Every year, the ghosts and ghouls come out to play for Halloween.

This year, due to the COVID-19 pandemic, we have to re-adjust to keep up at least some of our traditions – and maybe form new ones. And just because we can’t celebrate this eerie season the way we normally do, that’s no reason to let the spirit of Halloween die…ooooh, hauntings! Get in a spooktacular mood by trying an item or two on this list of ways to get your spook on this October!

LondonFuse Halloween Trivia – October 29

Of course, we’re going to start off suggesting our trivia night! Join us for 10 rounds of Halloween trivia with categories like The History of Halloween, CANDY, Name that Monster, Scary Movies and Songs and Books… oh my!

To play, make a donation to LondonFuse via PayPal or EMT to admin@londonfuse.ca to play. Minimum suggested donation $5. All proceeds go to ensuring that LondonFuse can continue to spotlight culture in the community.

Image of a Ouija board with the words Halloween trivia on it
Join us online on October 29 for fun Halloween Trivia and the chance to win some great prizes!

Sign up once you have made your contribution, and you’ll be emailed all the information on how to access the event in Zoom as well as Google form answer sheets to submit!

Halloween Night for the Kiddos

Trick or treating may be a bit tricky this year.  Some provinces are banning it altogether, and so far, Ontario is just suggesting to keep your social distance. You could launch candy off your porch or layout a bowl for the kids, granted If anyone even comes by.  

If you have your own little ones and aren’t up for risking the adventures of going door-to-door, you might want to set up a haunted search.  Think of preparing for the Easter bunny but instead, they need to seek out their candy in Halloween costumes and make their own decorations and games.

And if you’re still looking for a Halloween costume idea, get inspired by Fuser Sammy Roach’s Last Minute London-Inspired Halloween Costumes list from 2017.

Scary Craft Activities

There are lots of opportunities to find some indoor crafts.  Check out local artist Jesse Robertson and her business, Keep It Colourful. Jesse has been hosting free virtual paint nights off her Facebook.  Personally, I’m looking forward to the sugar skulls on Halloween!  You can also pay to own the videos so you can recreate on your own time (and help out a local business).

A quick Google search will lead you to other crafts you can do with the family or on your own. Check out this site for some really fun ideas!

Spooky Reads

Delve into some local authors and read about some of the histories of London. The Forest City Killer by Vanessa Brown explores some of the murders that took place here over 50 years ago.

Vanessa Brown holds her book “Forest City Killer: A Serial Murderer, a Cold-Case Sleuth, and a Search for Justice.” Photo by Bob Klanac.

Or check out Murder City by Michael Arntfield which focuses on how London was the serial killer capital at one time. Or learn more about the ghost that haunts the Grand Theatre, former owner Ambrose Smalls, in Hogtown Empire: The Disappearance of Ambrose Small by Geordie Telfer.

Haunted London(Fuse)

Some more spooky treats for this Halloween, courtesy of LondonFuse! As part of the “Histories of London, ON A Mini-Documentary Series,” Jason Plant and Emily Stewart examine the haunted side of London with some eerie, historical stories from Woodland Cemetery and Eldon House. You can also read about the ghosts of Eldon House or the Grand Theatre, courtesy of LondonFuse contributors.

Or if haunted houses are your thing, enjoy watching some Fusers get spooked in Atlohsa Haunted Basement in 2016!

Frightening Flicks

These days, we’re all becoming very acquainted with the streaming services of Prime, Disney+, Netflix, Crave, Shudder, Apple+, and more. As a lover of all things horror, I can make a few suggestions for some spooky selections.

  • Family Fun: Hocus Pocus (Disney+), Monster Squad (Prime)
  • Fun & LIght: Extra Ordinary (Crave), John Dies at the End (Netflix)
  • Scary Stuff: You’re Next (Prime), Hereditary (Netflix)
  • TV: Buffy the Vampire Slayer (Prime), The Haunting of Hill House/Bly Manor (Netflix), Treehouse of Horrors on The Simpsons (Disney+)

Crave, Prime, and Netflix will give you a 30-day trial. Disney + and Shudder only do one week.

Or if you want to see something on the big screen, Hyland Cinema‘s drive-in will show Halloween movies for the next two weekends, including Halloween, The Thing, Ghostbusters, Casper, and The Shining.

Halloween Markets & Haunts

It’s a little more difficult to get out like we usually do. But there are still some fun things you can do around town, such as

  • Fanshawe Pioneer Village’s The Abandoned Village: October 21- 31
  • London & St. Thomas Halloween Display Contest: now until October 31 
  • Pick a pumpkin: There are a few different pumpkin patches near London where you can pick your own to carve later and some family fun activities like those at Apple Land Station.  
  • Halloween Online Market: Shop from the safety of your home for some horror-themed collectibles and gifts! Running now until Halloween.
Pumpkins sit ready to go home next to the Apple Land Station store. Photo by Laura Thorne.
Pumpkins sit ready to go home next to the Apple Land Station store. Photo by Laura Thorne.

You can find more local activities on Tourism London’s website.

Haunted Road Trips & Hikes

Have some time to kill (eep!) or gas to burn? Take a road trip to some of the haunted places in Ontario.  Of course, with the right sweater, boots, apple cider and dreary weather… any location can be haunted.   

Be sure to take in some of the gorgeous fall colours while they last! Take a walk around any of London’s amazing parks and forest areas — make sure you wear the proper footwear as Autumn leads to slippery leaves and a bit more mud.  

Braving the Bars

Bars are technically still open with last call at 11 pm. Check out your favourite haunts (ha!) to see if they have any special activities. Poacher’s Arms is offering up some Halloween Trivia on Tuesday, October 27th! And Olive R. Twists offers a Ha-Ha Halloween comedy night on October 31. 

Rock n’ Roll bingo will take place online and at Winks on Tuesday, October 27 with a $10 donation to ARF London. And for your dance party needs, Raygun Retro runs online on Sunday nights. DJ Melting Man will project a spooky movie during the event that will run on Twitch.

Finally, you can take in musical performances from talented artists like Jim Cuddy for the Sunshine Foundation Halloween at Home Fundraiser. Or more locally, Butch Haller and the Chesterfield Ramblers.

Whatever you get up to this Halloween season, just make sure you’re practicing social distancing and wearing your mask in public!

The scariest thing of all is watching the numbers of COVID-19 cases rise in our area.

Feature photo by Jason Plant.

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