Halloween is just around the corner and soon the streets will be filled with costumed kids in search of candy and snacks. Well, instead of just greeting trick or treaters at the front door this year why not give them a more immersive experience with your very own Haunted Garage. Here’s a few ideas on setting up your very own haunted garage:
Clean and Organize
The first step of creating your haunted environment is going to be cleaning and organizing. Remove any clutter or potentially dangerous items like sharp objects or flammable liquids. Check for spots of oil or other things that may cause someone to slip. Tape down any cords or wires that someone could trip on. Hang sheets in front of shelves to hide them from view and secure anything that could be easily knocked over.
A Haunted Floor Plan
Any good haunted house is divided into sections that each provide their own special scare. Make your entrance and exit areas obvious. Put a special haunt in each section like an escaped madman, hanging skeleton, or pop-up ghost. Use something structurally sound like thick cardboard to divide the sections. It’s also fun to create tubes or crawl ways from boxes to get from room to room. Bear in mind the ages of children in your neighborhood as you won’t want to make it too scary for young children.
Props and Decorations
Here’s where you get to be really creative. Your local Halloween store will have more than enough props and decorations to give you ideas on your haunted design. Don’t forget to use subtle areas of your garage like a tall, barely-lit scary figure in the corner of the room or rubber spiders hanging from strings that you catch out of the corner of your eye. Dry ice or fog machines are create ways to add scary ambiance to your garage but make sure it’s well ventilated or makes it too hard to see. Avoid props that can be easily knocked over or damaged. It’s hard to predict how a scared kids may react.
Scary Lights and Sound
No haunted house (or garage) is complete without it’s own soundtrack of scary music, moaning ghosts and howling werewolves. There are plenty of sound effect websites to help you create one. Use different lighting to enhance the experience like strobe lights or black lights. You can also use lights to cast creepy shadows on the wall. But also remember darkness is great way to fire kids imagination so use that to your advantage.
The approach to your haunted garage should be just as spooky. Consider making a theme for your haunted garage such as a haunted castle or insane asylum. Decorate the path to the entrance with gravestones, zombies crawling out of the ground, and plenty of spider webs. A story line that you tell kids before entering can help create the mood such as a wild animal is loose and in the garage, or an escaped madman is living there. Again, keep ages in mind.
It’s usually not hard to conjure up a few friends to participate in your haunted house. Teenagers that are just a little too old to trick our treat may be willing to join in the fun (which also keeps them busy from creating their own mischief.)
While a haunted garage is a great way to make your house the most popular spot on the block, remember Halloween is all about having fun and being safe. And remember, there should be a sufficient reward for surviving the haunted garage when kids exit!