The Real Sleepy Hollow: Home to the Legend of the Headless Horseman


Is There A Real Sleepy Hollow?

Many know the story of Sleepy Hollow… Or should I say “The Legend of Sleepy Hollow” which is the name of the short story written by Washington Irving about a headless horseman.

The town of Sleepy Hollow does in fact exist, and it exists almost exactly as described by Irving, except for one little detail… It wasn’t named Sleepy Hollow until 1996. Sleepy Hollow was originally named North Tarrytown but the residents voted to change the name in 1996 to both reflect and honor Irving’s story, and for the more practical purpose of distinguishing it from the neighboring community of Tarrytown. Both towns are within Westchester County and share an area code.

Is There A Headless Horseman in Sleepy Hollow?

A picture from Tim Burton’s film “Sleepy Hollow”

Well, yes, and no. It’s unlikely that you’ll run into a real dude riding around with his head missing… But the Town of Sleepy Hollow has taken it upon itself to bring the legend to life as much as possible – especially around Halloween! Visitors can choose to wind their way down a dangerous path, where ghouls and ghosts lurk around every corner, and if they survive they’ll end up at a party that is thrown each year for the Headless Horseman.

Pretty awesome. And probably a little terrifying.

Visitors can also enjoy live performances of The Legend of Sleepy Hollow -

  • Including the classic characters of Ichabod Crane, Katrina Van Tassel, and of course, the Headless Horseman.
  • The town also puts on a Halloween Masquerade Ball, a Haunted Hay Ride, Oktoberfest, and Cemetery Tours.

Even though the time around Halloween is peak for Sleepy Hollow and all its haunted, headless fun, the town boasts many different festivals and events throughout the year.

For more info on the town of Sleepy Hollow check out these resources:

http://www.visitsleepyhollow.com

Rivertownsguide.com

http://www.sleepyhollowny.gov

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