This year, Halloween takes place on a Saturday and on a full moon—a rare Blue Moon to be exact! Unfortunately, health officials advise against trick-or-treating and large Halloween parties are a big no-no. When news broke out, cries of despair echoed across Toronto, because let’s be real, Halloween is one of our favourite holidays. But alas, there’s still hope for the spooky season. A lot of hope actually, with an influx of safe Halloween-centric events to keep the spirit(s) alive.
Below we’ve rounded up socially-distanced and fun events for all ages so that you can still get your spook on.
Gather close family & friends for a Halloween on wheels.
If you or someone in your social circle has a car, you’re in luck because there are many Halloween-themed drive-through events across Toronto.
Toronto Zoo’s Boo at the Zoo is a drive-through for all ages, with a trajectory that leads through Rouge Park’s forested trails. It’s embellished with creepy décor made even creepier by ghost stories that are broadcasted to your radio.
In the same vein, Halloween Nights of Lights leads cars through 700,000 LED lights synced up to Halloween tunes.
And finally, Toronto Shines’ latest drive-through includes various Halloween-themed areas like a haunted graveyard, pumpkin patch and movie studio. Higher-tier tickets grant access to SuperDogs, a show featuring dogs in costume.
Purchase your tickets for the above events through their respective websites. Or check out other drive-through activities throughout Toronto.
Watch a horror flick somewhere other than your sofa.
From the safety of your car or reserved outdoor seat, plan a Halloween date night underneath the Blue Moon. Enjoy scary features like Army of Darkness and The Descent, or the Tim Burton classic The Nightmare Before Christmas. Hurry and snag your spots before they’re sold out.
Tickets are available online with food sold onsite at the Vista Eatery.
Partake in a digital pumpkin parade.
If you and your crew want to stay in this year, entertain yourselves for an evening (or two) with a digital pumpkin parade.
Every year, Toronto’s public parks host pumpkin parades where participants line up their carved masterpieces for a prize. This year, the annual pumpkin parade takes place online with the City of Toronto encouraging participants to share their creations via #PumpkinParadesTO.
Explore a frightening haunted house, if you dare.
Toronto’s annual haunted house, Horror Hallways, is back with some changes. The pitch-black, indoor maze still induces blood-curdling screams, but with added safety precautions. For one, you’ll be screaming into your mask. At least your terror’s muffled, right? The event also implemented temperature checks upon arrival, extra-sanitized props and contact tracing.
This year’s maze only welcomes six people at a time, within the same social circle, so grab your tickets before they sell out. Since it’s really scary—emphasis on really—this event isn’t recommended for young children.
Sign up for a bubble ghost tour with your social circle.
Are you and the gang still stuck on Halloween plans? Toronto’s Haunted Walk now features ghost tours exclusively for social circles. Explore haunted attractions like The Distillery Historic District, University of Toronto and Black Creek Pioneer Village. The tour covers ghost sightings, takes you through creepy tunnels and relays spooky love stories. Finally, you’ll get all the ghost gossip and intel.
Book your tour online and expect new safety measures like regular cleaning, lots of space between people and adjusted routes. Group capacity is 12 people from a maximum of three households.
Delight in a fabulous Halloween drag show.
On October 30th and 31st, the Fall N’ Leaves TO pop-up is hosting Halloween drag shows on their patio. The outdoor food and wine bar is partially heated and has various fall-themed activities to amplify your spooky weekend. Sign up for pumpkin painting, pumpkin bowling and wine tasting. Enjoy wood fire-cooked eats and fall-themed cocktails. Yum!
General entry is free, but tickets are still required for wine tasting and painting. Fall N’ Leaves does take reservations, which are a must for groups of ten or more. Find the temporary pop-up on the corner of Richmond Street and Bathurst Street, until November 1st.
Watch zombies wrestle on a huge outdoor patio.
Superkick’d Zombie Wrestling is back, except this time it’s outside. Every year, costume-clad wrestlers groan, grunt and limp—just like zombies—and hilariously fight one another. There’s also a Kids Halloween Show on Saturday, October 31st in the afternoon.
This year’s set takes place on Rendezview’s huge patio, with tables placed 8-feet apart. Capped at 4-6 people per table from the same social bubble, one ticket grants entry and drink tokens for an entire table.
Swap trick-or-treating for a live Monster Mash.
Drive-in concerts are all the rage because let’s face it, we’ll take our live music however we can. And the viewing experience is actually surprisingly comfortable from the hood of a car. Plus, you can pack loads of snacks and candy. On that note, Dwayne Gretzky is performing at the CityView Drive-In this Halloween. Toronto’s popular cover band promises Halloween tunes (fingers crossed for The Monster Mash) and costumes. So you and your crew better dress up too!
Purchase your tickets online and children under 12 get in for free. Food is also available onsite.
Wander a castle’s haunted grounds.
Legends of Horror fans, breathe your sighs of relief. Although the event itself is cancelled, Casa Loma is still celebrating Halloween. In a safer way, of course. With its Halloween sets on display, leisurely explore the castle’s decorated lower gardens and tunnels.
The self-guided walking tour is included with your general admission. And unlike Legends of Horror, actors won’t be present to interact with guests. Take a look at Casa Loma’s safety protocols prior to your visit, so you know what to expect.
Entertain the kiddos with spooky science.
The Ontario Science Centre presents Spooky Science Week! For one week leading up to Halloween, take advantage of free online entertainment for the little ones. Kids can partake in Halloween-inspired trivia, Frankenstein-esque experiments and an educational Facebook Live.
Closing off the week on October 31st, The Ontario Science Centre is hosting a live Halloween Virtual Star Party on YouTube. Celebrate the rare full moon and learn about creepy corners of the universe, like Tarantula Nebula.
Opt for a low-key Halloween filled with yummy eats.
Maybe you’re a homebody and don’t feel like going out this year. Or perhaps, like a lot of us, you can’t get enough of seasonal movies and want to hunker down with scary classics. In that case, make it a well-executed binge-fest by donning your comfiest costume (because why not) and ordering your favourite local cuisine. Because delicious food pairs well with Halloween flicks.