| 15.8°C Belfast

Something spooky stirs as Northern Ireland gears up for Halloween

Close

Eoin (7) and Patrick Hunt (13) are pictured at the Raising Spirits haunted house in Ballycastle

Eoin (7) and Patrick Hunt (13) are pictured at the Raising Spirits haunted house in Ballycastle

Witching hour this Halloween weekend as the clocks go back an hour. This means an extra hour in bed for the parents and an extra hour trick or treating for the children on Halloween night

Witching hour this Halloween weekend as the clocks go back an hour. This means an extra hour in bed for the parents and an extra hour trick or treating for the children on Halloween night

Justin Kernoghan

Gracie Ferguson, Lily Buckley and Emma Smyth, all aged three, get ready for Victoria Square'' Halloween party on Friday 29 October

Gracie Ferguson, Lily Buckley and Emma Smyth, all aged three, get ready for Victoria Square'' Halloween party on Friday 29 October

Mother and daughter Claire Louise and Clara Walsh from north Belfast

Mother and daughter Claire Louise and Clara Walsh from north Belfast

Terri Peters (15) from St. Brigid's College is watched by a scary pumpkin at during a Carnival of Light Workshop at the ARC Centre in Skeoge Industrial Estate as preparations continue for the carnival of Light which will form part of this weekend's Banks of the Foyle Halloween Carnival.

Terri Peters (15) from St. Brigid's College is watched by a scary pumpkin at during a Carnival of Light Workshop at the ARC Centre in Skeoge Industrial Estate as preparations continue for the carnival of Light which will form part of this weekend's Banks of the Foyle Halloween Carnival.

Martin McKeown

The Mayoress of Derry Racheal Parkes has a frightening experience with Cordilious (Shari Boyle) at the launch of the Banks of the Foyle Halloween Carnival 2010.

The Mayoress of Derry Racheal Parkes has a frightening experience with Cordilious (Shari Boyle) at the launch of the Banks of the Foyle Halloween Carnival 2010.

Tracey Millar, pictured at the launch of 'Belfast Halloween Howler Party', to raise funds for Macmillan Cancer Support

Tracey Millar, pictured at the launch of 'Belfast Halloween Howler Party', to raise funds for Macmillan Cancer Support

Pic By Paul Moane/Aurora PA

It takes several months to grow the fruit but amazingly just two hours for artist Ray Villafane to sculpt these petrifyingly detailed portraits out of pumpkin.The American model designer and former art teacher uses spoons and a scalpel to carve the innocent orange gourds into Halloween horrors in double quick time.As you might expect Villafane, who has worked for D.C and Marvel comics, is very particular about his pumpkins.'Not all pumpkins will look good and the most important thing about a pumpkin is its weight,' he says.'You need to pick the meatiest pumpkin.'Sometimes I pick up a beautifully shaped pumpkin but when I do I realise that it is not heavy enough. Its wall is just not thick enough for the carving rigours.'I also like a pumpkin with character. One with nobly ridges is good, so that I can utilise that in the carving procedure, like with sculpting noses.'Villafane, 41, has become a minor celebrity in the States and his weird and wonderful work has featured on a range of TV programmes.

It takes several months to grow the fruit but amazingly just two hours for artist Ray Villafane to sculpt these petrifyingly detailed portraits out of pumpkin.The American model designer and former art teacher uses spoons and a scalpel to carve the innocent orange gourds into Halloween horrors in double quick time.As you might expect Villafane, who has worked for D.C and Marvel comics, is very particular about his pumpkins.'Not all pumpkins will look good and the most important thing about a pumpkin is its weight,' he says.'You need to pick the meatiest pumpkin.'Sometimes I pick up a beautifully shaped pumpkin but when I do I realise that it is not heavy enough. Its wall is just not thick enough for the carving rigours.'I also like a pumpkin with character. One with nobly ridges is good, so that I can utilise that in the carving procedure, like with sculpting noses.'Villafane, 41, has become a minor celebrity in the States and his weird and wonderful work has featured on a range of TV programmes.

/

Eoin (7) and Patrick Hunt (13) are pictured at the Raising Spirits haunted house in Ballycastle

A ghoulish amount of spooktacular events have been organised to celebrate Halloween across Northern Ireland this year.

As the scariest day in the calendar nears, final plans have been put in place for All Hallows Eve.

From ghost trains in Belfast to jousting shows in Larne and a festive craft fair in Florencecourt near Enniskillen, there is certainly something to thrill everyone.

Londonderry will host four days of spooky family fun along the banks of the Foyle which ends with a huge fireworks display this Sunday evening.

The basement at the Richmond Centre in the city has become Nightmare Manor, a series of terrifying rooms which will be haunted by creepy characters from the McCafferty School of Drama.

Derry mayor Colum Eastwood described the event as “the Mardi Gras of the north west”.

He said: “The programme has evolved particularly in recent years to have a more family-focused appeal, with many visitors planning their mid-term break around the event and this year’s programme features something for everyone with a range of events that are sure to delight people young and old.”

Daily Headlines & Evening Telegraph Newsletter

Receive today's headlines directly to your inbox every morning and evening, with our free daily newsletter.

This field is required

A list of events happening in the city can be found on www.derrycity.gov.uk

Belfast is also gearing up for a number of great Halloween activities.

The main event is the Metro Monster Mash which takes place at the Odyssey from 2pm on Sunday.

The Metro Monster Mash promises to keep little monsters and grown-up ghouls entertained with street theatre, a carnival and live music during the day, culminating in a magical fireworks display in the evening.

Metro will be putting on free shuttle buses to the event from the city centre.

Elsewhere in Belfast ghosts and goblins are thought to be hiding under the hay at Streamvale Farm and a Teepee of Horror has been put up in the Falls Park.

The Ghostly Sea Shanty Ship has docked at Belfast Harbour and those brave enough to go on board will be enthralled by spine-tingling tales of strange goings-on and all that goes bump in the night.

And if that is not enough action for one weekend you can head along to the Stroke Association’s Halloween Howler Fun Run and Walk which kicks off in the Botanic Gardens on Saturday.

For information on hair-raising happenings in Belfast see www.belfastcity.gov.uk/events/halloween.asp

Across the province events to trick and treat have also been organised.

Budding detectives should go to Armagh where the public are being asked to solve a murder mystery which will take place tomorrow at 7.30pm.

Also being hosted in the city is a Sing-along-a-Rocky Horror Picture Show Halloween Special at St Patrick's Trian Visitor Complex.

Seven FM will be broadcasting from Ballymena’s bloodcurdling carnival this evening.

Events include a stilt-walking samba band, fire jugglers, a funfair and Halloween storytelling before a fireworks display at 8.30pm.

For more information on the brilliant and bizarre Halloween events happening across Northern Ireland visit: www.discovernorthernireland.com


Top Videos



Privacy