Well, it has been one hell of a month leading up to our favorite holiday. Our annual haunted trail, the 100K attempt, the prediction race at a local cemetery a few nights ago and the rather sad news covered in the last post. Through all the ups and downs we finally made it and can now relax and enjoy a day devoted to all things that go bump in the night….and day…
My haunted trail reaper had a growth spurt this year – decided to add over 3 feet to increase the scare factor. Although not shown, the son of Nyx has an animated lantern and thanks to a flea market find earlier in the year, now has a real scythe. Then there is the flaming pumpkin tradition. Nothing sets the mood for horror night better than 3 feet of flames spewing out the top of an evil Jack-o-Lantern.
Some like to look at clouds and let their imagination flow…me, I prefer flames. The shot above is one of my favorites from this year’s haunted trail – like a Rorschach test for the inner demon, everyone sees something different. I personally see the face of the devil hiding behind an upside down cross. Might be therapy in my future..although this was a bit ominous.
One of the tombstones that immediately caught my attention in the Sturtevant Haunted Farm cemetery (has my initials). It just occurred to me I have yet to introduce you to one of the creepiest haunts in all of Illinois. If you are not faint of heart, hit the jump for a quick look at some of the scenes awaiting you at that location.
Have a Happy Halloween everyone – let your spook flag fly high!
As promised, hit the jump to see some shots from this year’s visit to Sturtevant Haunted Farm in Walnut, IL
Warning, not responsible for any nightmares these scenes may manifest. This haunt is out in the middle of nowhere and the three times we’ve been there, we’ve essentially been the only ones there (a few people showed up while we were there this year, but they left pretty quickly … can’t imagine why hehehe).
This is a “static” haunt in that there are no actors, no animations, and no predefined path – in fact, it is completely quiet beyond the standard country sounds (coyotes were howling from the surroundings fields that night). The majority of the props are dressed figures in various poses/scenes. Not just one or two figures or scenes..hundreds of them scattered about the farm. Yes, that is a Vulture feeding from the top of a decapitated body.
The creators of this haunt are incredibly creative. Even their side decorations are clever – I am stealing the idea of putting skeletons on birds for next year’s haunted trail. Guessing the storage needed just for all the clothes and accessories exceeds the racks of tubs needed for our decorations.
They even had formal clothes for this couple…it was a bit chilly out that night.
It is a bit startling at first to see all the “child” sized skeletons and ghouls they have there…not to mention “babies”.
Their scenes are quite elaborate and their attention to little details is what gives this place all of its charm..in a demented and scary perspective. Yes, that’s a head in the fishing net in front of the boat.
They will take every day, normal situations and convert them to 3D vacation scrapbooks for the dead. Forget S’mores, they have S’hands.
“The smell of death is all around, and the night when the cold wind blow, no one cares, nobody knows, I don’t want to be buried in a pet sematary.”
This next scene cracked me up – a roadside diner with the latest “roadkill” delicacies.
Been wanting to have an evil plant display included in our haunt for years. Was thinking more along the lines of “feed me Seymour”, but “baby”catchers might work as well.
It wasn’t the hanging body that freaked me out as much as the giant flies crawling on the hanging corpse.
They have a large area devoted to all things medical related. When it comes to horror, this is the area that makes my skin crawl the most.
Try as I might, like a car crash, just can’t look away.
Did I mention they have prop after prop devoted to the white coat world.
Just out for a walk… wait a minute, you forgot your shoes!
Laughed out loud when I spotted this next prop – the werewolf is wearing the “cone of shame”.
Normally DCFS frowns on putting your kids in chains..but in this case I think it might be acceptable.
Nothing to see here, just heading to the bus station…oh that, well the grass is pretty uneven here and didn’t want to “lose my footing” (thank you, thank you, here all week).
They have a huge cemetery. Every year I try to add new stones to our haunted trail – have a long ways to go to get to this level.
Complete with bouncers!
The area past the cemetery is what I call the killing fields.
Feel sorry for all the ladies that have found themselves in such horrific situations. Salem witch trials come to Illinois.
“You go along, I’ll just hang around here and watch the corn brown.”
Ummm.. yeah, I’m not going to touch this next one.
As shocking as it sounds, my first impression was a lot worse than what it actually turned out to be. They are “just” catapulting this lady to the other side of the farm.
Was it the first Friday the 13th that had the bow and arrow scene?
By Salem standards…apparently not a witch.
They also have a real casket you can take selfies in. I did it last year, opted out of it for this year due to everything that was going on at the time. Tried to get my friend in haunt Paul to get in, but he was too freaked out by it – we did at least get him to pose by it.
They added a real hearse for this year.
Complete with passengers!
I recommend passing if they ask you if you like to go bowling… you might find yourself getting immersed in the game… just saying.
Apparently in some medical situations, they must remove the head, put it in a microwave and …well, hopefully reattach it. Not entirely sure this procedure is officially endorsed by the medical community.
Eventually you come to the more domestic part of the haunt. They have a cosmetology section.
..their own house band (a Grateful Dead cover band).
…a fresh ingredients store.
…even a tattoo shop. Sure hope the artist has a steady hand… or rather at least a hand.
Hey waiter, what do you have for a splitting headache? May I recommend a corkscrew to the top of the skull?
Mentioned it before, the scenes with the kids are just plain creepy – an entire playground of the living dead.. a whole new level.
Bring your ghoul to work day.
And now the creepiest prop in the entire haunt. I don’t know if this is for children, people decapitated at the waist or former contortionists, but this coffin gives me the heebie jeebies. It is finished flush at the far end, so that is the full size. Only thing I can think of is used for a wake and there is a missing cover piece for the head. Thank you, I’ll be leaving now.
There are plenty of other scenes I didn’t bother to include all with the same type of feel. Ghouls and monsters acting out everyday scenes with a macabre twist. If they were to add real actors in the midst I’d probably end up needing another pair of pants for the drive home. Having all those props in the periphery starts playing games in your head .. did that just move, tell me that arm didn’t raise, holy crap, that head turned, I know it did…
If you get a chance and enjoy a good haunt, I highly recommend this display in Walnut, IL. One of a kind from truly imaginative minds… demented.. but very creative.
Stay calm, haunt on!