Sarah's HalloWeekend List, October 28-30

Witches, pumpkins, ghouls - oh my! Halloween gets a little brighter at Illumi in Laval. PHOTO: Dominick Gravel | Illumi
Sarah Deshaies produces the Andrew Carter Morning Show. Every Friday at 8:20am, she tells you about the big, quirky and off-the-beaten-path events happening in Montreal. Here is this week's list, with links for more information so you can get out and enjoy the city! Submit your event to

Happy Halloweekend! A sunny, cool weekend awaits for spooky fun! 

Ivan Dow hosts his annual Haunted House and maze fundraiser. The 15-minute maze walkthrough includes spiders, a Batmobile, bubble machines and more. Donations will go to West Island Citizen Advocacy and Sun Youth. At 580 Pine Beach North, Dorval, Sunday and Monday, 5 to 9pm. 

The Montreal chapter of Royal Astronomical Society of Canada hosts a Spooky and Starry Haunted Evening for kids and families. Learn about night constellations, create a moon lander and your very own planet! Treats and a bake sale on hand. At the John Abbott College Agora, Casgrain Building. Friday, 6 to 8:30pm. 

Cavalia’s Illumi sound and light show has returned to Laval, with all its Halloweens denizens coming out to play, from witches to pumpkins to monsters galore. New additions include planes, balloons and a pond teeming with life. Opt for the 3-kilometre walking path, or the driveable route. Until November 13. 

MAPP Montreal puts on a ‘monumental light fresco’ at the Laurier Park Chalet in the Plateau, projecting three individual projects onto the building, bringing an eerie, magical feeling to this gorgeous park after sundown. Until Monday, 6 to 11pm. 

Final weekend to check out the Halloween programming at Les Jardins botaniques for kiddos, from pumpkin lectures, a ‘potions’ workshop, the magic steps walking circuit, to the Sorcerer at the main greenhouse. 2021’s Ode to the Moon is back, with the interactive wolf call. Don’t forget, the tickets are now timed - but you also get daytime access to the gardens the day-of! Until October 31. (Though it does appear the final weekend for the Jardins de lumière lanterns has sold out.)

Sometimes, riding a roller coaster is better in the cold dark. Fright Fest is back at La Ronde, with ‘scare zones’, roaming ghouls and vamps and several haunted houses to put you in spooky season mood. For those who prefer to not get chased by chainsaw-wielding randos, there is family-friendly programming. Saturday and Sunday, 1pm to 10pm. 

SOS Labyrinth in the Old Port unveils its Halloween spirit, with seasonal decorations to spice up the 2-kilometre maze. Save 15 per cent off your ticket when you come in costume! Saturday and Sunday, 11am to 5:30pm.

North Star Pinball bar hosts a spooky Saturday evening, with killer tunes and a costumer contest, Saturday at 10pm. 

Exporail, the Canadian train museum in St Constant, is dressing up for Halloween! Wander through the museum’s extensive collection of antique trains. 

Broadway’s Gordon Greenberg directs his recent comedy Dracula: A Comedy of Terrors, a fresh spin on Bram Stoker’s tale of a sexy bloodsucker seeking new love, and life. Five cast members take on numerous roles in this speedy, funny outing with word play, puppets, and Brooks-esque physical gags. At the Segal Centre, until November 13. 

A down-on-his-luck photographer is commissioned for an unusual job that plays extremely well in noir thriller Bloodshot. Harry Standjofski brings Derek to life as he trails and photographs a mysterious woman - until things go very, very wrong. The one-man show continues its North American debut at Hudson Village Theatre until November 6. 

For the kids: Geordie Theatre and Kidoons’ Frankenstein: A Comic Book Story, an adaptation of Mary Shelley’s horror story that is designed to look just like a comic strip come to life!  Mary is a young book artist who finds the journals of one Doctor Frankenstein - and she is ‘drawn’ right into his world! Rick Miller, Craig Francis and Paul Van Dyck’s adaptation tackles fear, climate change and technology in a dazzling, kid-friendly format. At the Segal Studio until October 31. 

Happy Diwali! The Hindu Festival of Light started Monday, and the Mauritian community in Montreal will host live music and dancing at the Diwali Party, at the Virgin Mary Antiochian Orthodox Church, 10841 Grande Allée. Saturday at 6:30pm

Bowser & Blue will front The Rotary Club of Westmount’s food basket fundraiser for families in Verdun and LaSalle. Westmount High, Saturday, 8pm. 

Montreal Improv in St-Henri hosts a sunny spin on a scary genre with Slash Improvised Horror, 8pm Friday. Followed by Improv Against Humanity, which will channel the risqué energy of the famous card game, 10:45pm. 

Meet a sports hero and get their autograph at L'Anti-Expo 15th Edition Collectors Trade Show. Kim St-Pierre, Joshua Roy, Delino Deshields are just some of the many athletes making an appearance. Souvenirs, sports cards and action figures will be on display, Saturday (10am-5pm) and Sunday (10am-3pm) at Sport Xpo (2890 Dagenais in Laval).

Musical choices: Metal rapper Backxwash launches her new album, His Happiness shall come first even though we are suffering, at Le Monastère, Friday 8:30pm, and American rapper Flo Milli supports her debut album, at Le Studio TD, 8pm. On Saturday, “Undrunk” singer Fletcher hits up MTelus at 8pm. Salsa stars Rey Ruiz and José Alberte El Canario bring their orchestras to Rialto, 10pm. On Sunday, Dutch composer and pianist Joep Beving is at Corona, 8pm, while indie singer-songwriter Madi Diaz performs at Petit Campus, 8pm. 

Comedy superstar Gad Elmaleh at Bell Centre, Sunday at 6pm.

DJ Demers (Tonight Show, Conan, America’s Got Talent) headlines The Comedy Nest. Friday and Saturday, 8:30 and 10pm. With support from Heidi Foss and Oren Shbiro. 

Family, friends and colleagues will say ‘adieu’ to former Gazette cartoonist Pascal Élie, who passed away last week. Pascal’s droll, final cartoon (for Le Devoir, October 15) targeted climate activists targeting artwork with cans of soup. Terry Mosher, who wrote a tribute to Pascal, and fellow cartoonists Sege Chapleau, Boris and Garrotte will also be in attendance. The public is invited to the McCord Museum, Sunday 2-5pm. 

“Trick Or Tease” this weekend at Montreal burlesque HQ The Wiggle Room. On the lineup: Butterscotch Blondie, Madrose, Joy Rider, Lolita Blanca and Enshantay. Shows Friday and Saturday, 8:30pm. 


Two languages, three venues, very Montreal: brave, new play Cyclorama explores the concept of ‘the two solitudes’ in regards to the city’s arts scene. Playwright Laurence Dauphinais is a former child star who went on to study at the National Theatre School, in the French stream; she later found work in both languages. Her new documentary piece is supported by two venues: The Centre du Théâtre d’aujourd’hui and The Centaur. The first part begins at the latter in Old Montreal, then you hop on a city bus (where you hear part two) then conclude with part three at the Centre on St-Denis. 7 to 10pm, until November 5. 

The Montreal Museum of Fine Arts’ new show is Seeing Loud: Basquiat and Music , the first major exploration of the electric artist’s work to land in Montreal. The MMFA teamed up with the Musée de la musique - Philharmonie de Paris to examine the role of music in his work, from Beethoven to Charlie Parker to Maria Callas to New York’s underground scene. It opens Saturday. And speaking of the New York connection, a selection of photographs taken by Diane Arbus in and around the Big Apple between 1956-71 is also now. 

The Insectarium has reopened post-renovation with a fresh look at all the creepy, crawly, pretty creatures. The team redesigned the space to give visitors an intimate look at what it is to be an insect: in the Alcoves, vibrating floors and ultraviolet projections allow you to imagine how insects feel and see the world. Visitors get to move like an insect, too, slipping through cracks or trodding on rods hanging from the ceiling. Then you get to observe bugs up close, followed by a trip through the Dome, and finally, a greenhouse-like space, the Great Vivarium, where roaming butterflies are the special attraction. 

At the Montreal Science Centre, explore evolution in Human or explore the process of invention in Fabrik - Creativity Factory. Plus, the movie theatre is open, so you can sit back and learn about Sea Lions and the Great Bear Rainforest - in IMAX 3D!