The Gleaner

Halloween season is here!

Spooky season is upon us! And amongst the pumpkin patch visits, seasonal baking, and stress of finding the perfect Halloween costume, various haunted houses have been popping up around the Valley to get you in the mood for trick-or-treating this year.

The Livestock Breeders Association (LBA) is back with its haunted house, which opened the weekend of the Fall Festival. However, this year it has been moved from the Industrial Building to the east side of the arena. Susan Morison of the LBA explains that guests will be taken through various rooms with different themes like the deadly doctor, clowns, and a graveyard. She says there is no age limit but invites guests to gauge their ability to handle scares before entering. There is also a door halfway through where people can leave if they feel overwhelmed.

Morison says, “It’s the entirety of what the LBA is about, creating events and family-oriented things. We are very ag-based, and though the Haunted house isn’t ag-based it is still part of the community. It’s all volunteers that put this haunted house together.” The haunted house runs until Halloween weekend.

The LBA also introduced a movie night this year, during which the film Friday the 13th was shown on Friday, the 13th of October. The movie was played both in English and in French.

Spooks for Scouts and Guides

In Hinchinbrooke, Hope Maurice has launched her first haunted house. This has been 17 years in the making for Maurice, and she is thrilled to finally be setting it up. “17 years ago, my mom and I went to a haunted house in Alberta. That day I said, ‘I know my calling, this is what I want in my life.’ My mom passed away four years ago, and I have a photo of us from that night on my fridge for inspiration.” This year, the timing finally felt right.

The haunted house is a fundraiser for both the Girl Guides and the Scouts. Being someone who has lived in the Valley, moved away, and then moved back, Maurice explains that she longed for the kind of community that the Valley provides. She hopes to be able to contribute to community organizations that fuel the values that she missed. Maurice also wants to create spaces where people can gather and have exciting, shared experiences. “Since Grove Hall is not for performers and events anymore, I’m trying to fill what I feel is a hole in our community,” she says.

The haunted house opens on October 20, and it runs on weekends from 5 to 9:30 p.m. Admission is ten dollars, cash only. There will also be an area set up with toys and a changing table for kids to rest and reset. Maurice shouts out her family for being so supportive in the creation of this haunted house. She also recommends making an evening out of the experience and stopping at the Marché de Vieux Bois directly across the street, as a way to further support the community.

Trails and mazes

If haunted houses aren’t really your thing, check out some of the other activities going on this month! Les amis de la réserve nationale de faune du Lac Saint-François will be offering free activities on October 21 and 22. Guests are invited to tour the trail and experience a frightening rally, enjoy hot chocolate and treats, and participate in a photobooth.

If you’re looking for a corn maze to get lost in, a few places around the Valley can provide! Jamieson Maple has a corn maze open on weekends (weather permitting) from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. until October 28. Framboises et Parapluies in Saint Chrysostome opened its maze earlier this fall, and will be open on October 20, 21 and 22 before closing for the winter.

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