Located on Cumberland Street, south of Bay Street, in Toronto, Bay Station is frequented by hundreds, if not thousands, of TTC riders every day.
As you go down the escalator, past the collector’s booth, a set of metal double-doors guard a discreet lower platform full of underground horrors.
Open for just six monthly only in 1966, Lower Bay Station has become a coveted destination where the public is not usually allowed.
Except, this Halloween weekend, patrons — and screams — will once again be welcome.
“This weekend is Halloween Fest. It’s our signature United Way fundraising event,” said TTC spokesperson Hayley Waldman.
Back for a second year after a “screaming” success in 2022, the TTC Halloween Fest transforms a subway platform into a haunted experience, full of tricks and treats.
“When you’re down here, definitely expect spooky,” said Waldman.
Patrons can choose to enter a daunting subway car and interact with live actors, or opt for the lighter-hearted version geared at smaller children.
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A trivia-like station will feature movie posters of films that have been shot at the abandoned platform.
You may also scour the area looking for a glimpse of the Lady in Red, the rumoured Lower Bay station ghost.
Otherwise, you can head on upstairs where a garage sale and TTC merchandise will be sold, with proceeds also going towards the cause.
In 2022, the event drew 5,500 attendees, raising $20,000.
The money went towards supporting United Way Greater Toronto’s 300 member agencies, which tackle 13 service areas like food insecurity, mental wellness, and homelessness.
According to the organization’s 2022-2023 annual report, such funds helped keep 20,000 people housed, and provided 46,000 individuals with tools and resources to manage mental health and substance use.
“This year, we’re hoping to do even better, with a goal of $800,000 for United Way’s entire season, so hopefully this TTC event can contribute to that,” said Waldman.
Entry is five dollars per child. Children under 2 can get in for free.
The event runs Saturday 9 a.m. to 7 p.m. and Sunday 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.
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