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Friday, December 8, 2023
Halloween photo gallery: Virgil family decks the halls with bones and bodies
After moving to Canada from Cuba where Halloween celebrations were illegal growing up, Miguel Pumariega makes sure to go all out for the holiday. JULIA SACCO
Miguel Pumariega, wife Shanna and his two sons Miguelito and Diego are proud of their house that haunts Annmarie Drive in Virgil. Featuring a collection of animatronics, Miguel starts decorating in early September. JULIA SACCO
Three-year-old Jack Ewanyna took a break from candy with Baileigh Peacock during Sunday's Trunk or Treat. JULIA SACCO
Keith and one-and-a-half year old Milo Kyer snacked on some candy at Central's Trunk or Treat. JULIA SACCO
Janaye Wall, Emily Wall and Amanda Lewis sang their hearts out in their group Mamma Mia costume during Trunk or Treat on Sunday. JULIA SACCO
James and Emily Grabatin brought Minecraft to life with blocks and creepers during Trunk or Treat. JULIA SACCO
Cristina and Charayah Romo brought out some vintage style to Trunk or Treat at Central on Sunday. JULIA SACCO
Cowgirls Mia Unruh and Norah Palmer happily galloped along the parade route, followed by Lulu Du in her festive cat costume. JULIA SACCO
Lev Bednenko showed up to the parade with a green friend on Tuesday. JULIA SACCO
Things 1 and 2 ,Addison Mayer and Brooke Janzen led Po, Abby Fromstein throughout Tuesday's parade at Crossroads. JULIA SACCO
Stefanyie Hamilton with her daughters four-year-old Shayah, dressed as a cheetah, and seven-year-old Niyah, dressed as one of the Na'Vi from Avatar. EVAN LOREE
Meet the Lynchs, who chose to dress as a family for Halloween this year. From left, son Austin, mom Shannon, daughter Penelope and dad Brian. The family are dressed as an alien invasion. EVAN LOREE
Ivey Smith, middle, with her daughter Rosie Smith at the Niagara Regional Native Centre's annual Halloween party. Rosie chose to dress as Harley Quinn this year. EVAN LOREE
Charlie Windsor keeps his pale open for candy as he hops from trunk to trunk for the Niagara Regional Native Centre's annual Halloween party. EVAN LOREE
Willowbank's entrance beckons Monster Bash goers, if they dare. Dave Van de Laar
The Willowbank School of Restoration Arts, likely as you've never seen it before, all decked out for the Monster Bash Halloween Party. DAVE VAN DE LAAR
Pope Joe Wery and nun Susan Wery. DAVE VAN DE LAAR
Maria Fratangelo, Moe Bjorgan, Steffani Bjorgan (founder of Red Roof) and Owen Bjorgan. DAVE VAN DE LAAR
Life's a beach for Carol Perrin, Phil Loforti and Anne Robinson at the Monster Bash at Willowbank. DAVE VAN DE LAAR
If you’ve watched the “Yellowstone” TV series starring Kevin Costner you’ll recognize Rob MacInnis’ character. DAVE VAN DE LAAR
For the Monster Bash party at Willowbank Saturday night, hosts Perry and Shari Hartwick had elaborate costumes. The bash was all in aid of Red Roof Retreat. DAVE VAN DE LAAR
Is that Gene Simmons of Kiss and ... ? Well, almost. It’s Barb Dutchyn and Dan Lantagne all decked out for the occasion. DAVE VAN DE LAAR

After moving to Canada in 2012, Miguel Pumariega decided he would celebrate Halloween to the fullest to make up for lost time.

Pumariega grew up in Cuba, where Halloween celebrations used to be highly discouraged — and could even land you in jail. 

“When I grew up, if you had any (decorations) you would go to jail. Anything that had to do with North American traditions, you go to jail,” Pumariega told The Lake Report.

He noted the situation has relaxed in Cuba in recent years.

Now, Pumegiera’s neighbours — and anyone who passes by his family’s home on Annmarie Drive in Virgil — can see how he has made up for lost Halloweens.

His front lawn alone tells the tale.

Boasting a collection of animatronics and decorations amassed over the past 10 years, the Pumariega residence is one of the main attractions of the Halloween season in Niagara-on-the-Lake.

He starts putting up his largest decorations in early September and doesn’t finish tying it all together until the night before Halloween itself.

“We moved (to Niagara-on-the-Lake) three years ago and every year I’ve been adding more and more,” he said Monday night.

The decorations, which he sources from Home Depot, Costco, Spirit Halloween and other retailers, are just as much for his two young sons as they are for him. 

“My kids love it. One of my sons is autistic and I thought this would help him to have more contact with other kids,” said Pumariega, who was dresses as a NASA astronaut.

In other instances, it may be hard for six-year-old Miguelito to connect with his peers, but at Halloween, all of his classmates recognize him for having the coolest house on the block.

“Last year I had about 250 (kids). I know this year for sure we reached 300,” Pumariega said on Halloween night. 

To manage the amount of candy he hands out, Pumriega says he begins shelling out at 7 p.m. and until then, neighbours can enjoy the show of lights and sounds. 

“I really enjoy seeing everyone’s smiling faces, even from the parents,” he said. 

Pumeriega said he will be decorating the family’s Annmarie Drive property again for the Christmas season, but it won’t be quite the same scale as Halloween was.


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