Each October, Victoria celebrates its reputation as one of Canada’s most haunted cities with lots of creepy capers to fill the calendar.
John Adams’ Ghostly Walks – part of Discover the Past Walking Tours – offers tours year-round to some of Victoria’s most storied locations, but watch for extra tours nightly as Halloween approaches. Visit discoverthepast.com for details.
The annual Zombie Walk invites creatures seeking brains to gather in their best creepy makeup on Oct. 7 between 3 and 5 p.m. The route usually runs between Centennial Square to the Inner Harbour along either Government or Douglas streets, if you’re in the area you’re bound to run into the throng of the undead.
On stage, Theatre Inconnu presents Frankenstein through Oct. 13 at 1923 Fernwood Rd. Fresh from their recent Victoria Fringe success, Ian Case (War Of 1812) directs David Elendune’s adaptation of the Mary Shelley novel, winner of the 2017 Classical Theatre Company’s Playwriting Competition. Staying true to the essence of the original, Elendune explores the humanity of the characters, and how this is tested through the moral dilemmas they face during the course of the action. This tale presents a once “unthinkable” concept that many could argue is becoming less of an “if” than a “when.” As a prelude to the Halloween season Frankenstein delivers! For tickets, visit ticketrocket.co or call 250-590-6291. Learn more at theatreinconnu.com.
For a completely different take on the same classic, Ballet Victoria’s Frankenstein takes to the Royal Theatre stage Oct. 26 to 28. Celebrating the 200th anniversary of Shelley’s original Gothic novel, it’s an alchemy with Coralli and Perrot’s ballet Giselle that only BV’s Paul Destrooper could bring to the stage. Horror, romance and science fiction is galvanized into a new ballet driven by a score boasting Verdi, Shostakovich, Dukas, Catalani and Adam … think Corpse Bride meets Frankenstein. For details, visit balletvictoria.ca. For tickets, see rmts.bc.ca
From stage to screen, Shock Therapy: Short Canadian Horror Films is presented by CineVic Society of Independent Filmmakers at the The Vic Theatre Oct. 13. Designed with one question in mind – what is horror? – each film was selected to challenge the audience’s preconceived views of the genre.
With films from across Canada, included are the vampire comedy Sang Papier (Night Crosser) from Quebec; Wild, a gorgeous short shot in Ontario that takes place in 1937; FWD, a hilarious ‘90s-inspired satire filmed in Vancouver; and the striking short CAW, shot in Victoria with a local cast and crew. View the entire lineup at CineVic.ca. Tickets are available through Eventbrite.
On Oct. 20 or 26, join the Beyond Belief Paranormal Team as they investigate the spooky occurrences staff, volunteers and visitors have experienced at Victoria’s historic Point Ellice House. Reports of activity in and around the 1861 home include full-body apparitions, voices, footsteps and lights turning on by themselves, while some people feel ghostly presences in the rooms. The evening will include séances, vigils, use of some of the team’s ghost hunting equipment and more. Tickets are $60, open to guests 16 and older (those under-18 must attend with an adult), available from pointellicehouse.com/event/paranormal. Join them … if you dare!
It’s Nightshift at the Royal BC Museum Oct. 27, as you venture to the next realm to explore death rituals, make offerings to the spirits and learn about the science behind consciousness. From here to the hereafter … enjoy an evening filled with costumes, live music, presentations and adventures. Get decked out in your eerie finery and summon your friends for a night like no other at Victoria’s most anticipated Halloween party. Tickets are $40; age 19+ only (two pieces of ID required). For details, visit royalbcmuseum.bc.ca
On Sunday, Oct. 29 the family friendly Wicked Victoria takes over Government Street between Humboldt and Yates streets, featuring live entertainment, Wicked Kid’s Zone, a costume parade, pumpkin decorating and more between noon and 5 p.m. Visit gvfs.ca/gvfs_events/4th-annual-wicked-victoria/ for more details.
Head to the Victoria Bug Zoo for Arachnids, Aliens and Oddities, Oh My! This Halloween, the zoo explores how insects and arachnids have influenced media and movies, in addition to the always interesting life cycles of insects and arachnids. Tickets are $15, adults only; book in advance at 250-384-2847 or visit victoriabugzoo.ca for details.
The annual Halloween extravaganza returns to Galey Farms on Blenkinsop Road, with a corn maze, Pumpkinfest, (weekends in October) and nightly Festival of Fear, Oct. 12 and 13, Oct. 18 to 21 and Oct. 25 to 31. Learn more at galeyfarms.net.
And watch for details from Heritage Acres on the Saanich Peninsula for their annual Halloween festivities, which will include rides on the Pumpkin Express, Oct. 19 to 21. Learn more at heritageacresbc.ca.