The 20th annual Sea Witch Halloween and Fiddlers Festival will be held Friday-Sunday, Oct. 23-25, in Rehoboth Beach, with a theme of “Spellbound for 20 Years.”
The festival kicks off Friday afternoon with free train rides at The Grove Park near the traffic circle on Rehoboth Avenue from 3 to 7 p.m., and a free outdoor screening of “Kung Fu Panda” at 7 p.m. in the park. Attendees should bring lawn chairs or blankets.
Fiddlers and banjo players alike provide a full day of foot-stompin’ entertainment and vie for cash prizes. There are both adults’ and children’s competitions for best fiddle, bluegrass and banjo playing. The Fiddlers Festival is held from 1 to 5 p.m., Saturday, Oct. 24, at the Rehoboth Beach Convention Hall on Rehoboth Avenue. The Fiddlers Festival is sponsored in part by the Cape Gazette newspaper.
Walkers in the costume parade will line up at Rehoboth Beach Convention Hall, and selected motorized/rolling units line up at State Street. The parade route follows Rehoboth Avenue to the Rehoboth Bandstand and ends on Rehoboth Avenue at Village by the Sea. All parade participants are encouraged to pick up a raffle ticket at the Village by the Sea Shops immediately following the parade for a prize drawing. Trophies are awarded to the judge’s favorites, and all parade participants receive a ribbon. The parade begins at 11 a.m., Oct. 24, and is weather dependent. The size of the parade no longer allows for a rain date.
Contestants and their handlers in the costumed pet parade should begin lining up at noon, Sunday, Oct. 25, at Grenoble Place on the north end of the Boardwalk; the parade heads for the Bandstand on Rehoboth Avenue at 1 p.m. Only leashed or carried pets will be received on the stage. No livestock, wild animals or reptiles are permitted in the contest. Judges’ favorites are called onto the Bandstand where prizes are awarded.
The Maryland Rough Riders will provide musically choreographed horse performances and drills on the beach at 5 p.m., Oct. 24 and 3 p.m., Oct. 25. These cowboys become beach boys for the day parading and exhibiting their dexterity on horseback, in full cowboy attire.
The Sea Witch Hunt begins at 1 p.m., Oct. 24, with hunters gathering clues to find the location of the Sea Witch before the 5 p.m. deadline. The earliest correct guess wins a cash prize. The winner is announced at the Bandstand on Saturday evening at 5 p.m.
Live entertainment is scheduled at the Rehoboth Beach Bandstand on Saturday and Sunday. This year’s entertainment includes Spooky Spats Family Show, The Funny Guy, Southern Delaware School of the Arts’ steel drum band, “Steel the Show,” Delaware Comedy Theatre, Jamboree Boys, magic shows and more. The event also includes arts and crafts vendors Saturday and Sunday.
A 5K race is expected to draw more than 500 runners, including entire families, some in costume. Prizes are presented not only for time, but also for the best costumes. Past runners have included cartoon characters, cheerleaders, various farm animals and monsters. The 5K Race begins at The Grove Park at 9 a.m., October 25. The Webfooters Walk will take place on Saturday and Sunday; registration/walk starts at 8 a.m., and hundreds join in.
Old-fashioned beach games including broom tossing, peanut on the nose race, apple push, pumpkin dash and more will begin at 2 p.m., Saturday. Children can also have their picture taken with Frankendude and participate in a pirate treasure trail hunt.
For more information, contact the Rehoboth Beach-Dewey Beach Chamber of Commerce at 800-441-1329, Ext. 0, or 227-2233, Ext. 0, or email Rehoboth@beach-fun.com. Visit beach-fun.com for program information. Accommodation packages are available. The event is funded in part by Southern Delaware Tourism.