Halloween Forum banner

1 - 20 of 43 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
232 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
Well I have not seen anything like this posted here, and I know I can not be the only one on the site who has had the displeasure of having there Halloween props vandalized. It happened to me twice this last year, and sadly I never caught them……..well not to sad because I am not sure what I would do to them if I did catch them, might be in jail! Lol
Anyhow I was wondering how many have had this problem and what you have done to stop it and protect your pricey and time consuming props
 

·
Horror off the Highway
Joined
·
1,795 Posts
Unfortunately because I trust NO ONE I usually set up on Halloween and tear it down that night. Plus my hubby always walks around that night to make sure there are no sticky little fingers.

We even bring in our pumpkins! Shows how much today's youth respects other people's property!:mad:
 

·
Lord of the Cemetery
Joined
·
2,081 Posts
Yeah..it's a problem here in the UK too. Some people either don't know or don't care how much time and money is invested in these things or that their stupid antics spoil the enjoyment of many others.
Like MOTA, I daren't set up anything until the day, as the chances are it will be gone or vandalised if left overnight. Halloween day normally sees me taking a day off work and an early start to get everything set up ready for the first lot of TOT's who can arrive as early as 4.30pm. In addition, everything has to be taken down that night and moved back under cover (can't even trust the weather here...) In the past I have had static props vandalised, pumpkins smashed and small props such as skulls and candlesticks stolen, as well as catching one individual doing something very unhygenic in the apple bobbing tub.
Since I now enlist the help of my 18 year old sons friends as actors in my haunt (scary enough, even without make up) they also double up as security guards and now nothing but nothing is left unattended even for a second.
You can't fully stop it. unfortunately there will always be those people (not always kids either) who will be of the mindset that they can do what they like with or to other peoples property. All you can do is try to be vigilant and reduce the opportunity for a vandal attack.
 

·
Blaberus craniifer
Joined
·
4,920 Posts
Mr. Frost I to have felt the pain of vandals. The worst part is most of the time it occurs while I'm at home. :mad: I have several security cameras, but they're only good if I watching at the time. I do plan on adding a DVR system to record the cameras, but most security cameras do not give you an image clear enough to identify anyone. Since most of the time it occurs at night while I'm and home, I'm thinking of adding a few Dakota Alert MURS around the perimeter of the yard and tying them into my alarm panel to notify me of someone entering the yard. I figure if I can catch one, I can drag them to the nearest clothing drop off, have them strip to their undies and deposit their clothing for the needy, then send them on their way home..... ID's I would drop off at the police department.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
7,208 Posts
Vandal-proofing takes time

Most of my outdoor items are made of steel. Welded, bolted together they seem to be fist-proof.
I am located right behind 4 taverns so most of my problems are alcohol inspired when it comes to people messing with things and they tend to be in adult-sized bodies .
Video cameras watching them instills more civilized behavior in most of them.
I am open year-round but the "Stupid-Season" is late Sept. and all of October.
I really do believe that some of the potentially vandalistic types who arrive here from many hours away feel a new fear of things unknown in the possible form of the small-town Policeman and his jail.
All I have to do is tell the Police to "Take them away" and they are gone! (Insert evil laugh here~)
I have gotten a Police response here in as little as ten seconds. Maybe some drunks hear the truthfullness in this claim as I warn them?
Maybe it's a little of the "Barney Fife" syndrome? He might have only had one bullet for his gun, but one nervous unintentional shot can still kill or maim.

Install some motion detector lights for the outdoors displays , maybe another one to turn on a talking "chip" device.
 

·
Insert Witty Comment Here
Joined
·
4,484 Posts
I haven't had problems but I usually wait to the last week to drag out the good stuff, and I don't leave the electronics outside. I live in a cul-de-sac, so unless people go out of their way, I figure most people wont see things until Halloween Night, then I just take down everything and shove it in the garage after the last TOT..

I'm thinking of using the backyard and garage this year so I can set things up earlier and not worry about vandals.

I'm also thinking of adding motion detectors too.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
232 Posts
Discussion Starter #8
The past few years I have done the same LadyAlthea, but this year sadly it did not work out so well. some of my nicer props were taken and the thing that pisses me off the most is that they came on to my front porch. my yard it one thing but for someone to go on to ones porch and steal! at you can see I'm still a little PO'ed about it. lol motion detectors was another thought for the next year, but i might just put out the tombstones and little things till Halloween. i have also thought about using my garage but its in the back yard, not sure if anyone would go back there on Halloween. does anyone else have this problem? not sure i have the extra $$$$ for cameras Pod, but sounds like a good idea. better than sleeping outside with a baseball bat "winks"
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,024 Posts
That's why I only do a halloween party one night and most of it is inside....I don't think people that vandal and steal have an understanding of the passion or hard work that goes into this....As I get older, I just don't have as much faith in the human race as a whole....Sure, there's still a majority of good people and I'm blessed to be surrounded in that but there is just so much craziness anymore....It's sad but you just can't trust anyone anymore and that's the approach I take....When our party is over - the few props that are outside get set inside and the doors are shut and locked....ZR
 

·
Lord of the Cemetery
Joined
·
2,081 Posts
Unfortunately, one can expect little sympathy from the police. Their attitude seems to be "If you left it outside, what do you expect?". Unlike Gym, I could not hope for a police response within 10 seconds if my life depended on it...maybe if somebody reported me for having a stoplight out, or an out of date road tax disc I may stand an outside chance. :rolleyes:

A neighbour down the street puts a big Christmas light display outside his property. A couple of years ago vandals came on to his property and cut through the cables. As a response he put up a sign in the front garden calling their parentage and IQ's into question.
A visit from the local constabulary followed shortly after, in which he was ordered to remove the sign as it "could be offensive". :confused:

Hey ho...
 

·
Lord of the Cemetery
Joined
·
2,081 Posts
Oooh... I've just realised I've been promoted to Zombie.:D:D:D
 

·
AntiChrist Superstar
Joined
·
1,418 Posts
Congrats Baron, bad news, the pay is the same. As for Vandals, make your presence known with the hoodlums. If they think your cool they wont mess with your stuff. Thats what I do.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
174 Posts
I actually set my stuff up in a fenced in back yard. Then make a light path to it Halloween night. Then the just do a walk through. It takes me a while to set up( a month) . The judges let go, the ones that get caught. The police really don't have the time or motivation to do anything, unless it's happen at their house. But I have never had any trouble. Which everyone knows me, and where I live if they got caught. They would just disappear.Some of the folks around here are still old school. Nobody misses those kind of people. As for security lights, It dose help them to see what they are getting. Kind of the car alarm effect. Everyone who hears it just wishes it would shut up. I am sorry for your loss. Hope you have better luck next year.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
202 Posts
This subject has been talked about on here before, these are the reason I will never have a yard haunt, mine is my basement and its up year round, I can go downstairs anytime and see my haunt.....christmas,easter,thanksgiving is a good time after everyone eats we go down to The Morbituary and hang out .
 

·
Lord of the Cemetery
Joined
·
2,081 Posts
Congrats Baron, bad news, the pay is the same. As for Vandals, make your presence known with the hoodlums. If they think your cool they wont mess with your stuff. Thats what I do.
Shame about the pay..guess I'll have to put that new Volvo Hearse on hold for another few weeks.:(
Actually what you say does make sense, and it is something I do try to put into practice. I'm cool with most of the older teenagers in the neighbourhood, as most of them are around my son's age and know us. However it only takes one daft bugger who's had too much to drink and thinks it's a laugh.
Perhaps I'm making it sound worse than it really is, as I've only had a few little odds and sods pinched, but it's still annoying when it happens.

Wish I could have caught the little sod that p*ssed in the apple bobbing tub though...had big plans for him....(cue evil chuckle).
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
725 Posts
Back when I was on our high school swim team we had a tradition of stealing Christmas lights from peoples yards to decorate our varsity room. By late December we had one heck of a display and probably a fire hazard as well. It was just one of those stupid secret rituals that gave you credit amongst your peers.

So being on the other side, I can say that when it comes to teenagers there is no stereotype of the typical vandal. All teenagers have the potential to do stupid things. I dont even think you can say boys are worse than girls. In fact, last year, I walked around the corner to see a 15 year old girl moving in to take one of my strobe lights, just to impress her boyfriend.

In short I dont put out alot of my good props until the work week before halloween. I figure if its a school night its rather unlikely that I will have problems. It has worked so far. Beyond that I also tear down quickly after halloween. I think its great that some of you can justify the cost of a security system, but I got a hunch that alot of us with just simple yard haunts couldnt do the same. At least in my mind, I would rather spend that on latex and paint.

the_morbituary -- Do you have pictures of your basement haunt? Would love to see it.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
7,208 Posts
As a group was leaving my haunt I was standing behind them. A teenager stopped, pulled out a black magic-marker and began writing his name on the wall above his head!
(This is a wall inside my house, a real house wall not a temp. wall or anything like one)
I came up behind him and loudly asked why he was writing on my wall?
He looked right at me and denied writing on my wall!!!??
The marker was in his hand, in his grip point against the wall and it was moving and marking, yet he didn't do it!???
Just the two of us were left in the room.
No evil twin confusion here. Amazing.
I had a spot for them to leave some graphettii but it was about 12 feet away around two 180 turns and of course was very obviously a place where this was allowed to take place.
That area is not usually commonly used by the general public now so the "General" replaced that tradition by creating a "Gum Wall" in the basement, very colorfull!
A personal decoration telling the world they were here.
Only a few days of the year does the humidity and temperature combine to ellict a sickeningly sweet "Gum" smell from their deposits. It can't be noticed from any great distance.
The human tooth stuck in the one piece of gum grosses people out.
"Free Ravens Grin Inn GUM! It's Sugar-Free Now!"

Maybe an outdoor" Mr. Potato Head" type lifesized display would cater to those urges of self-expression some vandals fall victim to?
It might even be fun!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
268 Posts
When we ran a yard haunt, we put stuff out the morning of and took it down that night. EVERYTHING. It sucked that we couldn't leave it up longer - yeah, put 3 weeks into a project only to show it for 1 day - but otherwise, it would be trashed or gone.

We ran our first haunted house last year and it was vandalized too. We're hiring security this year.

Stacy
 

·
Hauntingly Addicting
Joined
·
6,068 Posts
When I use to have inflatables one year someone put slits in them. My mother came over and asked what happened when I told her she took them home, took the lights out, sewed them back up, put the lights back in and they were up and going for that Halloween. ( GO NANA!) Since then I havent had any problems. I dont have inflatables anymore, the kids are older, but I was glad they were up again at the time and Im sure whoever did it saw and I would have loved to see their faces trying to figure out how they were up and going:) Either way every Halloween after all the TOT come over I bring most of my stuff in. The expensive items anyway. This way I dont have to worry about losing anything that cost me a lot. In all my years of decorating though the inflatable incident was the only time I ever experienced any problems.
 
1 - 20 of 43 Posts
Top