ALTHOUGH it’s felt like summer lately, the time has come to find a household or two where folks love Halloween like cats like milk and ducks love puddles.
I do it each year at Halloween to share how some people really get into the holiday.
Years ago, I got a call from a family in Spotsylvania County that went whole hog each Halloween, doing up their house and yard like a spooky Transylvania address.
So I featured it in a column, complete with great pictures taken by our photographers.
A funny thing happened the following year: A bunch of folks called and asked if they could be that year’s featured Halloween house.
And so it’s gone for the past dozen years or so, as I’ve sought out folks who go the extra mile to make their house a haunted Halloween stop.
Unlike the effort I mount at Christmas, when dozens and dozens of houses go onto my published list, at Halloween I can do only a house or two—which means to be featured in this spot at Halloween, a house or space has to be really trick-or-treated out.
The folks who’ve been featured typically have spent months getting their Halloween displays ready, turning hallways, front yards, barns, living rooms, backyards and even a YMCA space into something that can rival the holiday displays at King’s Dominion and Busch Gardens.
These folks have either scavenged, or by hand have made costumes, Halloween creatures, masks, graveyards, spiderwebs, cauldrons, skeletons, ghouls, electronically operated creatures and many a blood-saturated scene of terror.
If you’ve got that sort of commitment to the holiday and put together quite the special scene or scenes at your home, farm or building, I’d love to feature you the week before Halloween.
At best, I’ll only be able to feature a few displays, so don’t delay.
Shoot me an email at firstname.lastname@example.org if you’re interested in sharing your Halloween display with readers.
To help me choose, please attach to your email a picture or pictures from displays in other years. Of course, if your display for this year is finished and out already, you could simply attach a digital photo of that.
Please also include your name, your address and a brief description of your display for this Halloween.
I try to spread the choices around so different parts of our area are featured.
It’s getting close to scare time, so don’t dawdle.
For the homes chosen, I’ll hustle out pretty quickly so you can show me your display and explain how you got the Halloween scaring bug.
I’ve got goose bumps just thinking about it.
Years ago, I used to tease a fellow reporter in the newsroom about his uncanny knack for taking vacations on days and in places where there was extreme weather, ending droughts or drawing deep snowfalls simply by traveling to one place or another.
Well, I’m taking some time off next week, partly to get some work done around the house.
And while the long-range weather report has shown nothing but sunny days for weeks on end, rain clouds fill up the forecast for the coming week.
You’re welcome, farmers and backyard gardeners.
This from a guy who went to the river the last two times hurricanes arrived and to visit relatives in New Jersey when storms threatened there.
Guess it’s safe to say I’ve assumed the Bad Weather Bear mantle from my buddy.
I should just go ahead and take the week before Christmas off so we all can enjoy a proper holiday snowfall.
Rob Hedelt: 540/374-5415