There’s no shortage of Halloween activities in Abbotsford to participate in this year for young and old alike. Whether it’s a haunted corn maze or kids pumpkin carving, you’ll discover your spooky spirit just in time for Halloween. If these aren't enough, check out our Must Visit Fall Destinations in Abbotsford for more ghostly fun.
Maan Farms "Haunted Corn Maze" | Oct 7-31
This year Leatherface and his accomplices have been joined by a band of crazed clowns. Try to survive this terrifying corn maze with many dead ends that are full of surprises. Don’t forget to dress for the weather and remember that you are on a farm. (path of maze is all gravel )
Where: 790 McKenzie Rd.
When: Now until Oct 31, 7pm to 10pm
The Land of Boo | Oct 21-31
Enjoy a super family-friendly Halloween Theme Scavenger Hunt around Highstreet Shopping Centre for your chance to win an iPad, courtesy of London Drugs.
Where: 3122 Mount Lehman Rd.
When: Anytime during Highstreet Shopping Hours
Haunted House for Canucks Place | Oct 29-31
Looking for a scare for a good cause? Check out “Sandpiper Sanitarium Indoor Haunted House” featuring 7 scare rooms. (Not for the faint of heart, recommended 8 yrs of age) Entry into the Haunt is by donation. Suggested donation is $2 pp or $10 per family. 100% of the money goes to the charity.
Where: Sandpiper Sanitarium - 3037 Sandpiper Dr.
When: 6pm to 9pm
5th Annual Trick or Treating | Oct 31
Loads of treats and lots of fun activities planned for the kids this year. Grab your list of trick or treating stops at Oldhand coffee in Historic Downtown. Make sure to bring a non-perishable Food Bank donation and you will receive an entry for the amazing Gift Basket filled with all sorts of goodies from the participating Downtown merchants!
Where: Historic Downtown, Starts at Oldhand Coffee, 2617 Pauline St.
When: 1pm to 5pm
Moo or Boo | Oct 31
EcoDairy is bringing back MOO or BOO for its third year in a row! Families can look forward to games, crafts, cows and more, come on down to the farm, it's all indoors so rain or shine the party's ON!
Where: 1356 Sumas Way
When: 2pm to 6pm
Halloween Trick or Treating | Oct 31
Enjoy a safe, warm and dry place to bring your ghosties for goodies! Look for the orange pumpkin for free candy at participating retailers.
Where: 32900 S Fraser Way
When: 3pm to 4pm only.
Party in the Plaza | Oct 31
Trick or Treat at the 8 themed installations while enjoying the Land of Boo Scavenger Hunt. There will be a photo booth, live music, treat, balloon artist & more!
Where: 3122 Mount Lehman Rd.
When: 5pm to 7pm
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Murat Olcay, show producer and manager for the West Coast Women’s Show, said attendance skyrocketed by 70 per cent 14 years ago when the show was moved from the Vancouver Convention Centre to Tradex.
“The people of the Fraser Valley . . . Surrey, Hope, Mission, Abbotsford, Langley and Chilliwack . . . really embraced the show,” said Olcay. “Last year alone we experienced a 15 per cent increase in attendance over the year before, and that is unheard of in these interesting times.”
He added: “This show is all about the exhibitors, and we have 400 of them. Yes, we’ve had stars coming, including recording artist and humanitarian Bif Naked, renowned interior designers, actors Josh Morrow, Sharon Case and others from The Young and the Restless. They’re great, but a small percentage of women come to the show for the celebrities, they really want the whole experience.”
The West Coast Women’s Show, Oct. 21–23 this year, has grown to become the largest and most successful women’s event in Western Canada, Olcay said. Women come to be “entertained and informed . . . we have a terrific lineup of speakers. It is a unique shopping experience. It’s relationship building with the exhibitors . . . it’s a reaching out. Our visitors like to see the booths. It’s the ultimate girls’ experience.”
The shopping fantasy includes five stages of fashion, wellness and beauty secrets, entertainment, cheese and live calendar firefighters. A second artisan marketplace, for a total of 60 artisans, was added this year because of its popularity when it was introduced in 2015.
Olcay, who is with Encore Productions, has been in the show business for some 30 years. He loves Tradex because it is easy to move the show in, and move it out. “Those huge doors are a real bonus,” he said. “It’s a nice facility. Where else do you find one like that?”
Murat relies on his two adult daughters, his wife and an amazing “team of talented ladies” to get feedback on the shows and to constantly improve them.
He remembers Tradex from the days before the Abbotsford Airport passenger terminal was built and when he and others, who were running home shows at Tradex in the 1990s, were knee-deep in mud to post huge signs in farmers’ fields to point patrons toward the 120,000 square foot facility.
“Back then no one knew Tradex, but now after 25 years, they do. I’ve watched the community and area grow. I’ve appreciated the Tradex renovations, and we’re still here,” he said.
Olcay worked with Ron Price, one of the founders of Tradex when both were with Airshow Canada. “It was a lot of fun.”
“We’d head out of Fort Langley in a floatplane, go to the Gulf Islands for lunch and fly back. At 59, I still don’t feel old. The trick is, like the West Coast Women’s Show teaches: Stay active, stay vital, get the most out of life.”
MEET SOPHIA SUDERMAN, EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR OF THE ABBOTSFORD ARTS COUNCIL.
Q: What is the Abbotsford Arts Council?
Established in 1971, the Abbotsford Arts Council (AAC) is a non-profit society, dedicated to developing and promoting the arts and culture scene in Abbotsford. We embrace accessibility. Essentially, the AAC is a grassroots approach to supporting the arts community in Abby, serving emerging and established artists from diverse backgrounds.
(Sophia at Kariton Art Gallery)
Q: Why do you feel that the AAC is important to Abbotsford?
The arts bring people together by fostering creativity, igniting ‘artist talks’, expanding networks, and creating community. For many artists, the AAC provides their first opportunity to showcase their work. We remove the barriers to entry for artists, frequently rotate exhibits, and offer free admission to Kariton Art Gallery, located at Mill Lake.
Cultural events are an important part of the fabric of our society and what it takes to build relationships. Different cultures are pulled together and engage in dialogue that may not have happened otherwise. For example, our last exhibit, Cultural Treasures, connected artists who shared stories about where they came from.
Another example is Atangard, a community project that emerged out of the transformation of the run-down Fraser Valley Inn into an intentional community for students between the ages of 19 and 35. Colourful artwork lines the walls of this communal living space.
(Atangard communal living space)
Q: What keeps you rooted in this community?
Like a lot of people, I grew up in Abby and have family here, but what I love most is the opportunity that is available. You could look at Abbotsford as missing a lot or seeing the opportunities to make things happen. The younger demographic has stayed here like I did, or moved back after spending time in more developed cities, recognizing that there are markets to serve. Jam in Jubilee is another example. It is successful because people wanted a music scene that highlighted different genres and supported local musical talent. They were receptive and this ‘derelict park’ became iconic for a positive reason.
Cultural consumers move to the city but the entrepreneur stays here. Together, we develop programs and create opportunities as opposed to competing to be a part of over-saturated markets.
Knowing that there are so many others who share my perspective, we work together to achieve our common goals.
(Sophia & Friends down by the river)
Q: What is your response to the opinion that there isn’t much to do in Abbotsford?
We have a lot to choose from actually, but we lack the networks to get the messaging out. See? Another opportunity for anyone who is in the media or communications industry. Personally, I like to spend time outdoors. Everything is easily accessible and close from the Abby Grind to the Discovery Trail. After a fresh snowfall, Ravine Park is perfectly silent and untouched. But, one of my favourite past-times is to sit by a fire down by the river. I need a break from screens and technology… to just spend time being relational again.
This belief that ‘everyone knows everyone’, often perceived as a negative, is a positive in my opinion. When you actually get to know someone, you will care about their success and have more shared experiences. We need people’s voices—their ideas and inspirations. It’s an exciting time to live in Abby.
From October 13th to October 20th, the Abbotsford Centre plays hosts to 4 concerts – each of them legends in their own right. From a country hall-of-famer to the voice of the bayou. From Canadian rock icons to legends of thrash metal. With a lineup like that, the Abbotsford Centre has you covered this October!
ATTENDING ANY OF THESE SHOWS?
Stay the night in Abbotsford! Simply call and quote "Abby Rocks" to receive a 10% discount off the best available rate with these participating hotels:
Quality Hotel 604.870.1050
Sandman Suites Hotel 604.556.7263
Sandman Airport Hotel 604.859.4763
Abbotsford Hotel 604.859.6211
October 13th – Kenny Rogers’ Final World Tour
Experience Grammy Award-winning superstar and Country Music Hall of Fame member Kenny Rogers. He has enjoyed great success during his storied career of nearly six decades, which will be celebrated during his Final World Tour: The Gambler’s Last Deal coming to Abbotsford October 13th.
October 15th | Our Lady Peace & I Mother Earth
Two of Canada’s most beloved and best-selling bands, Our Lady Peace and I Mother Earth featuring Edwin, have announced a legendary cross-Canada tour, kicking off in Abbotsford, BC on Saturday, October 15th with special guests The Standstills.
October 18th | John Fogerty
Fogerty is a true American treasure, one of popular music’s all-time greatest singers, guitar players, and songwriters. Over the past forty-five years, he continues to speak in a powerful way to generations of music makers and music lovers. Come experience his “Rollin on the River” tour at Abbotsford Centre.
October 20th | Slayer
Slayer, with Special Guest Anthrax and Death Angel, will join forces this fall for a seven week North American beat down which is coming to Abbotsford on October 20th! Fans will hear their favorite songs from the band’s 30-year plus discography, as well as a few of the newer songs from Repentless, named “The Metal Album of the Year” by Guitar World.
ATTENDING ANY OF THESE SHOWS?
Stay the night in Abbotsford! Simply call and quote "Abby Rocks" to receive 10% discount off the best available rate with these participating hotels:
A refreshing, crisp breeze, the leaves changing colour, pumpkin-spiced lattés…all signs that fall has arrived. The change of seasons doesn’t mean that we should be spending time indoors. In fact, quite the opposite!
We are talking about colourful pumpkin patches, vibrant apple orchards, daunting corn mazes, bumpin’ hayrides and so much more. Our list of fall destinations has something for everyone.
And, while most are family-friendly, we have a few activities that are better suited for the adult kid in all of us, like craft beer stations and haunted experiences in corn mazes.
So, whether you're looking to stock up on decorative gourds, master the perfect pumpkin pie with locally grown pumpkins, make jars of tree-fresh applesauce, or spend the day having ‘fall family fun’, Abby has you covered.
Come prepared. Bring shoes and pants you can get dirty. And, don't forget to layer.
Family-friendly | Dog-friendly (on leash) | Designed for adults, but fun for the whole family.
Taves Family Farms (Applebarn Pumpkin Farm)
Family-friendly | No dogs | Free admission to the apple orchard and pumpkin patch
Admission for attractions: Applebarn pass includes most attractions. Free for children 2 and under. See website for details).
Open daily until November 1st.
@tavesfarms on Instagram and Twitter and @tavesfamilyfarms on Facebook
Maan Farms COUNTRY EXPERIENCE & ESTATE WINERY
Family-friendly | No dogs | Family-friendly with experiences just for teenagers and adults
Willow View Farms
Family-friendly | No dogs please | No general admission rates
Coming from the east on Highway 1, head to Abby Roadside and then take the Sumas Way exit to Huntingdon Road where you can visit Maan Farms, Taves Farms, and Willow View Farms all within a 10-minute stretch.
Coming from the west on Highway 1, reverse it and take the Sumas Way exit to Huntingdon Rd to visit Maan Farms, Taves Farms and Willow View Farms before heading back on the Highway to hit Abby Roadside.
Although the recent boom of craft beer may make it seem like hops are a new crop to the Fraser Valley, it has been grown in our fertile soil for more than 100 years.
Until the 1940's, the Fraser Valley was a huge hop-growing region but dissipated as demand dropped. Now with 120 local craft breweries and more launching every month, the demand for local hops has returned.
On October 1, it’s this rich tradition BC Hop Company celebrates, as well as the emerging craft beer industry, at the second annual BC Hop Fest at Kinloch Farms on Sumas Prairie.
“What makes it unique is there aren’t festivals focusing on wet-hop beer,” said event organizer Donna Dixon. The festival is timed to coincide with the hop harvest and the beginning of BC craft beer month.
Wet hop, or fresh hop, beer is a challenging type of brewing utilizing the green hops of the harvest. Hops are fragile and don’t survive long after being cut, and are meant to be drunk within weeks of brewing. Wet hops are said to taste different than traditional kiln-dried hops.
“The hops add a vibrancy, a fineness, a definition, and a chlorophyll-driven energy you don’t get in standard hopped beers,” said Dixon.
Kinloch Farms grows some of the hops used for the festival and is the only hop farm in Abbotsford. Using the best European technology to preserve the quality of the hops, they’ve just completed building a world-class processing plant.
Traditional large-scale processing involves drying thousands of pounds of hops over direct fired furnaces and can take up to three days from harvest to bailing. This European technology uses indirect heat and air conditioning so the hops are in final bailing condition in less than one day.
“We’re very excited because we grow hops and process them and a lot of the breweries attending are using our hops,” said Dixon.
More than 30 of the province’s best craft breweries are bringing their fresh-hopped beer to this year’s BC Hop Fest. Attendees will not only get to sample fresh-hop beer but also enjoy field and plant tours, take in a panel talk from local brewers discussing how they use wet hops, learn home brew tips and tricks, shop at the artisan marketplace, and take in live entertainment.
“Breweries love coming out here to the Fraser Valley because they can engage with a new customer base. Customers love the breweries coming to them.”
Last year’s event sold out so they’ve added more space for this year’s event, which happens rain or shine. Tickets to the 19+ event are only available in advance.
BC Hop Fest
October 1, 2016
1 p.m. to 6 p.m.
1905 Cole Road, Abbotsford BC
Robyn Roste lives and works in Abbotsford. She loves telling stories and learning more about her city. All photo credit: PhotoArt by Simpson & BC Hop Co.
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Like a giant jigsaw puzzle or a game of Tetris, the latest motorhomes, truck campers, fifth-wheels and more fit perfectly into Tradex for the annual Snowbird RV Show and Sale.
How do they do it? Brad Styba of Tradex knows the strategy. “The dealers know their space dimensions and have to fit them in, keeping in mind the requirements for aisle width and emergency exits,” he said.
And if you ask show producer Amanda Henschell or show manager Jeanette Good, they’d agree with Styba, bringing all those rigs under one roof in some 140,000 square feet of space is a well-planned exercise.
“It’s quite amazing to see the transformation,” said Henschell.
More than 50 exhibitors participate in the four-day show, including resorts, parts and service experts, accessories and propane specialists.
The event has proven to be Greater Vancouver’s largest fall recreational vehicle show drawing crowds of people year after year interested in some of the most luxurious motorhomes to the most economical tent trailers.
“The dealers offer seasonal savings at the RV shows and the one-stop shopping selection coupled with our supporting vendors and seminars makes the Snowbird RV Show a must on your to-do list,” explained Henschell.
RV travel advice, winterizing and do-it-yourself seminars consistently offer information that goes a long way in ensuring a comfortable experience in wilderness settings, well-equipped campsites or on the road with all the amenities of home.
“MTD Promotions has been running the RV shows at Tradex for more than 20 years now,” said Henschell. “We’ve partnered with Tradex since the inaugural show. This year we have six Lower Mainland dealers that offer top brands and selection . . . but we have much more than RVs, including kayaks, boats, ATVs, campgrounds, cooking and storage solutions, maintenance and performance products.”
This year’s show runs Sept. 22 – 25 and features a roving RV family of 14, the Kellogg family from Colorado, who will be sharing their extensive North American experiences on the road in a 36-foot RV.
Net proceeds from the event are donated to charity, with more than $1.3 million raised to date by both the Earlybird (held in February at Tradex) and Snowbird RV shows.
Want a taste of what guest speakers will be talking about? Check this out:
• Learn to trouble-shoot your RV plumbing and stop things like leaks, squeaks, low pressure, malfunctioning sensors and other issues.
• If you are planning a trip to a southern destination you may want to attend the Canadian Snowbird Association’s seminar on cross-border travel tips which outlines insurance needs, your rights, the number of days you are allowed out of the country and what to expect at the border.
Since it’s Tradex’s 25th anniversary, you’ll want to enjoy some of the celebratory scratch tickets available at the door. You could win soft drinks, concession items, parking passes and event tickets. A March 6, 2017 grand prize of a one-night stay at the Sandman Abbotsford Airport, breakfast for two and a $75 gift certificate to Greek Islands Restaurant will be awarded through the Tradex website.
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While walking through Historic Downtown Abbotsford, you’ll come across a mix of eclectic and unique stores as well as our favourite long time shopping destinations. From old vinyl & cool clothing to vintage furniture & local treasures; Downtown has something for you. Here are 6 places to check out on your next visit.
Tip: No one should shop hungry so grab a bite at Harvest Grill 'n' Greens, Duft and Co. or Bow and Stern - delicious local food for you to try.
Montrose & George General Store
Combining community spirit with a fresh take on merchandise, M&G focuses on quality over quantity. You will discover a unique range of woman's apparel, jewelry, home decor, art and gifts at this welcoming storefront in Downtown Abbotsford.
33771 George Ferguson Way | 604-744-1744 | Website
As one of Western Canada’s largest bookstores, Hemingway’s is the place to find 1000’s of new and used books. Be sure to check out huge selection of vinyl downstairs for you old school music enthusiasts.
33765 Essendene Ave. | 604-855-1894 | Website
Strung Out on Beads
Beaders and non beaders alike will enjoy the colour and sparkle of Strung Out on Beads. From plastic and glass to semi-precious and Swarovski items, their selection is fantastic and worth the stop.
33735 Essendene Ave. | 604-852-8677 | Website
Come discover lots of vintage goodness at Spruce Collective, selling locally made home decor items, artisanal jewellery and some cool clothing. While you’re there, stop by their sister store “The Market” which features a curated collection of all-vintage finds and antique furniture.
2622 Montrose Ave. | 604-855-0506 |Website
Find great brands and innovative kitchen products that you can trust. The friendly and knowledgeable staff can answer any questions you have or maybe just provide you with some kitchen inspiration.
2645 Montrose Ave. | 604-746-1232 | Website
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Vereniki, prozelky, worldly deeds draw thousands to MCC Festival for World Relief
Thousands of people flock to the annual Mennonite Central Committee (MCC) Festival for World Relief at Tradex, not only to contribute to the organization’s response to basic human needs and world peace and justice in more than 60 countries, but to enjoy camaraderie and to savour plates of mouth-watering food.
Lineups for delicious
The lineups for vereniki can be long because the cottage-cheese filled perogies are a staple that no one can say no to and the aroma at Tradex is almost hypnotizing. One year the sale went through 25,000 vereniki, 750 pounds of farmer sausage and so many porzelky (raisin dumplings) that it took 800 pounds of flour and 400 pounds of raisins to make them.
Dora Hoeppner, relief sale coordinator, and her husband George mark their 14th year with the fundraiser this year. “It’s a great, fun event, and we have a huge attendance. It has something for all ages . . . arts and craft sales, auctions, activities just for children and of course the delicious food,” said Dora.
On Sept. 16-17 it will be the couple’s MCC auction and relief sale farewell, one that comes with sweet sadness.MCC operates scores of relief sales across North America, and Abbotsford’s is one of the biggest and most generously supported.
When is a loaf of bread worth a quarter million dollars?
Dora said the traditional and symbolic auctioning of a loaf of bread has hit a high of $250,000 over the years from a multitude of combined bidders. An auction of handcrafted quilts also garners a lot of financial support.
The two-day event at Tradex, including fundraisers and dinners held earlier in the year, raised a record of $856,000.
“Why do I do it? Most compelling for me and my husband is the cause, the work of MCC and the tremendous amount of relief and development around the world,” said Dora, who is happy to hand the committee work to successor Hannah Toews “who is already on staff at MCC.”
“It’s time for a fresh vision, young energy,” said Dora, adding that the Tradex staff has been phenomenal. They are helpful and go beyond the call of duty.
He saved our bacon—literally
She fondly remembers the panic one year when the MCC team started unpacking some rented chafing dishes that keep things like rice, farmer sausage and samosas hot. “We soon discovered they did not come with the required inserts. We were worried, but Bill Tavares, our event manager at Tradex came through. He got them from Tradex’s own kitchen and literally saved our bacon.”
The relief sale and auction moved to Tradex in 2002 after it outgrew the Abbotsford Agrifair grounds. The event was launched 47 years ago in Chilliwack.
This year there is a large silent auction component and many items will be packages, including ski trips and stays at bed and breakfasts.
Dora and George own a hobby farm in Chilliwack . . . “so we won’t be just sitting around in 2017. I wouldn’t want to do the festival without him,” she said.
But don’t be surprised if the tempting aromas at Tradex bring the retired couple back again next year, not to work but just for a little “sampling.”
Sip, Savour and Share on the Abbotsford Beer & Wine Tour! Meet all the local craft breweries & wineries and start tasting the unique flavours of our valley. From honey mead and berry fruit wines to salted stouts and raspberry ales, you'll discover something new. Download your tour map here or pick a copy up from one of the locations below. Cheers!
At Field House Brewing Co., we believe it’s about a full craft beer experience, we brew great beer that we love and want to share with our community and beyond. We’ve also created a unique gathering place for friends and family to create new experiences and learn more about the world of craft beer. Whether you are new to craft beer or a seasoned pro - we offer a range of styles, all with a high drinkability factor and we’re always searching for new inspiration and ideas. Cheers.
2281 West Railway St
Old Abbey Ales brews and serves 30 beers on tap. Brewed with the finest ingredients and employing the time-tested traditions of Belgian beer brewing methods with West Coast creativity affectionately called Belgian Forward. Visit our tasting room for pints, flights, and growler fills.
1A-30321 Fraser Hwy
Ravens Brewing Company is inspired by the agricultural roots surrounding the Abbotsford area. We will be brewing European and West Coast beers, respecting the ingredients traditionally found in these great brews. Working with local growers and suppliers to craft great beers full of character and style, we look forward to welcoming you to our tasting room.
2485 Townline Rd
A culmination of three generations of farmers, has brought forth a taste of true distinction. From ground to glass, Maan Farms wines are soley produced here, leaving no room for anything less than the best. Showcasing wines made from Maan Farms mouth-watering berries, expanding to now include grape wines, and a VIP Wine Club. Visit our fun family farm for our tasting room, great country food and family activities.
790 McKenzie Rd
Believed to be the oldest known alcoholic beverage, Mead or Honey Wine was first discovered by the Samarians in Mesopotamia thousands of years ago. Campbell’s Gold produces these ancient elixirs including the traditional Mead. In addition, they offer Pyment (honey wine & grapes), Melomel (honey wine with fruit or berries), Metheglin (spiced honey wine), and Cysor (honey wine with apple juice/cider).
2592 Lefeuvre Rd
Mt. Lehman Winery is a family owned boutique winery specializing in small lots of premium naturally made wines. Come tour
our beautiful farm and vineyard where we have over 15 acres planted of a variety of grapes including Pinot Noir (our flagship wine), Pinot Grigio, Chardonnay, Merlot, and others. While you’re here, drop by our tasting room to sample our unique award winning wines.
5094 Mt. Lehman Rd
Join us at Singletree, a family operated Vineyard and Winery located in Mt.Lehman. The site where the farm is located has a rich farming history, with activity starting in the late 1800’s. We are proud of our focused portfolio of wines, crafted by family member and winemaker, Andrew Etsell. We welcome you to taste a new generation of wines in our rustic tasting room and also enjoy the vineyard and surrounding area in our licensed picnic area located right beside our winery.