Richmondites invited to find out what creatures crawl through Deas Island park at night

If you’ve ever wondered what goes bump in the night in our local parks, a fun, but slightly spooky, event awaits you just south of the Fraser River this Saturday, Oct. 19.

Metro Vancouver’s parks department – ably assisted by several Richmond organizations – is hosting the free “Flashlight Mysteries” in Deas Island Regional Park, just the other side of the Massey Tunnel.

Billed as being an “evening filled with puzzles and challenges,” the event is hoping to get teenagers away from the video games and adults out the house to learn about the park’s creatures, including the resident bat colony.

Celina Starnes, Metro Vancouver’s special events assistant, said Deas Island is home to all kinds of great wildlife.

“In Burvilla House’s attic (in the park) there is a large colony. The caretaker lives there also, but the two living areas are sealed off, so he doesn’t need to worry, there won’t be anyone waking up with a bat on their face,” laughed Starnes.

“The mysteries will take at least an hour and remember to bring a flashlight. We will have a one and a half-kilometre trail lit up with animal lanterns dotted along the trail, so you can solve the mysteries with the clues.

“The 25-year-old that comes along is going to have as much fun as the teenagers.”

Anyone aged 11 and under needs to be accompanied by an adult.

“You will get to listen to different bat calls before you head out as they will be part of the mysteries and clues on the trail,” added Starnes.

“And there may even be a challenge to eat the same bugs as the bats do at the end.

“We just want everyone to have fun and experience the park at night.”

On site will be The Bubble Tea Shop, as well as hot waffles, hot chocolate and coffee.

Richmond-based Time Escape created the puzzles, which were tested by the Richmond-based Tap Group (Tapestry Church).

Allow one and a half to two hours to complete and bring a flashlight. The challenges are designed for ages 12+.

Parking is limited, so carpooling is recommended. The event goes from 6:30 to 9:30 p.m., but you can drop by before 8 p.m.

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