For All Walks of Life
Savanah Tillberg, Arts and Culture Editor
Lakehead University’s Thunder Bay Campus is likely split between people who hate and people who love the city which both call home. Whether you’re indifferent to Thunder Bay because of the climate, the dismal shopping or perhaps you truly believe there’s nothing to do here… I’m here to convert you.
Here at the Argus, we’ve gathered a list of fun fall events and ideas to help you fall in love with the city and blow off some steam during the “beginning of school blues.” If you’re looking for fall fun, check out the list below!
If you have the means to drive just 25 minutes outside of city you should definitely stop off at Belluz Family Farm. Chances are, if you’ve shopped at a local grocery store or eaten at a local restaurant you’ve tried some of Belluz’s delicious produce. Aside from being a food provider for the city, Belluz also holds an annual fall festival every weekend in October. This festival includes homemade pumpkin-related treats, a pick your own pumpkin patch, a charming farm store with handmade crafts and décor and some of the best fresh vegetables in the area! In addition, they have “The Amazing Corn Maze.” Entrance to the colossal maze costs anywhere between $1.00 and $5.00 for admission (which will then be donated to the United Way of Thunder Bay).
Haunted Fort Night
Thunder Bay is home to the famous Fort William Historical Park, a popular tourist attraction that re-creates the most prominent time of the North-West Company and the Canadian Fur Trade. Although visitors can enjoy the excitement at the park all year round, throughout the October weekends you and your friends can experience “Haunted Fort Night!” HFN is a 1.5-hour tour of a historic park converted terrifying town. This year’s theme is “The Witches Plague” and is sure to have some scary surprises in store. It is important to book tickets in advance for this event as they sell out quickly! For booking, tour, and other information check out their event page!
If your fall activities are limited by a bus route we’ve got fall fun ideas for you too! Next time your wandering down town PA stop inside Calico Coffeehouse for their famous Pumpkin Spice Latte! Even if you swear you cannot stand the conventional PSL you should definitely reconsider for this local delicacy, it won’t disappoint. Or if you’re feeling adventurous, I’d recommend their hot apple cider with a flavour shot of caramel! Either way, you will be sure to find your perfect fall beverage on their menu.
We’ve Got Parks!
Once you have your latte in tow you can either stroll up the street to Hillcrest Park to enjoy a panoramic view of the city, or hop back on a bus and explore some of our other beautiful parks and trails. Some other noteworthy parks include Vicker’s Park, Boulevard Lake, and the marina. If you’re feeling motivated, you can also try out one of Thunder Bay’s many beautiful hikes! No matter which direction you head in the city you’re bound to find a great trail to walk or hike. Some Tbay staples include Mt. McKay, the Sea Lion, The Knees of the Giant, and Centennial Park Trail. For a list of nearly all the hikes and trails in our area check out the Superior Hiking Website.
Thunder Bay Country Market
The Thunder Bay farmer’s market is another popular attraction that is available throughout the entire year, however something about the market in the fall just can’t be beat. The market is open Wednesdays from 3:30-6:30pm until December and Saturdays from 8:00am-1:00pm all year round. Whether you go for groceries, to have breakfast, or just to listen to the buskers, there is something for everyone to enjoy. The market features dozens of booths which include local gourmet coffees and teas, several food vendors, natural beauty and personal care products, homemade desserts, jewelry, pottery and so much more! Find the perfect birthday present for a friend or treat yourself to something nice. You’ll get to experience authentic Thunder Bay tastes while supporting local businesses.
Bay Street Film Festival
From September 14th to 17th you can enjoy some local talent at the Bay Street Film Festival. The film festival has been a Thunder Bay tradition since 2005, where the achievements and creations of independent filmmakers are celebrated. The festival focuses on filmmakers working in isolated regions, telling diverse and unique stories, which often reflect Canada’s north. Festival tickets are available at Calico Coffeehouse (grab them at the same time as your PSL), any of the Thunder Bay Public Libraries, or during the festival for $30.00. For a full list of the 50 titles being presented and show times visit the Bay Street Film Festival Website.
Slate River Slaughter Halloween Display
Just outside the city of Thunder Bay (on your way to Belluz Farms) you will pass the Slate River Slaughter display. This event often slides under the radar as it is usually advertised by word of mouth, but it still definitely worth your consideration when planning your weekends. The Slate River Slaughter is a terrifying display organized by two Slate River locals who transform their long country driveway into a bone-chilling-walk-through haunted laneway. With creatures of all types lurking in the shadows this event is sure to live up to all your spooky standards. The dates for the display have yet to be announced, but traditionally it takes place every night from 6:00-10:30pm during the last week of October. Admission is by donation and you can stay updated on more Slate River Slaughter display details by checking out their Facebook page!
Thunder Bay has another pumpkin-related event? YES! We are fall crazy in Northwestern Ontario. Every weekend from September 30th right up until October 9th (including Thanksgiving Monday) between 11am and 5pm you can check out Gammondale Farm’s Pumpkin Fest! The festival is family friendly and admission is $10 ages 2 and up. Some of the events at Pumpkin Fest include tractor-pulled wagon rides, Canada’s largest pumpkin catapult, pumpkin sling-shots, a petting zoo, duck races, and $5 Gentle Giant horse rides. The farm scenery also lends itself well to classic fall pictures with friends.
If you’ve got a wicked school schedule this semester and are looking for even more fun activities, The City of Thunder Bay has an awesome online resource called The Thunder Bay Experience Guide. This user-friendly-online-guide is filled with local events happening year-round and is constantly being updated! Check it out to find more events like the Dandiya Dance Festival, Movie Night at the Marina, ThunderCon, Craft Revival, Haunted Cornfield, The Hunger and much more.
The Argus hopes you have a great start to the term but also reminds you to enjoy our wonderful city and all it has to offer!