Halloween Project 2018: Nightwings

Thought I would finally get around to showing off a Halloween project that was built for the 2018 Haunted Halloween Trail of Tears (link here).  Those that checked out the trail walkthrough probably noticed a couple of interesting adds that I didn’t really talk much about.   Was looking at my post queue and noticed I STILL had not posted on that project over a year later.  This must be remedied immediately (as in before this year’s Halloween hits the history books).  So without further delay I bring you Project Nightwings.

NightWings Halloween Decoration 2018

The night shots of the Nightwings didn’t come out the best because.. well, it was dark.  Last year there was close to zero ambient light on the trail making it a bit difficult on the final camera round.  Now, on the other hand, definitely upped the spook factor on the trail!  If you look closely you will see a giant pair of wings adorning the back of the gargoyle.  Now, making one pair of wings is fun enough, however, TWO wings pretty much puts this guy on cloud nine. The second pair is even harder to make out as the black wings blended into the darkness – unlike the zombie silhouette that looked awesome after an upgrade was made to the backing board that reflected the light better)

Nightwings Halloween Decoration 2018

Hit jump to see how these new props for 2018 came to be!

Continue reading Halloween Project 2018: Nightwings

Nightmare After Christmas – Pt 2 of 2

We are on our way back from a short trip to Tunica Mississippi for some birding and gambling.  Birding absolutely sucked and gambling wasn’t that much better.  Tunica has gone way down since our last visit there over a decade ago.  There were at least 3 or 4 casinos completely closed down and the ones remaining are definitely on the decline.  We won’t be planning a return visit.  We hit the Wapanocca National Wildlife Refuge in hopes of getting another Bobcat or finding that Cougar we located last time, but missed getting a picture of – struck out on both counts and a lot of the refuge was closed for migration or hunting.  Luckily we had a fun time at the Memphis Zoo so it wasn’t a total waste.  The good news is I can finish the Halloween post I started from the casino a few nights back,.  Yep, gonna take you on the rest of the trail so turn off all the lights and lock the doors – it’s the spooking hour.

Let’s start where we left off last time which brings us to the smoldering groundbreaker.  Ron gave me this item as a gift last year.  It jerks randomly while emitting wailing sounds and lights up.  It is set up for a fogger to enhance the effects, but we didn’t have one to spare this year – picked up a couple more at end of season sales this year, so look for that addition next year.

Halloween Haunted Trail of Tears 2018

Think I bought  this hanging lady at last year’s clearance sale,.  She lights up and has eerie sayings implying it was your fault she was left hanging on that tree.  A lot of people missed this particular decoration this year due to it being somewhat hidden on a side of the tree.,

Halloween Haunted Trail of Tears 2018

Hit the jump to see more sights from this year’s Haunted Trail of Tears.

Continue reading Nightmare After Christmas – Pt 2 of 2

Nightmare After Christmas – Pt 1 of 2

Hope everyone had a safe and merry Christmas or related celebration!  Thought I would continue my end of year stat pad .,..err, I mean Haunted Trail of Tears recollection posts.  If you recall on Christmas Eve I pulled a Tim Burton and provided insights into what it takes to bring our annual Halloween event to life,  All that hard labor is for a relatively few hours of entertainment for our friends and family.  That and Linda says it satisfies my Halloween obsession for a couple of months, well at least weeks.  This lights out tour ended up being a large post.  To keep your browser’s image cache from burning up, I’ve decided to break this into two parts.  Probably will keep the dialog to a minimum and focus on the images we took after the guests had left and just before that damn rain let loose.  Flip the switch off on the moon and queue the scary music, it’s time for a haunting!

Our trail started with Paul’s new blow-up dragon.  As mentioned previously, it was too big and too new to subject it to the woods.  A perfect way to start, tame enough for the children yet still impressive to see in the blackness

Halloween Haunted Trail of Tears 2018

Mr, Spider once again greets our guests as they begin the journey down to the bottoms

Halloween Haunted Trail of Tears 2018

Hit the jump to see the rest of the pictures from the first part of the trail.

Continue reading Nightmare After Christmas – Pt 1 of 2

New Stones for the Haunted Graveyard

Welcome to the first installment of the Halloween 2018 Haunted Trail of Tears Project Posts.  For those of you not familiar with my “addiction” as my wife refers to it, we host an annual Halloween cookout.  One of the main elements of that cookout is a haunted trail we set up in through our woods.  It is quite the event and has grown to epic proportions over the years.  My friend in haunt Paul and I tend to go overboard on our favorite holiday.  You might get the impression this is something that is thrown together in a week or so near Halloween.  Truth is, this is a 364 day a year activity.  Paul and I are constantly working on new decorations for the trail throughout the year.  The day of the cookout is simply the time when all our friends get to see what we have been squirreled away in our labs building all year.   During the next couple of months I am hoping to go through some of my new builds for the trail.  Keeping with tradition, I will also be posting about the overall haunted trail so  you get a better feel for just how labor intensive this is.  One of my projects this year was to improve our grave yard with some new headstones.

Project Head Stones for Halloween Haunted Trail of Tears 2018

How scary is that!  Pretty happy with how my stones turned out this year and figured I’d walk you through all the steps it takes to get one err.. three of these babies ready for the trail.  From a materials perspective, the base of the stones are made out of 2″ foam insulation.  A 4×8 sheet of that stuff is ridiculously expensive for what it is (~$22/sheet depending on the quality you get).  Look for sales and the 11% off at Menards events to bring that price point down a bit.  You should be able to get a number of good sized tombstones out of a single sheet.  One sheet yielded 5 for me – one from last year – link here three intricate stones and then the second from the left is just an extra from the remaining piece (if you look close you can tell is was left over from cutting out the cross).

Project Head Stones for Halloween Haunted Trail of Tears 2018

Hit the jump to see how this year’s stones were made!

Continue reading New Stones for the Haunted Graveyard