Excerpt from a National Post article featuring local historian John Adams
On the other side of the country, tourism promoters in Victoria, B.C., have picked this Halloween to brand itself hard as British Columbiaâ€™s â€œmost haunted city.â€
â€œA number of years ago, people did not like to talk about this sort of thing,â€ said John Adams, founder of Victoriaâ€™s Ghostly Walks walking tours.
He added, â€œthis year alone, Iâ€™ve noticed a huge increase in Victoria of places that are quite willing to admit theyâ€™re haunted, but also to promote the fact.â€
He first stumbled upon the lure of ghost tourism while working with the Old Cemeteries Society, a local group founded to curb vandalism in the cityâ€™s famed Ross Bay Cemetery by leading weekly history tours.
One year, on a lark, Mr. Adams invited an author to drop by the historic burial ground to host a ghost tour.
â€œWeâ€™d been getting an average of 15 to 20 people on our history tours,â€ he said. â€œSuddenly, there were 75 people there â€¦ in the pouring rain.â€
John McKay / Postmedia News fileRoss Bay Cemetery in Victoria, B.C.
Mr. Adams is in good company. Ghost tours â€” often performed by guides in spooky period dress â€” are now a feature of virtually every major Canadian city, from Quebec City to Calgary to Saskatoon.
Pat Hancock, author of the Haunted Canada childrenâ€™s book series, said these ghost tours can lean on a pretty rich library of existing ghost stories.
â€œWhat I do believe has changed is that other people have decided thereâ€™s money to be made; thereâ€™s gold in the hills,â€ said the author who â€” notably â€” does not believe in ghosts.
Across Canada, as businesses find themselves swarmed by nightly crowds of ghost tours, they are quickly motivated to start playing up their paranormal side.
Read Full Article Here