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Embracing the Halloween spirit


Even our furry friends enjoy a fright
Even our furry friends enjoy a fright

Andrea Stockton, staff writer

October 31, 2011 — The countdown for Halloween is on and The Weather Network offers some tips for making the most of the spooky holiday.

Dressing your children in layers can help keep them warm
Dressing your children in layers can help keep them warm

PICKING THE PERFECT PUMPKIN

Carving your favourite jack-o-latern is a famous tradition each Halloween. And for one farmer in Quebec, conditions couldn't be better this year.

Jim Bryson recently claimed the title for growing the world's largest pumpkin, which weighed in at 1,818.5 lbs (825 kg).

While the results in British Columbia weren't as large, the crop is still very plentiful this season. Despite certain setbacks from the cold, wet spring, farmers say the the pumpkin crop is thriving.

It's a similar story for Ontarians searching for their perfect pumpkin.

“The growing season for pumpkins this year was a little tricky,” says John Downey from Downey's Farm Market. “It was very wet in our area in the spring, which delayed planting a little bit and then it turned dry and we were able to get our crop in...and now we have a pretty decent crop.”

If you picked your pumpkin early, Downey suggests keeping an eye on the weather.

“If there's going to be a frost and you bought your pumpkin earlier, throw a towel over it for the night because you don't like to see them get a lot of freezing. Rain can also sit around the stem, which is not good for them, so you want to keep them in a dry place.”

KEEPING THE TRICK-OR-TREATERS SAFE

Once the perfect pumpkin is picked and carved and last minute touches are added to the costume, it's important to remember some safety tips while trick-or-treating.

The weather isn't always cooperative and some places may see a dip in temperatures. Experts suggest dressing your kid in layers to ensure they stay warm in their costume. Adding reflection to a costume can also be handy to help drivers identify trick-or-treaters at night.

Constable Tony Vella with the Toronto Police adds that setting up a buddy system before you head out is a good idea.

“When you're trick-or-treating, go with a friend of yours. Ensure that you take care of each other. When you're going up to a house, make sure you have each other's back and parents do the same thing, go out with other parents as well.”

What's your idea of a perfect pumpkin?
What's your idea of a perfect pumpkin?

LOOKING FOR A FRIGHT?

Halloween is certainly a holiday for all ages, and the annual Fright Nights hosted in Vancouver is described as one of the most haunted experiences.

“It's an adult or teenage experience and it's extremely scary,” says Laura Ballance with Fright Nights. “It's rides, it's haunted houses, we have live shows and it's a Halloween experience geared at the post trick-or-treat crowd.”

Whatever your night of frights entails, be sure to check the Halloween forecast before heading out .

You can also upload your favourite Halloween photos or videos, which could be featured on The Weather Network on TV.

Happy Halloween from The Weather Network!

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