Vancouver’s Parade of Lost Souls involves folk in Halloween costumes walking around, listening to music, enjoying live entertainment and having a good time.
The event normally takes place on the weekend just before Halloween. In 2022 Parade of Lost Souls happens on Saturday, October 29th. This year it has an Intergalactic Disco theme.
Halloween Parade of Lost Souls
In years when it does take place, the Parade of Lost Souls happens on the closest Saturday to Halloween in the Commercial Drive neighbourhood of Vancouver. It’s arguably one of the city’s best and most interesting traditional events for adults at Halloween.
In 2022, the parade runs from 7:00 to 10:00 pm. After that there is the after-party which continues from 10:00 pm until around 1:00 am at the Wise Hall. The address for the after-party is 1882 Adanac Street.
In 2022 the Parade of Lost Souls features Thriller Flash Mob workshops, Time Warp Flash Mob workshops and Intergalactic Disco Dance and Costume workshops. See below for details about each.
Lost Souls Flash Mobs
The Thriller Flash Mob workshops happen at 1001 Cotton Drive at Britannia Secondary School. They run in the cafeteria on the Sunday afternoons of October 2nd, 9th and 23rd from 12:00 to 2:00 pm.
At the 2022 event, Thriller Flash Mob participants are asked to attend the first workshop and then use the later workshops as practice. Donations of $10 per session (or at least $5 minimum) are appreciated. Participants learn the choreography of Michael Jackson’s Thriller music video and then continue to practice the dance in preparation for show time (which is on the day of the Parade of Lost Souls).
In addition to the Thriller Flash Mob, there is also a Time Warp Flash Mob. Workshops in preparation for that also happen on the Sundays of October 2nd, 9th and 23rd. They begin after the Thriller Flash Mob Workshops and run from 2:30 until 4:30 pm.
Folks practice the choreography of the Time Warp dance from the Rocky Horror Picture Show. Again, the rehearsals take place at the Britannia Secondary School cafeteria at 1001 Cotton Drive and the cost is between $5 and $10 per session.
The Intergalactic Costume Making workshops are where participants can work on their costumes for parade day. Folks can attend the workshops on October 8th, 15th and 22nd from 3:00 to 5:00 pm at the Canucks Family Education Centre at 1655 William Street. Admission to these sessions is by donation.
For those wanting to participate in the Intergalactic Disco Dance on parade day, dance workshops take place on Saturdays just after the Costume Making Workshops at the Canucks Family Education Centre. The dance workshops run on October 8th, 15th and 22nd from 6:00 to 8:00 pm. Similar to other workshops this year, admission is by donation.
Parade Route Details
The parade route for 2018 wasn’t announced until around midnight on the Friday before the parade. In 2019 (the last year it took place since the pandemic), it was announced around two weeks in advance.
As of the last time we checked in late October, the route for the parade in 2022 hadn’t yet been confirmed. All the event’s website said was that it started at the Britannia Community Centre at 1661 Napier Street in Vancouver. If you go there, the route will be well marked and you can simply follow the crowd.
2019 Parade Route
Similar to the previous year, the parade route in 2019 started at the corner of Napier Street and Commercial Drive and then made its way through the back lanes around the Britannia Community Services Centre and surrounding buildings.
The 2019 procession began in front of the Britannia Library and headed north towards the ice rink. From there it turned west and went to the finish at the tennis courts, although with a couple of fairly significant in-and-out and in-and-around side diversions along the way. Some notable stops in 2019 included the secret dance party and a carving centre.
About the Parade
The Parade of Lost Souls is a grassroots Halloween parade/event that happens on the Saturday closest to Halloween in October. It takes place at a location that isn’t revealed until very close to the date of the parade.
The event takes place somewhere around the neighbourhood of the Britannia Community Centre at 1661 Napier Street. There is a procession down Commercial Drive or some other nearby street. There are also multiple small Halloween-themed live performances scattered around the neighbourhood and several thousand participants roaming around in spooky costumes.
The Parade of Lost Souls is put on by the Dusty Flowerpot Cabaret which is an artist collective of professional and emerging artists based in East Vancouver. As a non-profit event, donations for participation in the parade are strongly encouraged, with $5 being the suggested minimum amount.
An official adults-only after-party usually happens, with tickets most years selling out long in advance.
Lost Souls After-Party
The Lost Souls After-Party is a ticketed event that takes place after the Parade of Lost Souls.
In 2022 the After-Party takes place at the Wise Hall at 1882 Adanac Street. The event is for folks ages 19 or older and it runs from 10:00 pm until 1:00 am.
Tickets for the After-Party are available online as of September at a cost of about $40 each. Expect to see live music and other performances. Tickets are not sold at the door.
Tips and Advice
Below are a few tips to help you make the most out of your experience at the Parade of Lost Souls.
TIP #1: There are folk of all ages at the Parade of Lost Souls, but primarily adults. There is no beer garden and only a small number of food trucks selling things to eat. Plan to have dinner beforehand, plus perhaps a beverage or two to help with the festivities (assuming you’re 19+).
TIP #2: Wear a costume. It’ll add to your fun!
TIP #3: If you’ve never been to the event before, go! It’s a very interesting cultural experience.
TIP #4: If it has been raining in the previous few days (as it often does in October), wear boots. Some areas along the parade route can get muddy.
Check out the Dusty Flowerpot Cabaret website for more information about the Lost Souls Parade and After-Party.
For a list of other Halloween attractions and things to do, click any of the following:
- Lower Mainland Haunted Houses
- Halloween Weekend
- Vancouver Halloween Events
- Vancouver Children’s Halloween Activities
- Adult Halloween Activities