October 24, 2013

Fashion, travel, ghost-hunt opportunities in Montreal

By STEVEN HOWELL Press-Republican

---- — MONTREAL — Get a scare, book a trip, buy a designer dress or catch a flick — each new season brings unique events in Montreal.


The city first takes a fashion step forward with The Big Fashion Sale by Quebec Designers. Known in French as the Braderie, the event features the surplus wares of some 100 Quebec-based clothing designers including labels such as Bodybag by Jude, Harricana, Against Nudity and Marie Saint Pierre. Women’s and men’s ready-to-wear, children’s fashions, coats, sportswear and accessories are all present and accounted for. 

It’s held today through Sunday, Oct. 27, at Old Montreal’s Bonsecours Market, 350 St. Paul E. For questions, call (514) 866-2006 or visit


Next, the Montreal International Travel and Tourism Show celebrates 25 years of literally getting out of town with more than 100 countries represented by tourism offices, tour operators and travel agents. It’s a great way to plan your next getaway.

Highlighted this year is adventure and culinary tourism as well as two destinations making their Tourism Show debut: Panama and Nicaragua.

The show is held Friday, Oct. 25, through Sunday, Oct. 27, at Place Bonaventure, 800 de la Gauchetiere W. Adult admission costs $13. Call (514) 527-9221 or visit to learn more.


The seasonal Halloween fun begins at Pointe-a-Calliere, the Montreal Museum of Archaeology and History, which presents its annual “Jack O’Lantern: Halloween at Pointe-a-Calliere,” an animated, guided tour that tells the cultural origins of Halloween.

Joining Jack are a few ghoulish friends, including a cat-like witch and Gwynedd the Druid magician, who knows the secret of light. Jack and friends lead the way (in English) at 12:45 and 3 p.m. Saturday and Sunday, Oct. 26 and 27. 

The event is at 350 Place Royale in Old Montreal. Admission includes access to all exhibitions and costs $20 for adults, $42 for families, $16 for seniors, and $7 for youths ages 6 to 12. Call (514) 8729150 or visit for more information.


Fantomes Montreal offers a special Halloween edition Ghost Hunt where visitors will meet some Old Montreal phantoms of the New France kind who share the details of their lives — and untimely deaths.

The 90-minute ghost hunts take place at 6:30 p.m. Oct. 25, 26, 30, and 31, with an extra walk at 8:30 p.m. on Oct. 25 and 26. The tour costs $22 for adults, $18.50 for students, and $12.50 for children ages 12 and under. The tour departs at 360 St. Francois Xavier St. For questions, call (514) 844-4021 or visit


It’s the last weekend to enjoy a few scares as La Ronde Amusement Park winds down the season with Fright Fest, its annual fall festival that offers “thrills by day, fright by night.”

The thrills come in the form of theme-park rides — still open for one last fling. The chills come in later in the evening when the park offers a haunted midway, the Massacre Museum, a scary new doll’s house, a vampire lair, a cemetery and a new lounge owned by zombies.

La Ronde is open the weekend of Oct. 26 and 27. Tickets cost $48.99 for those 54 inches and taller, and $42.99 for those shorter than that. Call (514) 397-2000 or visit for more information.


Finally, two film fests take to the big screen in November. 

Cinemania highlights the best of French cinema with films subtitled in English. It runs Thursday, Nov. 7, through Sunday, Nov. 17, at Imperial Cinema. Visit for details. 

LGBT themes are explored at Image + Nation, which showcases lesbian, gay and independent films from around the world. It runs the last week of November into early December. Visit to learn more.

Steven Howell is the author of Montreal Essential Guide, a Sutro Media iPhone travel app available at