Oct 01-31, 2014

Salem Haunted Happenings

Wicked goes “Witch City” for Salem’s annual Halloween celebration. The town notorious for the Salem Witch Trials is now actually a hotbed for contemporary practitioners. Not to mention that it boasts hundreds of theme attractions and tours, like Salem Witch Museum, Count Orlok’s Nightmare Gallery and the Witch Dungeon Museum. Art fairs, costume parties, parades, and more take over downtown. Oct. 1-31. Complete schedule of events at www.hauntedhappenings.org. Salem, Mass.

Oct 15-19, 2014

Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey

Flying quadruple somersaults, human cubes, dancing elephants and roaring tigers—performing arts goes haywire as the American circus troupe and “Greatest Show on Earth” celebrates the theme “Built to Amaze!” Show times: W-F 7 pm, Sa 11 am, 3 pm and 7 pm, Su noon and 4 pm. Tickets: $25-140. TD Garden, 100 Legends Way, 800.745.3000

Oct 23-25, 2014

Boston Book Festival

The city that launched a thousand pens (Hawthorne, Longfellow, Wharton—you get the idea) is a fitting place for this three-day literary event that features readings, panel discussions, and participatory sessions with more than 150 well-known writers, including Herbie Hancock, Susan Minot, Rick Riordan, Norman Foster and Doris Kearns Goodwin. There are a few ticketed events, but most events are free. Full schedule and exact Copley Square locations is  online. Copley Square, Boston, www.bostonbookfestival.org

Oct 17 - Nov 16, 2014

Ether Dome

Boston University’s professional Huntington Theater Company produces both classic and new works, and consistently attracts internationally renowned actors and directors under the tutelage of artistic director Peter DuBois. This month, Michael Wilson directs Elizabeth Egloff's medical thriller "Ether Dome," which is particularly relevant in Boston because it is based on the true story of the 1846 discovery of ether as an anesthetic here at Massachusetts General Hospital. Oct. 17-Nov. 16.

Oct 16-26, 2014

In the Summer House

Performing arts is the primary focus of Fort Point Theater Channel, which features elements of music, dance, visual arts and theater. Twelve core artists offer unique major productions, new play festivals, intimate salons and the Exclamation Point! reading series. This month: "In the Summer House," a play by Jane Bowles about powerful mother-daughter relationships. Show times: Th and Su 7:30 pm, F-Sa 8 pm. Tickets: free, but reservations required as seating is limited. Waterfront Square, 290 Congress St., Boston, 800.838.3006

Sep 18-21, 2014

Sweet Salvage

This free-admission sale of shabby-chic and upcycled industrial odds ’n’ ends happens once a month, and although the address remains consistent, it’s never quite the same place twice.

Sep 06, 2014

Brazil, Italy or India

Three unrelated celebrations of other countries’ cultures are scheduled simultaneously: the Brazilian Day indoor/outdoor festival at Scottsdale Center for the Performing Arts; Experience Italy themed activities included with admission at Musical Instrument Museum (www.mim.org); and a ticketed evening concert by Legends of India at Mesa Arts Center.

Sep 18-27, 2014

Ballet Under the Stars

SEPT. 18-20, 25-27. The state’s official leotard league, Ballet Arizona, bestows free shows upon casual crowds at six parks throughout the Phoenix area this month. Arrive before sundown to stake a grassy spot to squat. The sampler-style program starts at 7 pm, and it’s cool if your kids can’t stay still—twirling in time to the music is accepted as high praise.

Sep 28, 2014

Phillip Phillips

8 pm. Mahalia Jackson Theater, 801 N. Rampart St., 800.745.3000, mahaliajacksontheater.com

Oct 09, 2014

Joe Perry at Brookline Booksmith Writers & Readers Series

This local bookstore offers a fantastic lineup of national and local writers on tour and this month is no exception as Joe Perry, guitarist for legendary rock band Aerosmith, discuss the five decades that are the focus of his new memoir, "Rocks: My Life In and Out of Aerosmith."  Tickets: $35, includes a copy of the book. Reading at 6 pm, signing at 7 pm. Coolidge Corner Theater, 290 Harvard St., Brookline, www.brooklinebooksmith.com