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Vancouver Horror Nights at Halloweeen

Vancouver Horror Nights

Vancouver Horror Nights is one of Metro Vancouver’s top Halloween attractions. It’s an indoor series of haunted mazes with live actors in Port Coquitlam.

We visited the haunted attraction for the first time in mid-October of 2021 and loved it! It was impressive! We especially loved the theatrical aspect of it. The live actors were all really good. The sets were also first-rate.

Last year Vancouver Horror Nights took place at the Giggle Dam Dinner Theatre in Port Coquitlam. The venue wasn’t being used as a theatre because of the COVID-19 pandemic, so it was the perfect place for the Halloween attraction.

The attraction is back again in 2022, but this time at a different venue. This year’s location and other details are to be confirmed. It promises, however, to be bigger and better than ever!

 

Vancouver Horror Nights

 

Port Coquitlam’s Vancouver Horror Nights

Giggle Dam Dinner Theatre is a popular place in Port Coquitlam. It normally offers live theatre-style entertainment while you eat your dinner. For most of 2020 and 2021 they weren’t able to operate because of COVID-19 and restrictions related to live theatre. They were, however, able to run a haunted house during the Halloween season both years.

Unable to offer their regular dinner shows, in 2020 the Giggle Dam launched Vancouver Horror Nights. Due to its tremendous success, they ran it again in 2021. 2022 dates and details are to be confirmed.

Vancouver Horror Nights is a large haunted attraction that features maze experiences with different themes in the month of October. 2020 was the event’s inaugural year.

In addition to three different maze themes, Vancouver Horror Nights also has a Zombie Café & Bar. Guests can enjoy carnival-inspired menu items like popcorn, hot dogs, mini donuts and more. There’s beer and wine for adults as well, along with some other Halloween-themed alcoholic beverages.

 

Port Coquitlam at Halloween
Shaughnessy Street in Port Coquitlam

 

Where is Vancouver Horror Nights

The haunted attraction has been held in recent years at the Giggle Dam Dinner Theatre at 2616 Shaughnessy Street in Port Coquitlam. When it happens there the interior of the restaurant/theatre gets completely redesigned for the occasion. (Note: In 2020 Vancouver Horror Nights will be at a new, different location. Exact details, however, are to be confirmed.)

The Giggle Dam building is in the heart of the city. The exit to the attraction is on Shaughnessy Street, which is kind of Port Coquitlam’s “Main Street.” The entrance to the attraction is at the back of the building.

The photo at the top of this article is of the venue on Shaughnessy Street. You go around the corner and access the entrance from the back lane. That’s where you’ll find the admission counter.

After checking in, you go into an initial waiting area where you’ll also find the Zombie Café & Bar. From there you go outside to the front where you can get your photo taken in front of a giant mechanized monster before heading to the entrance of the theatre and the maze. When it’s your turn, the doorkeeper lets you and the rest of your group in.

 

Haunted Attraction Admission

In 2021, general admission to the Xtreme Fear maze cost around $30. The general rate for the Blackout maze was about $40.

For folks who wished to skip all lines in either of the scary maze variations, VIP tickets were about $100 per person.

Admission to the family-friendly Boogeyman Bash, meanwhile, cost about $18 per person or $55 for a family of four.

Due to COVID-19, all guests were required to book a timeslot, regardless of which maze variation they attended. Although you could purchase as many tickets as you wanted, only up to six people were allowed to enter the maze at the same time.

 

Food Area at Horror Nights
The Zombie Café & Bar

 

What to Expect at Vancouver Horror Nights

Vancouver Horror Nights boasted three different maze variations in 2021. Two of them were designed to scare people. The third one was more kid-friendly. When we went, we did the Xtreme Fear version and it was awesome!

The maze itself was the same for all three maze themes. The main differences were the amount of light inside and the scariness of the actors.

Xtreme Fear nights were full of scary actors. On Blackout nights it was about the same, but with almost no light. Boogeyman Bash days were family-friendly and designed for younger kids.

With all three themes, guests made their way through a maze inside the theatre. First, after you arrived, you had to check in. You then got in a lineup for the attraction. You also had the option of getting some snacks or drinks (including alcoholic ones for adults) at the Zombie Café & Bar.

After waiting in line, you and your party were allowed to enter the maze. Masks were required in indoor areas, as was proof of vaccination.

Inside the attraction you made your way through a series of passageways. There were about twelve rooms in total, each with a different theme.

Throughout its various rooms and passageways, the venue was full of live costumed characters, and they were all really good. During Xtreme Fear and Blackout nights the actors often jumped out at you. Sometimes they didn’t look real, or at least not until it was too late and they surprised you! During Boogeyman Bash times, the actors were kid-friendly and not so scary.

 

Vancouver Horror Nights Photo Opportunity

 

Xtreme Fear and Blackout Mazes

With a dozen different themed rooms, Xtreme Fear was a brand-new haunted maze at Vancouver Horror Nights. In 2021 it ran most days in October. There were a number of impressive animatronics, special effects and live actors to see. Flashing lights, lasers, fog machines and other cool elements were also part of the experience.

The Blackout maze variation ran on Wednesdays. It was essentially the same as the Xtreme Fear maze, but in near pitch black darkness. Each guest was given a glow stick, which was the only source of light in the maze. It was very dark inside!

On average, it took a total of between 8 and 15 minutes to traverse through the maze from start to finish. When we went, we navigated through Xtreme Fear and it took about 10 minutes. We’re guessing the Blackout maze took a little longer. These two editions of the attraction were very scary, with actors jumping out at you. Both were only recommended for brave folk ages 13 and older.

 

Boogeyman Bash

Unlike the other two maze variations, the Boogeyman Bash was a family-friendly event intended for kids. Taking place both indoors and outdoors, the event lasted about one hour. There were several activities to enjoy including musical chairs, face painting, a costume parade, and arts and crafts.

The maze component of the event was made for kids between the ages of 6 and 12. All terrifying parts of the maze were removed during the day and the lights were on. However, there was still some fake blood and dead bodies, so the maze wasn’t recommended for very young children.

The Boogeyman Bash happened on the weekends of October 23rd and 24th, and October 30th and 31st. It ran from 11:00 am until 4:00 pm each day.

 

Spooky Halloween Statue Character

 

Tips and Advice

Below are some suggestions and extra information to help you make the most out of your Halloween experience in Port Coquitlam.

TIP #1: If you get the chance to visit this Halloween attraction, go! It’s really good! It also takes place at a dinner theatre venue which is normally a restaurant with live entertainment. It has been a haunted house in October for the past couple of years because of COVID-19. Hopefully they will run Vancouver Horror Nights again next year, but they might not. Go while you can! It’s worth it!

TIP #2: Try to go earlier in the season and near the start of the night. That’s when the crowds are smaller. As the evening progresses, the lineup gets bigger.

TIP #3: Between checking in, getting your snacks and beverages, having your photo taken, waiting in line and seeing all the frightening scenes inside, expect the experience to last for about an hour or so. Sometimes you might be there for longer and at other times possibly less.

TIP #4: There are stairs inside the attraction. That’s important to know for people who are in wheelchairs or have other mobility issues. The venue is not wheelchair accessible.

TIP #5: Some of the rooms inside the attraction have flashing lights which might not be suitable for people with light sensitivities. There is artificial fog in some places as well (including in one really cool room which also features laser lights).

TIP #6: If you like live comedy theatre, especially not always so politically-correct humour, go to the Giggle Dam when they are offering a show and dinner. The shows are fun.

 

About Giggle Dam Dinner Theatre

Giggle Dam Dinner Theatre has been operating for about ten years. They offer a variety of live entertainment shows with dinner throughout the year (or at least in years without global pandemics). Sometimes their shows are musicals and sometimes they are comedies.

As Giggle Dam Dinner Theatre says on its website, they are kind of like Saturday Night Live, but with dinner. Reviews say the humour is frequently hilarious, witty, sarcastic and more often than not quite politically incorrect. The singing is typically excellent. Don’t be surprised if, as a member of the audience, you get picked on or volunteered to do something. It’s a lot of fun!

Giggle Dam Dinner Theatre runs four or so different main shows each year, including a Christmas-themed one beginning in November. They also have a special New Year’s Eve-themed show in late December.

Most shows come with a four-course dinner. For the dinner and show the cost is typically around $70 dollars or so. Special events though, like their New Year’s Eve parties for example, cost more. Alcoholic beverages are extra.

Interestingly, related to Halloween, the venue is said to be “Canada’s Most Haunted Theatre” because it was the site of a gruesome murder in 1993.

Other tragic events have also taken place inside the building, and a variety of paranormal sightings have been reported over the years. As you can imagine, this only adds to the already-spooky experience during the company’s Vancouver Horror Nights productions (which, unlike most of their shows, don’t include dinner).

 

Other Information

For more information about the Halloween attraction, check out the Vancouver Horror Nights Facebook page.

To learn about the restaurant/theatre venue, see the Giggle Dam Dinner Theatre website.

Other Halloween-related articles that may be of interest include the following: