Haunted house to cater to all

Penticton Herald - - OKANAGAN - By AN­DREA PEA­COCK The Okana­gan Week­end

A well-known Kelowna haunted house is back this year with prom­ises of be­ing even scarier than pre­vi­ous years, while also of­fer­ing some­thing for peo­ple not want­ing to be spooked.

For the third year, Paul Coxe and his friend Clarence John­son are set­ting up a Hal­loween dis­play at Coxe’s house, with the goal of scar­ing as many peo­ple as they can.

“We’re al­ways look­ing for­ward to scar­ing peo­ple. That’s al­ways our goal,” said John­son. “Peo­ple go in think­ing they’re not go­ing to be scared and come out scared.”

A big part of the event is also rais­ing money and col­lect­ing food for the lo­cal food bank.

More than 3,000 peo­ple came through last year’s haunted house, rais­ing more than $2,400 in cash and 4,500 pounds of food.

“We’re hop­ing to beat that this year,” said John­son.

This year’s haunted house fea­tures many more an­i­ma­tron­ics, big­ger tents and more vol­un­teers to scare vis­i­tors.

“This year, we ac­quired a real cof­fin from a per­son who works at a fu­neral home,” said John­son.

Or­ga­niz­ers are also rev­ers­ing the or­der vis­i­tors walk through the yard, giv­ing re­peat vis­i­tors a dif­fer­ent ex­pe­ri­ence.

Plan­ning each year’s Hal­loween dis­play takes a whole year, said John­son.

“We started plan­ning while we were do­ing last year’s — how to do things a lit­tle dif­fer­ently, how to set cer­tain things up,” he said. “We chat about it all year round.”

Coxe was in­spired to start the haunted house out of his love for Hal­loween, said John­son.

“He’s al­ways had a Hal­loween dis­play, but less and less peo­ple were com­ing to his house,” he said. “One day, him and his daugh­ter de­cided to do a lit­tle big­ger dis­play, and we used his garage one year and we had more peo­ple show up, so I said, ‘why don’t you in­clude the back­yard?’”

Now, the Hal­loween dis­play wraps around Coxe’s house.

For those not in­ter­ested in be­ing scared by mov­ing an­i­ma­tron­ics and peo­ple jump­ing out at them, Coxe and John­son are of­fer­ing a time for peo­ple to en­joy the Hal­loween dis­play with­out be­ing scared.

“Last year, some peo­ple didn’t want to be scared, es­pe­cially the kids, but it was tough be­cause we would try not to scare them but some­times we end up scar­ing them by ac­ci­dent,” said John­son.

“This year, peo­ple will be able to go through the haunted house but not be scared.”

The Hal­loween haunted house, lo­cated at 945 Gren­fell Rd., will be open Fri­day, Oct. 26, Satur­day, Oct. 27, Sun­day, Oct. 28, and Wed­nes­day, Oct. 31.

The non-scary time is from 4:30 to 5:30 p.m., and the scary time is from 6 to 9 p.m.

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