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Discussion Starter #1
I enjoy the planning and execution stages of my haunt as much as the 'reveal'.

How much do you plan in advance? Is it a months long process to plan and build or do you madly rush to finish the last week of October?

Share your process and current pics if you have some to show your progress to date. :)
 

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This is my 2nd year, and as much as I like creating I think I'm going to stick with 2 themes for the time being and alternate every year with upgrades for each theme each year. I think when you have a lot of themes and fantastic ideas- storage becomes a bit of an issue unless you can repurpose items. SInce my themes are pretty unrelated (last year was Star Wars graveyard with Jawas and Kylo Ren scarecrow and this year is Sleepy Hollow/Hocus Pocus) I have to think about storage space but also allows my creativity to go full force because I'm essentially starting from scratch. I've been planning since January what my theme will be this year and working on projects intermittently throughout the year. Last year I had the post summer Halloween rush of trying to get everything together and it made the holiday more daunting and not as fun. This year I have been able to do most of my projects before the end of summer, just waiting on a few things to buy that only come in stores around the holiday. I should be able to set up at the beginning of October and kickback and watch movies, Stranger Things and eat ungodly amounts of candy.
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Good thread to start. I hope more of our haunters post to it. I know years ago, when I was younger, a lot younger, I'd would actually sit down several days after Halloween and go over what went right and what went wrong with the last one. I felt that "executing" the haunt was so very important to make sure each TOT'er got their 'bang',or should I say 'scare' from my cemetery. Each year I tweaked it so no one knew what was going to happen or what they were in for, even my wife. I never told her that I had something new that had been made in the garage. I put it out at the last second just to make sure I could scare her, and it was worth it.
Now, today, and at my age, I've built enough to move all the props around so the effect I want is maximized and everyone who comes by always asks, "is that new ?" I just say 'nope, it was here last year'. But again this is just a cemetery and there is just so much front yard to be utilized so, to me, it is easy to plan. Those, which sounds like yourself, have a lot of, what they say, moving pieces. Planning a head is vital to what you're doing so the more time you have ahead of Halloween is very important. Don't feel rushed just know what your final haunt is going to look like and just do it. DSC09588.jpg
 

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They call me HeebieJeebie
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I do my cemetery every year. I have a bus-load of skeletons, so I change up what they're doing each year to keep things interesting. I keep a notebook with me during ToT (and most always) and jot down ideas as they happen, then start planning more in spring. In fact I bought my Home Depot horse skeleton in April as soon as I saw them in stock. So this year is centered around that. But I changed my mind about what I wanted to do with the horse and now I'm leaning in a different direction. So ideas are fluid.

There's very little I actually BUILD so I don't have to worry about that. Maybe little things here & there, but that's it. Planning & acquiring take up most of my time, then set up will begin the last weekend in September.

1/2 the cemetery.....
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I've got a fairly full graveyard, and I add stones (doing the Disney Haunted Mansion replicas) every year.
Last year I did a photo op in the front yard and it was a massive hit! Made a Throne of Bones with a black light sign in front of the grave yard and it drew TONS of people. It's getting a makeover and a fresh coat of paint (plus sealant) next week.

I love watching the ToTs enjoy themselves and interact with the photo op, so I'm adding another couple of "face through the hole" places.


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Discussion Starter #8
I've got a fairly full graveyard, and I add stones (doing the Disney Haunted Mansion replicas) every year.
Last year I did a photo op in the front yard and it was a massive hit! Made a Throne of Bones with a black light sign in front of the grave yard and it drew TONS of people. It's getting a makeover and a fresh coat of paint (plus sealant) next week.

I love watching the ToTs enjoy themselves and interact with the photo op, so I'm adding another couple of "face through the hole" places.


Love it! The photo op idea is great. I used during my Wicked West theme when my golden retriever was the sheriff. The kids loved getting their pics taken with him in his sheriff get up. :)
 

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They call me HeebieJeebie
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Love it! The photo op idea is great. I used during my Wicked West theme when my golden retriever was the sheriff. The kids loved getting their pics taken with him in his sheriff get up. :)
That's awesome! He's so cute! My Beagle would freak out! I tried keeping him out with me during ToT one year, wearing a reflective vest that I'd embroidered with "candy inspector", but he really doesn't like strangers approaching me and the costumes didn't help. So he stays in the house and gets to come out at the end.
 
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