Halloween is finally here, but unfortunately, in some parts of Canada, the weather is not ideal for trick-or-treating or partying. While dealing with rain and wind on Halloween night is bad enough, things could actually be a lot scarier. Halloween in Nunavut has an entirely different safety concern: polar bears.

In one Nunavut community, Arviat, the Halloween festivities will be continuing, but everything will be done indoors. Kids still get to wear their costumes, but they'll all head to the community hall and stay inside.

This has been the Halloween tradition in Arviat since 2014, when the growing presence of polar bears around the community of roughly 3,000 people became a safety issue.

In 2018, two men were killed by polar bears. One of these attacks took place right outside of Arviat. Like all other Nunavut communities, however, Arviat has a yearly quote for polar bear kills, and they are not supposed to go over it.

The time of day when kids would be going trick-or-treating is particularly dangerous, as nightfall is when polar bears are typically most active. They are also harder to spot in the dark.

Even though the community will mostly be staying inside, a few individuals will still be out on the streets of Arviat keeping any potential polar bear intruders at bay.

Arviat residents have spoken openly about the polar bear issue, and how the animals have started making their way further into the communities.

"These polar bears seem to have no fear at all in human activity," Brian Aglukark, an Arviat resident told CBC News in 2018. "We're just watching in the distance, afraid of these bears because they're free to do whatever they want."

Arviat is about 250 kilometres north of Churchill, Manitoba, which is known as the polar bear capital of Canada.

Meanwhile, in other parts of Canada, the biggest threat to Halloween is inclement weather. Parts of Ontario are facing rain, snow, and gusts of wind. It's gotten so bad that one Montreal community is actually postponing their Halloween until November 1.

Even though Environment Canada has issued a storm warning for Toronto, the city has said that it will not be postponing its Halloween celebrations.

As much as going trick-or-treating in the rain can be a bit of a bummer, just remember that some communities are dealing with problems that are far more dangerous.

Disclaimer: Cover photo on the left used for illustrative purposes only.


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