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The Vancouver Halloween Parade & Expo is returning to the city next month, with what organizers are calling “astonishing arts and performances.”
Presented by the Vancouver International Halloween Festival Society (VIHFS) the event takes place from October 5 to 7. Billed as a festival of arts, performances, cosplay, comics, anime, films, costumes and makeup, it draws approximately 100,000 spectators annually, along with 1,100 performers.
“We are excited to… create a long weekend fantasy for the general public,” said VIHFS director Raymond He.
During the Expo, artists will turn Vancouver city centre into “a 2.5-dimensional wonderland,” with outdoor performances on Vancouver Art Gallery North Plaza and Indoor Exhibition at UBC Robson Square.
Artisans who have handcrafted their costumes may apply for grants from the festival by participating in the cosplay exhibition and the parade. As the event is being billed as family-friendly, no blood and gore costumes will be allowed.
In addition to live music and dance performances, expo attendees will also have the chance to meet comics illustrators Marcelo Matere and Andy Poon, and cartoon voice actors Conrad Dickinson, David (Monica) Raynolds, Brian Doe, and Karim Fahmy.
In total, over 30 artist groups will present their fantasy during the three-day festival.
One of the festivals’ main highlights, the grand Halloween Parade starts at 11 am on Sunday, Oct 7 with the route on Granville St (from Drake St to Smithe St) and Howe St (from Smithe St to Drake St) in downtown Vancouver.
Spectators will encounter Star Wars 501st Legion, Ghostbusters of BC, Superheros, as well as ghosts and goblins brought alive via marching bands and dance performances from diverse mythologies, such as the Eire Born Irish Dance, Brazilian Swag, Chinese Taoism Kuan-Kung Association, Vancouver Mikoshi Sakura Kai Society, Korean Traditional Arts Society and more than 20 groups, about 1,000 parade performers.
In a release, the VIHFS said its vision of the event is to “advance arts inspired by comics, anime, video games and mythologies from diverse cultures.”