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Halloween for Kids in Downtown Vancouver

Halloween: happy kids in spooky costumes walking from house to house. Doorbells ringing, choruses of “trick or treat!” and pillowcases overflowing with candy clenched tightly in little fingers.

It’s a pretty picture, but not one that really exists where I live in downtown Vancouver. Instead of houses, there are highrises, instead of doorbells, buzzers and enterphones. How do you celebrate Halloween with a kid when there’s nowhere to trick or treat?

Oh, but there is! There’s no shortage of places to get your Halloween on. Here’s what’s happening for you and your kids in downtown Vancouver this October:

The Roundhouse

Pumpkin Carving

Date: Saturday, October 22nd

Time: 12:00 pm – 3:00 pm

All the materials and tools you need to unleash your inner ghoul.

Cost: $3 per pumpkin. Pre-registration and adult supervision is required.

Halloween Carnival

Date: Monday, October 31st

Time: 4:30 pm – 7:30 pm

Bring your little ghouls, goblins, pirates and princesses to celebrate Halloween with games, crafts, and a “Creepy Hollow” forest to explore.

Cost: $6 per child. Pre-registration is recommended as spots fill up quickly, and adult supervision is required. | 604-713-1800 | 181 Roundhouse Mews (Davie and Pacific)

West End Community Centre

Halloween Howl

Date: Saturday, October 29th

Time: 10:00 am – 12:00 pm

Bring your two to six year olds in their creepiest costumes for crafts, games, a mini-haunted house and a bouncy castle. From 11:45 – 1:00, you can even ice skate with the Pumpkin!

Cost: $5 advance/$6 day of, per child. Skating is free for registered children, $2 per adult (not including skate rental). Pre-registration is recommended as space is limited. | 604-257-8333 | 870 Denman Street

Barclay Manor

Haunted House

Date: Friday, October 28th and Saturday, October 29th

Time: 7:00 pm – 9:00 pm

Ideal for six year olds and up, take a five minute tour through this heritage house made spooky for the occasion.

Cost: $3 per person. Buy tickets in advance or get them at the door. | 604-257-8333 | 1447 Barclay Street

Vancouver Public Library, Central Branch

Hallowe’en Howl

Date: Saturday, October 29th

Time: 3:00 pm – 3:45 pm

Bring your five to eight year old witches and superheroes for stories, puppets, and crafts.

Spooky Fun

Date: Saturday, October 29th

Time: 4:00 pm – 4:30 pm

Stories, puppets, and crafts tailored for the preschool set.

Cost for both events: Free. Held in the Harvey Southam Room of the Children’s Library at the VPL Central Branch. | 604-331-3603 | 350 W. Georgia St

The Stanley Park Hallowe’en Ghost Train

Dates: October 7th – 31st

Times: 6:00 pm – 10:00 pm Sundays – Thursdays. 6:00 pm – 11:oo pm Fridays and Saturdays

Get everything in one place! Your ticket includes the train ride (with a mix of fear and fun provided by the Circus of Disaster), face painting, crafts, and a haunted maze. October 25th is Costume Contest Night, with prizes awarded in four different age categories.

Cost: Children/Seniors $6.25, Adults $9.82, plus tax. Get tickets in advance through or for same-day tickets, the booth on site opens at 3:00 pm. | 604-257-8531 | Pipeline Road, Stanley Park

Trick or Treat with Neighbourhood Businesses

Yaletown celebrates ten years of their annual trick or treat route this year. Pick up a map of participating businesses at the Roundhouse on October 31st and head out with the kids 3:30 pm – 5:30 pm. Last year, most of the merchants on Denman Street had treats for costumed munchkins, and Denman Place Mall went all out with spooky decorations and goodies. My little firefighter made out like a bandit!

If you live downtown, what do you plan to do for Halloween this year? Have we missed any family-friendly events? Let us know in the comments!

*Photo credit – D. Sharon Pruitt on Flickr.

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