Haunted house to cater to all
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.