Around Town

Haunted landmarks, facial hair competition to benefit 350th

WESTFIELD-From haunted landmarks to beards and mustaches of all shapes and sizes, two fundraisers in October promise to enlighten and entertain attendees as well as raise funds to support the Westfield 350th celebration.

Joyce Peregrin and Vanessa Diana are coordinating logistics for two fundraisers next month – “Haunted Westfield” and “Beards & Brews” – that are supporting the Westfield 350th celebration.

“The reason that people should support and enjoy these events is to raise funds for the actual 350th celebration weekend in May 2019,” said Joyce Peregrin, one of the organizers working on logistics for the fundraisers. “This is also an opportunity as a community to learn more about the city and to move forward as a community that is involved in the future of Westfield.”

A spooky fundraiser titled “Haunted Westfield” is slated Oct. 13 at the Westfield Woman’s Club on Court Street. The highlight of the affair is a program led by Rob Goff Sr., founder and director of Agawam Paranormal.

“We plan a public reveal of four Westfield landmarks,” said Goff, adding that his team will share thermal activity, audio clips and video with a night vision camera that will provide “potential evidence” of paranormal activity.

“The landmarks are being kept a secret until the big reveal,” added Goff, noting that the discussion of each building will include its historical significance as well as historical individuals associated with each site. “The potential evidence we share is the wow factor we look for.”

“Haunted Westfield” offers patrons three ways to participate – attending a matinee program at 1 p.m. by Goff and his team at a cost of $10 per person; attending a community harvest dinner at 6 p.m. followed by the program at 8 at $35 per person, or attending the evening program only at 8 p.m. at $10 per person.

The home-cooked dinner will feature roast pork, chicken, root vegetables, dessert, coffee and tea. A cash bar will also be available, and raffle baskets – many fall themed – will round out the evening affair.

Tickets for “Haunted Westfield” are available by visiting Tickets will also be available during the Westfield Historic Cemetery Tours at The Old Burying Ground on Mechanic Street on Sept. 28 and 29. Tour hours are at 6, 6:30, 7, 7:30, 8 and 8:30 p.m., all hosted by the Westfield Historical Commission. Also, tickets for “Haunted Westfield” can be purchased during Westfield PumpkinFest on Oct. 13.

Another fundraiser to benefit the Westfield 350th efforts is “Beards & Brews,” planned Oct. 23 from 5 to 9 p.m. at the Tin Bridge Brewing Co. at 487 East Main St. Special guest Steve Nagle from Rock 102 will provide the entertainment for the evening.

“The contest is actually historical in nature since there have been beard and mustache contests in Westfield in 1869, 1919, and 1969,” said Peregrin.

Vanessa Diana, who has also been working closely with Peregrin on fundraising logistics, added that the winners of the beard and mustache contests will be welcome to march in the 350th parade. The winners will also have their photographs taken so they can be showcased on the Westfield 350 website and Facebook page.

“All of our events are about the community, as well as getting people involved,” said Diana.

Individuals interested in the facial hair competition will be judged in categories including originality, style, creativity, attention to detail and uniqueness. The judging will take place from 7 to 8 p.m., followed by the awards and prize ceremony from 8 to 8:30 p.m.

“The local judges will determine which contestant’s facial hair best enhances his overall appearance, style and personality, and in the freestyle categories, the judges will consider originality and creativity,” said Peregrin.

Contestants can showcase their mustache, partial beard, full beard/full beard natural, or choose “free style” which can include intriguing shapes, colors and decorations.

There is no charge to be a contestant, however, persons must purchase a ticket to the Beards & Brews event to compete. For an entry form, visit

Tickets for “Beards & Brews” are $20 each and includes one brew. While there are typically 12 beers on tap at the Tin Bridge Brewing Co., three will be highlighted during the event – Octoberfest, a traditional German-style Marzen, Galaxy IPA, a hazy and tropical New England-style IPA, and Peanut Butter Porter, a light bodied porter with natural peanut butter flavors. Beers also expected to be available include Saison, American Red IPA, Operation Citra IPA, Mosaic Maximus IPA and Session IPA. A cash bar will also be observed.

Peppermill Catering of Westfield will also have a food truck at the event offering a variety of tasty treats including grilled Mac and Cheese with pulled pork, grilled Reuben, garlic parmesan bone-in wings, Peppermill store made potato chips, French fries and sweet potato fries.

Rounding out the evening will be “tons of raffle prizes,” noted Peregrin.

Raffle prizes at press time that have been donated include board games, two Adirondack chairs, a grill with charcoal, a men’s gift basket, golf bag, and a variety of gift cards from local businesses.

“Tickets are limited to this event so we encourage area residents to purchase their tickets online as soon as possible,” said Diana.

For more information, visit











To Top