Whether or not you believe in vampires and witches, the city of New Orleans is filled with them.

I know because I spent my pre-Halloween weekend surrounded by both. On Friday night I attended the Anne Rice New Orleans Vampire Ball, a decadent and dimly-lit festival of enthusiasts dressed either as fanged bloodsuckers or buxom gothic maidens on the verge of death.  Then, on Saturday night, I was privileged to be a guest at the first ever New Orleans Witches’ Ball, held in a beautiful and spooky mansion on St. Charles Avenue.

New Orleans’ vampire culture derives largely from the massive popularity of the supernatural fiction of author Anne Rice, who addressed the ball via pre-recorded video message. “New Orleans is the most divinely haunted city in the world,” she announced, provoking huge applause from the audience.

Attending two serious Halloween parties back to back was both exhilarating and thought-provoking. They were also totally different from one another. The vampires enjoy telling jokes and gawking at dark burlesque. They also have great taste in music. Meanwhile, the witches serve much better food and dress to the nines.

Never in my life have I seen people take Halloween so seriously, but then again, this is a religious holiday for many of them.

As one good witch counseled me, “Samhain night is when the dead and living are the closest. It is a time to reach out to your friends, past and present, and find resolutions for your problems.”

Comments

  1. Vampires & Witches - iNewsView
    October 31, 2011, 2:18 pm

    [...] Whether or not you believe in vampires and witches, the city of New Orleans is filled with them. I know because I spent my pre-Halloween weekend surrounded by both. On Friday night I attended the Anne Rice New Orleans Vampire Ball, a decadent and dimly-lit festival of enthusiasts dressed either as f… http://digitalnomad.nationalgeographic.com/… [...]

  2. AM Burns
    Colorado
    November 1, 2011, 11:02 pm

    Thanks for the great article. Just an FYI witches all over the country serve great food. Pagan pot lucks are the best any time of the year.
    AM Burns

  3. Father JP Vanir
    Ohio
    November 1, 2011, 11:40 pm

    Actually The Anne Rice Vampires Ball is mostly fans of the fictional Anne Rice Vampire Chronicles. As for Real Vampyres not all of us are Pagan and there are even Christian Vampyres.

  4. Soulshroude
    New Orleans
    November 2, 2011, 3:25 am

    That’s mah girl!! The Haunted History Tour always kicks off at 8:30 pm in front of the St. Louis Cathedral on Jackson Square. Mayhaps you could catch her and walk with her on one of her tours… only time will tell! Be there by 8 to purchase a ticket. Visit HauntedHistoryTours.com for information.

  5. Jennifer J Menard
    Louisiana
    November 2, 2011, 6:54 pm

    Fangtastic article and I’m honored to be pictured in it. I am the one with a white lace bonnet crowning my copper ringlets. This year’s ball was like being transformed into a world that only Anne Rice could inspire. Claudia du Lac made her appearance and her thirst for a grand experience was quenched. I plan to attend again next year in character and look forward to visiting all the passionate witches and vampyres, genuine or fictional, that welcomed me with grace and charm. Claudia du Lac and I had a bloody good time. ^,*,^

  6. Michael Morbius
    North Carolina
    November 2, 2011, 11:52 pm

    Awesome! Didn’t realize you were doing an article. I’d love to see your other pics from that night. Great talking with you.

  7. D, ,
    port hueneme
    November 4, 2011, 3:48 am

    Im going to agree with Jp, the anne rice thing is just one event, and there are more non vampires than vampires that attend that one. if you want the vampire party, its the endless night festival, i can say i know several vamps that went to the last one. check there.
    D, ,

  8. [...] Nomad, Andrew Evans who was in New Orleans for Halloween. Check out more photos of the spooky costumes and cemeteries Andrew encountered in Louisiana, and for more New Orleans dispatches from the field, [...]

  9. [...] Nomad, Andrew Evans who was in New Orleans for Halloween. Check out more photos of the spooky costumes and cemeteries Andrew encountered in Louisiana, and for more New Orleans dispatches from the field, [...]

  10. [...] Nomad, Andrew Evans who was in New Orleans for Halloween. Check out more photos of the spooky costumes and cemeteries Andrew encountered in Louisiana, and for more New Orleans dispatches from the field, [...]

  11. [...] out with vampires, witch doctors, hottentots and graffiti [...]

  12. shivanshu yadav
    India
    November 5, 2012, 2:42 am

    are they exists in real or all this is the mith…
    please let me know. i want to study on them.