Parade of Lost Souls 2010

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UPDATE: The Parade of Lost Souls is going on, however, it has been scaled back in terms of size and scope. See here for more details.

Every year, except for last year as it was a planning year, Commercial Drive in East Vancouver hosts what is arguably one of the better parades this city puts on. Dubbed the Parade of Lost Souls, the Saturday before Halloween night Commercial Drive is transformed into eerie wonderland. The parade pays homage to the true roots of Hallows Eve, back before Charlie Brown and the Peanut gang came along.

This is one parade that you have to attend. So put on your costumes and head to the drive, you won’t be disappointed.

Parade of Lost Souls is a powerful antidote to the cartoonish, commercialized version of Halloween (aka All Hallows Eve aka Samhain aka Day of the Dead) that predominates in our North American culture.

Honour the Dead and Wake the Living! is the cry that rises up from the procession winding its way through alleyways and schoolyards, peopled with the hideous and the beautiful in their sublime splendour. They light fireworks to frighten away the evil spirits and paint their faces with devilish grins. They make shrines to loved ones and pray for the peace of their souls. They celebrate the creative power inherent in death and the dark places, rebirthing themselves by letting go of the fear that these concepts universally engender.

This is the one parade where the community gets involved as houses are elaborately decorated, citizens of The Drive join in, the unmistakable haunting drum sounds proliferate throughout the Drive and of course the rest of the citizens of Vancouver definitely get in the spirit of Halloween as they come dressed from the usual commercial costumes to the downright eerie.
To see what I’m talking about look at this video if you got a few minutes.

What: 2010 Parade of Lost Souls: Secret Souls Walk
When: Saturday, October 30th, 2010
Where: Commercial Drive
Time: 5pm to 10pm

Image: source

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