantown orchard is a fun place for families and those looking for a more laid-back way to celebrate Halloween. Hayrides, slides, and a maze make this the ideal spot to sneak away from the city for some Halloween fun. The Pumpkin Festival is open Saturdays and Sundays, as well as Columbus Day, from 10am to 5pm during the month of October and costs $10. http://bit.ly/dwXO1a

Great Country Farms

18780 Foggy Bottom Rd, Bluemont, VA 20135

On Oct. 29 and 30, more than 1,500 jack-o?-lanterns carved by local school children light up the night at this Bluemont, Va., festival. Timed for early evening (the pumpkins are lit between 6pm and 7:30pm), it's a charming way for families to spend some time together before putting young children to bed. Tickets are $10, with children two and under admitted free of charge. http://bit.ly/bMFZlM

Halloween Ghost Tours and Haunted Houses in D.C.

US Department of the Treasury

1500 Pennsylvania Ave NW, Washington, DC 20220

For a new twist on Halloween adventures, join other ghost hunters on a scavenger hunt around the city on the evenings of Oct. 23 or 30 and learn ghost stories of famous D.C. residents such as Abraham Lincoln and Abigail Adams. Got kids? Watson Adventures offers family hunts as well. Adult tickets cost $22.50 for the hunt. Check the website for tickets and more information. http://bit.ly/avUs4U

Lafayette Park

Pennsylvania Ave NW & Jackson Pl NW, Washington, DC 20006

For those more interested in experiencing the paranormal, DC Ghost Tours offers professional tours of Lafayette Park, referred to as ?Tragedy Square.? Daily tours depart from the entrance to the park and cost $15 for adults and $8 for children. People looking to learn about the real ghosts and hauntings of D.C. will appreciate the tour's coverage of the Hay-Adams Hotel and the White House. http://bit.ly/943QaP

Bennett's Curse

8024 Max Blobs Park Rd, Jessup, MD 20794

Open Thursday through Sunday evenings and more frequently during the week of Halloween, Bennett's Curse is a popular haunted house in Jessup, MD for people seeking a good spook. Composed of two main attractions, the ?House of the Vampyres? and the ?Sanctuary of Insanity,? this haunted house is sure to be spooky. During the last weekends in October, lines run long, so be prepared to wait for entrance or purchase the $25 tickets in advance. http://bit.ly/fom0h