Ghost stories, creepy crawlies and spooky scenery; it’s that time of year again. Halloween is moving in swiftly, it’s the main time of year where being scary is acceptable. As college students I find it’s our duty to ensure the horror of our hallways and what better way than to bring in the Halloween spirit with a haunted house?
The first step to a haunted house is the look. Decorations are a must. At the very basic level one would need the typical orange and black color scheme combined with spiders neatly hung in their webs, snakes slithering among the walls, bats swinging from the ceiling, random limbs hanging about the room with the usual blood, and perhaps a wicked witch or two creeping in the background. But let’s be honest, we all can’t afford to go all out at a fancy arts and craft store. So here are some neat decoration ideas on a college student’s budget.
To bring in the black and orange theme one can start off with some generic crepe paper, which can be bought at any Dollar General or Wal-Mart. By stringing the streamers along the walls, you can add the first layer of festive color. Next come the spiders, and unless the idea is to really freak the roommate out it may be a good idea to go with plastic spiders in fake webs. These can be bought at the same stores mentioned before. For spider webs the best thing is to purchase cotton batting that can be stretched out and hung or taped about the room. Phony snakes can be slung on the furniture in the room or placed slithering along the floor.
To add another dimension to the room, paper bats can be strung up and places about randomly on the ceiling or even added to the walls. Finally to add the finishing touches place large shadowy figures around the room, these can be as simple as a black figure cutout placed on the wall, or as complex as a stature placed in the room. Lastly is lighting and music. Buy colored bulbs and replace the lamp lights, maybe changing to a red, purple or a green. This, along with some ever constant spooky music can certainly set the right fear-provoking mood.
In the freshman girl’s dormitory, up four flights of stairs on Porter’s third floor, they have accomplished in making the spirit of Halloween come alive all along their floor. The floor’s resident advisor, Michelle Moran, was creating “a Halloween bulletin board and wanted to do something more that everyone would enjoy.” After getting the festive idea approved by her supervisor, she along with several of the floors residents collected the necessary items and set to work. Katie Montgomery finds that “the hallway decorations are really cute, and for the people that participated, it was a fun bonding experience.”
Creating a haunted house takes time and preparation, and if that’s something you don’t seem to have, the best solution is visiting someone else’s haunted house. The Haunted Montrose House is featuring a spooky showing called the Slaughter House. The show is running all October long on Thursdays through Sundays and on Monday, October 31. The shows start at dark and only cost $16 for general admission.
Haunted houses are a great amount of fun, Carolyn Dishburger finds that getting startled is the main reason she goes and “as messed up as that is, it’s fun to get scared and get into the mindset of Halloween.” Even if decorating for Halloween isn’t something traditional, there is some excitement in being chased down the hallway with a chainsaw.
If the goal is to really have a haunted dorm room, just hold a séance and meet a few ghosts.