What Is CarnEVIL?

CarnEVIL at Merriweather Park is Maryland’s Premiere Halloween Festival

On select nights from October 13th through November 5th, 2017, Merriweather Park at Symphony Woods transforms into the ultimate Halloween event. The park comes alive with horrifying mutant sideshow freaks, demented clowns, escaped circus animals and so much more. Halloween will never be the same.

Explore the Menacing Midway, complete with twisted games and prizes, sample frightful foods and spine-chilling cocktails, all while local bands and DJs keep you in the Halloween mood. The party isn’t complete though until you make your way through the multiple scare zones of the Abandoned Circus in the woods. Its dark, its creepy, and the things that live in the woods are waiting to eat meet you!

creepy clown

The Show

In the Fall of 1917, the area now known as Merriweather Post Pavilion was home to a thriving amusement park filled with smiling clowns and majestic circus animals. Unfortunately that same year, the Amusement Park’s owner, Mr. Archibald Evil, died suddenly and left the amusement park to wither and rot. As the brutal winter approached, once happy animals and performers sought shelter in the woods and were never seen again. Now, 100 years later in the hollowed grounds where Archibald died, his amusement park has come back…and they are dying to do one last show! Welcome to CarnEVIL at Merriweather Park. Hold on for your life, the performance is about to begin.

The Midway

Step right up and try your luck on the Midway at CarnEVIL. Win a prize for the little lady or the lucky fella, but whatever you do, don’t let the clowns fool you. The CarnEVIL Midway will bring back day dreams of being a kid at the carnival…and nightmares of the clowns that live under your bed. Our games of skill and chance are uniquely creepy, but we wouldn’t have it any other way!

Food & Drink

Try some of the mouth watering eats offered each night by food trucks from across the region. For festival goers 21 or over, Jailbreak Brewing has served up their most well-known brews, along with an awesome variety of Halloween themed cocktails and mocktails. No trip to the festival would be complete without a visit to the s’mores bonfire. S’mores kits are available for purchase at our souvenir stand on the main stage.


When the sun goes down, CarnEVIL’s Menacing Midway sparks to life with spine-tingling thrills. Enjoy music courtesy of our diabolical DJ; try your luck with our one-of-a-kind carnival games, like our life-sized Operation; and marvel at the inferno-defying feats of our fire dancers.  You’ve never experienced a monster mash like this before.

Event Calendar

VIP Experience

Enjoy the Ultimate CarnEVIL Experience with complimentary food and drink, and full access to the Halloween VIP Lounge. All VIP guests also receive complimentary game tickets and an exclusive CarnEVIL swag bag.

Learn More Buy VIP Suite Passes

For A Good Cause

CarnEvil at Merriweather Park is a fully immersive entertainment experience, but your dollars go to more than just entertainment.

Tell Me More

Ticket Options

Event may be too intense for young children and is not recommended for children under the age of 10. No costumes or masks allowed!
General Admission Tickets

General Admission

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VIP Suite & Passes

VIP Suite & Passes

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creepy doll in front of old haunted house

Hotels & Ticket Packages

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Know B4 U Go

You’ll Never Think of Halloween The Same Way Again,
A Few Tips & Tricks For Surviving Your Big Top Adventure.


CarnEVIL at Merriweather Park Is Like Nothing You’ve Seen Before.

  • CarnEVIL is a Haunt & Halloween festival. Come early and enjoy the music, food, drinks, roaming performers, carnival games, and then get your scare on at the Abandoned Circus.
  • All ticket holders should come at least 60 minutes before they want to enter the haunt “show” so they can experience the festival first. Feel free to enter the park any time after the gates open for the night.  The Midway area will close at 10:30 PM.
  • The festival is awesome Halloween creepy, but not so scary.
  • The Abandoned Circus on the other hand……well you’ll see soon enough.

People Will Be “DYING” To Get In. BUY YOUR TICKETS ONLINE Ahead of Time.

  • This event may sell out on certain nights—and if it does—tickets will not be available at the front gate.
  • Entry into the haunted Abandoned Circus is on a first come, first served basis. Don’t want to wait on line? No worries; visit the CarnEVIL Midway and play some games. When the lines die down, hop on over to the haunt and get your scare on.
  • Congratulations! You have been doing good cardio workouts if you managed to survive your adventure through the Abandoned Circus in the woods. Now, let’s see if you can make it to your car!

A Few Other Helpful Things To Know.

  • No masks or costumes allowed. Your own terrified face will be enough.
  • No pets of any kind, unless we can feed them to our clown friends.
  • Absolutely no touching the actors or you will immediately be removed from the property.
  • No flash photography, flashlights or laser pens are permitted in the Abandoned Circus. Screaming and sobbing are perfectly fine, though.
  • Avoid line jumping, foul language, inappropriate behavior, and any bloodthirsty creatures headed your way.
  • You must be 21 years of age or older to purchase or consume alcohol. There is a 100% ID check at the park entry gate. This is a fun community event and there is zero tolerance for underage drinking or public intoxication.

Little Known Fact, Clowns Hate To Wait. Get There Early!

  • Traffic can be a regular three ring circus, so go clown style and pack a small car with all your pals.
  • Free self-parking all night; every night. No need to buy an expensive parking pass. We appreciate all human meat donors equally.

Little Ones Are Welcome Too.

  • The first two available trips into the Abandoned Circus for EACH evening are “kid friendly” shows. Kid friendly means no live actors and no animatronics will be used. It also means there will be no abductions, human sacrifices, fire breathing dragons, monsters under the bed or guest appearances by the boogey man. We strive to make our kid friendly experience as least scary as possible, but understand, this is a creepy CarnEVIL themed Halloween attraction. Use your best judgement as the adult.

Rain or shine, the show must go on. All sales are final. Tickets may be transferable to an alternate date between October 13th and November 5th 2017. Purchasers with questions should email director@carnyfest.com for further information.


CarnEvil For A Good Cause

Disaster Preparedness DC. Are You Prepared? CarnEvil at Merriweather Park is a fully immersive entertainment experience, but your dollars go to more than just entertainment. The CarnEVIL production serves to support funding for first responder equipment and training through Disaster Preparedness DC Incorporated, a nonprofit public charity.

CarnEvil Days Are For Giving

girl sits a top a pile of pumpkins Daytime is when Merriweather Park transforms and the real magic begins. CarnEVIL Days supports local school children with physical disabilities by ensuring ALL children get to experience the joy of a field trip to the farm. Yes, CarnEVIL transforms into an authentic, ADA compliant, farm experience complete with pumpkins, games, and even a hay maze. Everyone matters, or no one matters. This motto is the driving motivation behind the forces that have come together to create such a unique experience. Please contact days@carnyfest.com if you would like to help with CarnEVIL Days.








FREE Event Parking!

Merriweather LOT 1

Additional parking is available at the MedStar Parking Garage off Broken Land Parkway

Handicapped parking is located at the Box Office lot