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Fright Nights at Playland

Fright Nights at Playland

It’s Halloween time again. That means it’s also time for the spooktacular Fright Nights at Playland! With 15 rides, 7 haunted houses, live shows and an ensemble of roving actors, it’s a full evening of freakish entertainment.

This year we were lucky enough to be provided with Rapid Passes to Fright Nights (thanks CTV YVR!). Rapid Passes gave us expedited access to each of the haunted houses and 5 of the most popular rides at Playland (The Beast, Hellevator, Atmosfear, Music Express, and the Wooden Roller Coaster). It was very crowded so it was awesome to be able to by-pass the long line ups. With almost no wait time we were able to get on all 5 rides, plus The Corkscrew, Hell’s Gate, and Crazy Beach Party, as well as see all the haunted houses.

The rides were awesome and by the end of the evening I was pretty hoarse from shrieking – in fun and fear.  The Beast is touted as Canada’s most extreme pendulum ride, and it really was quite extreme. We sat in the outward facing seats and held on for dear life! I think I was actually shaking from the adrenaline rush when we got off the ride. The Wooden Roller Coaster was bone-rattling fun and I enjoyed it much more than I was expecting. Built in 1958 this famous ride can only be described as an oldie but a goodie.  After the ride, check out the photos taken on the second drop – the range of facial expressions is good for laugh. My other favourite was Atmosfear which is a giant 360 degree swing 218 feet up in the sky. Oddly enough, being so high wasn’t scary and the views of the city were incredible, making this ride very enjoyable.

The Haunted Houses were fun. Keeper’s Doll Factory and the Haunted Mansion were my favourites but Fear was pretty good too. With the variety of houses there’s pretty much something for everyone on the spectrum of fear.

Here’s a POV video of our fun-filled Fright Night!

If you love all things Halloween and are up for a bit of an adrenaline rush, this could be for you. Fright Nights runs until October 31 so there’s still time to go and face your fears.

Newsies – presented by Broadway across Canada

Newsies – presented by Broadway across Canada

On Tuesday we were lucky enough to go to the opening night of Newsies at the Queen Elizabeth Theatre. The Disney produced Newsies centres around the fictional character of Jack Kelly, the charismatic leader of a group of New York newsboys (newsies) fighting for a better life. The storyline is inspired by the real-life Newsboys Strike of 1899 in New York City. Newsies is a dynamic show with non-stop dancing and action. The show earned eight Tony Award nominations in 2012, including Best Musical, winning Best Choreography and Best Original Score.

Generally speaking I’d say Broadway isn’t typically my thing but both Susannah and I loved it! It was just over 2 hours in length (plus intermission) and was an easy watch. The cast was tightly knit and the newsies really had the audience on their side, fighting “for what’s right”. Joey Barreiroas was wonderful as Jack Kelly and the dancing in the group numbers  was awesome.

I was also really impressed by the stage design and set which consisted of 3 large multi level metal towers which could be transformed quickly into different sets. In it’s stark simplicity it was effective and functional, allowing the action to flow while each scene was being transformed.

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iphone shot of set design taken during intermission

Newsies is playing in Vancouver until July 10 at QE Theatre as part of Broadway across Canada’s 2016-2017 season.

Totally recommended family viewing. Well worth a watch.