The Horror on McLellan returns to Kingsbridge Friday night when seasonal yard displays featuring bloody barbers, killer clowns, ghoulish gravediggers, scary skeletons and severed heads begin welcoming wide-eyed kids and collecting donations for Amherstburg’s Food and Fellowship Mission.
The front yard of Ken Grant’s home at 440 McLellan is decked out this year as “Damien’s Barbershop,” showcasing a wild werewolf dealing cards, ugly brutes wielding chainsaws, a fog machine and bloody body parts scattered like autumn leaves around handmade tombstones etched with names like Dianne Rott and Doug M. Deep.
Across the street, at 437 McLellan, Derek and Heather Shank are putting the finishing touches on a grisly midway theme aptly dubbed “Carnevil.” There are killer clowns, axe-hurling zombies, menacing ticket-takers and a ghoul in a Villanova jersey sporting an eyeball necklace.
There’s hardly a spare blade of grass to be found between the two homes, which are packed with gory props, inside jokes and Halloween memorabilia that lights up and moves – including a vomiting monster, gyrating legs on a body overturned into a toxic waste bin and the ever busy gravedigger. Heather says you need to come back when it’s lit at night for the full experience and I plan on doing just that. You should too!
The Horror on McLellan opens for the season at dusk on Friday, Oct. 8. The displays will be lit up and open through to Halloween from dusk to 9 p.m. on Thursdays and Sundays and on Fridays and Saturdays from dusk to 10 p.m.
Guests are asked to respect COVID-19 guidelines when viewing the displays and encouraged to donate non-perishable food items.
Last year, the event collected 2,020 items of food and more than $525 in monetary donations for Amherstburg’s Food and Fellowship Mission, which does so much for so many, especially as we head into the colder months and the Christmas season. What a generous Town!
People traveled last year from all over Windsor and Essex County and even from as far as Chatham to see the ghoulish displays, which reach fever pitch on Halloween night, when the Grants and Shanks pull out all the stops for one final monster blowout to cap the spooky season. More than 400 kids trick-or-treated there last Halloween and passersby probably numbered more than 1,000.
The Shanks stick with the Carnevil them each year, expanding and adding new items each season, but Grant goes all out on a new theme each year. Last year was a haunted wedding and the year before that was a haunted butcher shop. The Halloweens prior the themes were a haunted schoolhouse and a haunted campground. On tap for next year is a haunted medical clinic called The End Clinic and the theme planned for 2023 is The Roadkill Grill.
Grant works at Chrysler and had extra time to work on his pet project this year with the microchip shortage idling Windsor Assembly Plant. It shows. He takes great pride in his handmade decorations, as he should, and was busying himself Wednesday night regulating the speed and volume of the purple puke coming out exorcist-style from the mouth of one of his monsters.
“It’s a passion of mine, a hobby. The kids enjoy it and the parents do too,” says Grant. “There’s a little kid in everybody, I don’t care how old you are.”