The walking dead will take over downtown Trail this weekend.
The city is hosting its first-ever Spooktacular Pumpkin Fest on Farwell Street Saturday, a family-fun party that is all about bringing residents into the core and strengthening partnerships between businesses and organizations.
“This initiative itself was a result of people saying we need to attract people downtown, how do we get more people into downtown?” said Betty Anne Marino, promotions committee chair.
“Come on out community, come join the fun and contribute your ideas and help us all build it forward.”
The Downtown Opportunities and Action Committee is expanding on a haunted house fundraiser formerly put on by Century 21 and Ferraro Foods about five years ago. Proceeds from Saturday’s event will go to the United Way and food banks at the Trail United Church and St. Andrews Anglican Church.
Back by popular demand, residents can expect to “scream” and see some “ugly faces” in the Century 21 haunted house open from 10 a.m. until 2 p.m.
The Texas Chainsaw Massacre crew, zombies and demons will be among the guests of the house, where an assortment of soft brains and eyeballs will be on the menu.
Locals of all ages are encouraged to get into the spirit and come dressed in their scariest or most creative costume. The best looks will be chosen in Kootenay Savings Credit Union’s costume contest at 11 a.m., with registration at 10 a.m.
Face painting by Miss Trail hopefuls will be available for the kids, along with PT the Clown performances running at 10:30 a.m., 12:30 p.m. and 1:30 p.m.
A Kiwanis free skate will cut into the day from 1-2 p.m. at the kids’ rink in the Memorial Centre.
Those looking to get a head start on Christmas shopping should check out some of the deals downtown at a sidewalk sale throughout the day.
The Visac Gallery will have an onslaught of carvers on hand from 10 a.m. until noon during its pumpkin carve-off held at the gallery. The jack-o-lanterns will later be raffled off down at the festival grounds, where pumpkins again will be one of the main attractions.
A panel of culinary experts will dig into delicious entries at a pumpkin pie contest, where judgment will run from 10 a.m. until noon.
There will be pumpkin pie for everyone and coffee at a food bank table, where donations of non-perishable items will gladly be accepted.
Those looking for other fall-inspired treats can head out to various downtown eateries participating in the Taste of Downtown, a dining experience where participants will be handed a passport that can later earn them a prize drawn that day.
To carry on the night, Trail’s Royal Theatre will play the Haunted Mansion at 4:30 p.m.
The downtown group committed to revitalizing the core will also be on hand to gather input from the public and answer questions.
After starting up this spring, the group has hired a consultant to come up with a master plan that will highlight steps that can be taken to breathe life back into the city all while making their presence known through community projects like the fence wrap at the former Esso and Petro Canada sites and now its first community event.
“Things are ripe, you can almost feel it, it’s just about to happen but it’s not quite there, yet,” said Marino, who also sits on the committee. “We have to remodel ourselves for the future and that means we need to do things differently and this is just one event that’s beginning to look at that.”
For more details on the Spooktacular Pumpkin Fest, visit http://www.trail.ca/Downtown.php