Highbury Cemetery, 2019

Halloween Night: It had been a constant downpour over the previous 24 hours and everything was soaked. At roughly 6 pm, the temperatures dropped into the 40s and a fierce, whipping wind kicked up. The utter misery was compounded when as the night ended, I actually saw wet snowflakes floating down from the incessant grey clouds above...

Luckily for us though, our new neighborhood had its trick-or-treat on Sunday, four full days before Halloween night! For once, we had outsmarted old Mother Nature, and after four years of getting rain on our Halloween display, we were able to finally catch a break.

Sunday nervously started with slight drizzle and strong gusts of wind. According to my weather app, both should have subsided by noon, but by 3 pm the winds were still a lingering problem.

Add to that the stress of basically starting over in a new neighborhood and wondering/desperately hoping that trick-or-treaters would actually come down our cul-de-sac road, and my nerves were completely frazzled.

But shortly before trick-or-treat started at 5, a wonderful thing happened. The clouds broke up, giving way to unexpected rays of twilight sun, and more importantly, the winds stopped. Not just died down, but completely stopped. It was incredible. It looked like the Pumpkin Gods were looking down upon us favorably this year!

And as the clock struck 5, we saw our first trick-or-treaters making their way up the street. 

We were ready...

For two hours, we ended up having a fairly steady stream of trick-or-treaters, parents, and curious neighbors coming to check out our Halloween display. And although we didn't set up all of our props this year, everyone was surprised and excited by what we had done.

Overall, I couldn't be happier with our first display here. With the weather finally cooperating, the total lack of wind gave us the best fog effects we had ever achieved, allowing thick, creeping fog to roll around the cemetery tombstones, across the sidewalk, down over the curb, and eventually down the street. I couldn't believe it. Check out this photo to see what I'm talking about.

Yes, there are things that I'll need to address for next year, like better tombstone lighting, a few more figures and animatronics, and a new cemetery fence, but I was pleased with the ways things came together and we were able to present a display unlike anything else in this neighborhood.

The next morning, we were the talk of my son's school bus. The seed has been planted, and Highbury Cemetery will be back bigger and bolder for 2020.

We're down to only 363 days until Halloween, so it's time to get started again! But for just a few moments, pull up a chair, sit back, relax and enjoy my photos of Highbury Cemetery, 2019...

My 2018 tombstone creep, complete with rotating upper body. I built it last year, but rain (of course) prevented me from ever putting it up in the display. He had his grand reveal this year and his Spider Hill Prop Works Compact Prop Turner worked flawlessly all night! Next year, I want to put more focused lighting on him and at some point, I'll post a full tutorial for this build...

I absolutely LOVE the red leaves that were dropping from this tree in the front yard. I was able to rake them up and use them as an added natural, organic element sprinkled around my tombstones!

As always, a HUGE Highbury thank you must go out to Mrs. Highbury, brother Scrapes, Sharon, Karen, Laurie, Stacey and Vince for coming over, helping set up, running the haunt, and then tearing down all in one day. Without you, this haunt would never happen. (And yes, your delayed thank you shirts are being printed and will be delivered shortly!!)

And this year, I also wanted to thank everyone from Hillside Estates, our new neighborhood, for coming out and making Halloween a fun success. We had a great turnout of 180 trick-or-treaters in year one, and I'm looking forward to great things next year. Bigger and badder, so be ready!!




Lisa said...

Congrats on your new neighborhood! Of course, it looked fantastic!

Lisa / Maple Grove Cemetery

Anonymous said...

I'm seeing this almost a year late but your display was great! I look forward to seeing what you cook up this year. Glad you got your Halloween mojo back!

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