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Caretaker of Eerie Manor
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Short version; Halloween has always been my favorite holiday, bar none. My memories of Halloween growing up are among the best, and while no one decorated to extremes like they do now, Halloween and trick or treat seemed more widely accepted back then. I think any of us who "haunt" or go to some length to celebrate above and beyond, are doing a great deal to preserve the tradition of a holiday that seems to become less and less popular as the years go by. I want to create lasting memories for people who come to my house on Halloween night. I want to be the guy the kids talk about the next day in school, and the one parents tell their friends about. Someday, long after I'm done doing Halloween, I want those little kids who are grown up to tell their own little kids about the Halloween house they remember. Hopefully our efforts can inspire the next generation to not only go the extra mile on Halloween but to keep the holiday viable and popular.
That, and I can ogle hot chicks from behind my mask!
 

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The Halloween King
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jdubbya said it pretty well.

The memories i had as a kid, the wanting to share the passion i have in others and hopefully help others understand how great this time of year can be, and that certain sense of magic in the air on the day itself, like anything could happen.
 

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My reasons are complicated and simple at the same time.

I've always enjoyed Halloween and the more macabre side of life. After buying my first house I did some basic but growing decorations, and had the "scary" house on the block for a couple of years. Nothing like the stuff from this forum, just a small tarp maze ending in me as a grim reaper handing out candy. A fog machine and some purple rope lights were the extent of my decorations.

Then in 2000, just a week before Halloween, my mom died. That Halloween I hadn't planned on doing anything. But at the last possible minute, as the sun was setting on Halloween I got motivated and put up a bit of decorations and the maze again. It was a light TOT year, and we ended up with the same people going through it over and over again. The parents loved it, and as the older kids returned home the parents would bring them to the house to have me scare the crap out of them. A few neighbors knew of my loss and the word spread so in the middle of the celebration I got an outpouring of love and support from people I didn't know who where there only because of my "haunt."

That started the craziness. Suddenly I couldn't not do it. So I haunt out of remembrance to my Mom, because it makes me remember her fondly thanks to the kindness on that first Halloween after her death. And I do it because it makes people happy and they expect it.

I've since moved from that neighborhood into one where there is no TOTs because of the hills and the older inhabitants. So my haunt has gone "portable." (Portable meaning less than 10 double carloads) I set up two times in October, once at a Trunk or Treat at my church and once on Halloween night at a friend or relative's house. (Depending on who offers the best chance of visitors and finger foods for the actors) This year I'm setting up three times, adding Nov 1st as another date for the city's haunted nature trail.

So my Haunting is very deeply tied to emotions and the return I get out of it. It just means a lot to me on so many levels.
 

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Mistress of Darkness
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I've always loved Halloween for the costumes and parties but started doing a home haunt after we moved to the Bible Belt. The bible beaters hate Halloween and it's my own personal little way of saying, "BITE ME!"
 

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lies dead but dreaming
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952 Posts
I have always had an affinity for the darker side of life (or so my friends tell me) But that is year round, Halloween is my favorite basically because it was the most reliable holiday I had growing up. Being an Army Brat we moved from place to place Christmas might be with relatives in Oklahoma one year and barely anything at a brand new station the next. Thanksgiving got really weird when we were over seas in base housing and we did big pot luck feast, but Halloween! It was always there, there was always time to at least throw a bed sheet ghost costume together and hit the neighbor hood streets!

Weather it was Base housing buildings in Germany or the streets of Coppers Cove Halloween was my holiday constant. Sure I do it for the TOT's and the compliments I get from the neighbors are great, but the real reason I Haunt my yard is preserving something of my child hood memories and passing it on to my own kids.
 

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Join my Doomsday cult!
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I do it so my neighbors are used to seeing me working on props.
Now they don't even bat an eye when they see me taking a body apart in the garage.



I loved Halloween as a kid, and I really hate how people are trying to destroy the holiday with things like "safe" trunk or treats. So, I try to combat the "anti-Halloweeners" by giving the kids a reason to have a traditional evening of fun and scares.
Prop building has become my favorite creative outlet.

Or I'm just obsessed with death...
 

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LOL... The bible belt comment reminded me of something hilarious.

The first year I lived in this area, I had an apartment. So, I set up my haunt at my sister's. The neighbours are *serious* bible-thumpers and were peeking out the window at us the entire time we were setting up the graveyard... Getting all flustered and freaked out.

When darkness fell, they put a big sign on their door that said 'Jesus Loves You!' and handed out bible tracts instead of candy. This little boy dressed as SpongeBob, took a loooong look at the sign and then said to the neighbour, 'Um, yeah, Mister? Jesus is not scary!' LOL
Then he came to our house, peeked back at the neighbours and whispered to his dad (amongst the corpses and monsters), 'I think those people are crazy!'

A couple of months later, they gave my sister a HUGE bible for Christmas. I begged her to let me stage a fake gay wedding this summer, but she wouldn't bite. Too funny.
 

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A couple of months later, they gave my sister a HUGE bible for Christmas. I begged her to let me stage a fake gay wedding this summer, but she wouldn't bite. Too funny.
You should take that bible and incorporate it into a tombstone. I'll try to dig up a picture I have of what I'm thinking about. Its a common theme for older tombstones here in the bible belt, so it is something they've probably seen in cemeteries already.

Then thank them profusely for the perfect prop addition and how thoughtful it was that they gave it to you for that purpose. That it really "finishes out" the cemetery and gives it a more authentic feel.
 

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I am a Christian, read the Bible, attend church regularly. I have nothing against Halloween. Just an innocent night of fun.

I do it for the same reason I collect baseball cards. Because its fun and a good way to nurture my nerdy inner child.
 

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Honestly, I do it for the kids (and some adults who enjoy it as much, sometimes even more than their kids). Every year during the month of October, while I am pondering over what needs to be done next or running into some prop that does not work or does not look right I say to myself "why do I do this each and every year, THIS IS GOING TO BE MY LAST" and then...

and then.....

Comes Halloween and there are hundreds of kids and adults running around the house, go back for a second and third look, and asking me questions about my Haunt. I then wish that Halloween lasted for another day, so that everyone can come back.

I think we all enjoy decoration and (trying) to be creative each year, but it is hard work. Maybe it is the satisfaction of seeing our displays or it brings us back to a time when it was fun to be a kid, regardless, for one night I get to share in the enjoyment that others take home with themselves after leaving.
 

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Instead of the question why we haunt, I'm going to say why I decorate the indoors a lot. I have some decorations though that could go outside, but I just don't just theifs, and prankers for putting it outside.

Anyway, I think it's just the fact that I really enjoy it. It's a time of year (holiday) that's really different than the ordinary. I think Christmas is another holiday for me like that, so I really get into it. Those are the two holidays I really get into. For me, the easter bunny takes to much credit for that holiday for me to get really into it. What can you do for Valentines day, or Columbus day?
 

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I'll get you my pretty!
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550 Posts
when i was young the kids around here would come around - we called it 'guising' & taking in the 'gloshies' - we were never allowed to dress up & take part & i always wanted to. yet when we went to my grandfathers he always made toffee apples to give to the kids who came round. costumes were either an old sheet, wearing your fathers work clothes or wearing a long nightgown with a candle as wee willie winkie.

as i got older i got more drawn to it - then I fell into wicca - where i am now. Halloween was originated in scotland & ireland as a pagan festival - it's the pagan new year. so I love it for both of those reasons and more.

it doesn't matter to me why people love it - as long as they do & keep it going for the next generation & after that! :)
 
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