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What’s Hot Across Canada in October


Celebrate the life and music of Roy Orbison, the man Elvis Presley once described as the greatest singer on earth, who became an influential pioneer of American rock ’n’ roll with hits like Pretty Woman, It’s Over and more in the face of continuous personal tragedies.  Dark Star: The Life & Times of Roy Orbison plays at the Mayfield Dinner Theatre until November 7.


From October 20 – 24, film buffs and cartoon fans flock to the Ottawa International Animation Festival, the largest event of its kind in North America. This year offers up independent Japanese animation, Academy Award winning flicks, and a family-friendly competition where a jury of youths pick the best films.

On October 22 and 23, the country’s first professional hip hop dance troupe, Culture Shock Canada, performs a choreographers’ showcase with the slickest moves pulled from the streets. Dedicated to innovative performance and artistic development, this group also emphasizes community development by reaching out to youths using the power of dance.

Canadian Rockies

As the snow starts falling, over 10,000 outdoor enthusiasts flock to the annual Banff Mountain Festivals, October 30 – November 7. Check out screenings of the world’s best mountain films, readings from top adventure writers or hit up a panel discussion, seminar or presentation by prominent mountain personalities.


Sci-fi fans take note: Halifax is the centre of the universe from October 29 – 31. The Lord Nelson Hotel on South Park Street hosts the Hal-Con Sci Fi Convention. The out-of-this-world event includes workshops, gaming sessions, a masquerade ball and more. Several sci-fi actors will be on hand, including Walter Koenig (Chekov of Star Trek fame).


Acclaimed author of the bestselling Life of Pi, Yann Martel, is joined by a number of Canadian contemporaries, including Jane Urquhart, as well as international heavyweights, like If Only It Were True scribe Marc Levy, for Calgary WordFest. Running October 12 – 17, the 15th annual festival features some the world’s best literary talent, speaking and reading selections from their works, in a variety of venues around the city.

Showcasing all things ink, the Alberta Bound Tattoo and Arts Festival invades the BMO Centre from October 15 – 17, for three full days of guest artists, vendors and on-stage tattooing competitions.

Interior Design Show West runs from October 14 – 17 at the new Vancouver Convention Centre. Catch guest speakers Sarah Richardson and Karim Rashid as they share design and decorating tips. The Vancouver International Film Festival is on until October 15. Watch more than 350 films from 80 countries.


Theatre is always a hot ticket in Toronto, and among October’s openings are the Australian drag-queen adaptation Priscilla Queen of the Desert The Musical—based on the cult-classic film of the same name, it debuts on October 12, while October 20 marks the return of ever-popular Wicked, which tells the “true” story of two witches in the Land of Oz.

A somewhat more sedate pursuit is also celebrated this month, as the annual International Festival of Authors brings acclaimed wordsmiths including Jonathan Franzen and David Mitchell to the city from October 20 – 30.


The ECHL’s Victoria Salmon Kings return to the ice this October with thrilling, pro-level action at the Save-on-Foods Memorial Centre. The 2010/11 home opener is October 27 against the Ontario Rain, with games continuing through April. Help cheer on the home team! 

The 8th annual Readers and Writers Festival happens October 14 – 16. Enjoy workshops, readings, seminars and competitions for both experiences and newbie writers.

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