Events & Activities

The Salem Museum’s Speaker Series is moving from the third Monday of the month to the second Thursday. For the foreseeable future, speakers and other programs will be on Zoom, Facebook Live, or YouTube.

Speaker Series—Tales and Trails
Thursday, October 8 at 7 pm on Zoom

Author Joe Tennis combines two favorite October activities—hiking and haunting—into an engaging online presentation for the Salem Museum. On Thursday, October 8 at 7 pm, Tennis will tell stories from two of his most popular books, Virginia Rail Trails and Haunts of Virginia’s Blue Ridge Highlands. His talk, Tales and Trails, will be presented on Zoom. His talk will be presented on Zoom–click here for the Zoom link. The waiting room will open at 6:45.

Tennis has also become well known for his popular ghost books, including Haunts of Virginia’s Blue Ridge Highlands. The wispy woman of Roanoke College. A Confederate soldier forever lost at Cumberland Gap. The spectral horse that runs the streets of Abingdon. These are just a few of the restless spirits of southwestern Virginia whose stories Joe Tennis has recorded. His books are popular with adults and children alike, spanning both sides of the Blue Ridge to explore the ghostly tales of Appalachia and the Crooked Road, the New Castle Murder Hole, the mysteries of Mountain Lake, and the lost graves of Wise County.

Joe Tennis grew up in Virginia Beach, Virginia, where he began writing while in elementary school—first a book on Elvis Presley, then a comical satire of his fellow fifth grade students. He has since written thousands of articles for newspapers and magazines about places from California to Florida, but he has become best known as an expert on the history and folklore of Virginia, Tennessee and North Carolina. Tennis is a Radford University graduate and the author of nearly a dozen books.


The Ghosts will walk at the amphitheater at Sherwood Memorial Park on October 17 at 4 pm, with lots of room to socially distance.

The Salem Museum’s 22nd Annual Ghost Walk set for Saturday, October 17 at the Sherwood Memorial Park Amphitheater

Some of Salem’s most popular ghosts are putting on a party for Brigadier General Andrew Lewis’ 300th birthday! Click here for tickets!

Visit one of Salem’s most “populated” graveyards to meet characters from Salem’s past and learn about our region’s history. On October 17 at 4 pm, Salem’s “ghosts” will tell their stories in Sherwood Memorial Park’s outdoor amphitheater.

The Salem Museum has a special celebration planned for Ghost Walk 2020: it’s the 300th birthday of Salem’s Revolutionary War hero, Brigadier General Andrew Lewis! Attendees will learn more about his life, and enjoy the stories and gifts the other ghosts bring him for his birthday.

While Ghost Walk 2020 will not include the traditional cemetery walking tour, ghosts will instead be walking across an old, historic stage set deep in the Sherwood burial grounds. Their performance in this special setting will be family-friendly, fun and informative. The Museum’s assistant director, Alex Burke, will emcee the event.

Guests are required to wear masks at all times, over both mouth and nose, and maintain a distance at least six feet from others while seated and while entering and exiting.

Tickets are $10 adults; $5 students; 3 and under free. Tickets are available at the Salem Museum or online here. Proceeds benefit the Salem Museum & Historical Society. Tickets are not refundable. Rain date is Sunday, October 18 at 4 pm. Check the Museum’s website or Facebook page if rain is in the forecast.

Sherwood Memorial Park is located at 1250 E. Main Street in Salem. The Sherwood Amphitheater has concrete risers. Attendees are invited to bring folding chairs, cushions, and/or blankets. General parking is in the cemetery. There is limited handicapped parking at the Amphitheater with an area for wheelchairs in about the midsection of the audience. This year marks the Ghost Walk’s 22nd year.

Ghost Walk 2020 is made possible by the generous sponsorship of Sherwood Memorial Park and the William & Margaret Robertson Endowment Fund. Ghost Walk 2020 is dedicated to the memory of Willie Robertson, one of the Museum’s “ghosts” for many years.

It’s the Bee’s Knees! Salem in the Roaring Twenties
Main Gallery Exhibit:  Ongoing

The Salem Museum takes a look back at life in our hometown a century ago with a new main gallery feature exhibit. The exhibit includes personal stories, artifacts, and photographs that explore everyday life—and the nightlife—of the Roaring Twenties. Icons of the decade are also included: a still that produced a lot of moonshine in the ‘20s and several flamboyant flapper dresses from the Museum’s collection. Read more…