June 24, 2024

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N.B. news: Grand Bay-Westfield haunted house a hit

Grand Bay-Westfield, N.B., resident Ryan Collins has been transforming his front yard on Inglewood Drive into a spooktacular Halloween display for more than a decade.

He says growing up his mother used to decorate the house for the holiday, bringing in kids from around town eager to catch a glimpse.

“I just decided when I moved to Grand Bay that I am in an area with more kids now so I might as well put in a little more effort and see what happens,” says Collins.

“I’ve got a lot of creepy clowns which have to do with a sort of creepy circus theme on one side,” Collins says, describing his set up. “Then I have a graveyard in the middle of it and I just kind of went from there this year with some spider webbing and what not to add to the effect of more Halloween as opposed to the circus stuff which I have had in the past.”

The display features everything from animatronic clowns to skeletons, along with spiders and jump scares. Collins has nearly 100 unique features in his display that have been collected over the years from various stores.

A Halloween display on Inglewood Drive in Grand Bay-Westfield, N.B., takes its true form at night. (Source: Tara Cyr/Facebook)

“He would buy like new animatronics or like new decorations in like summer,” laughs Collins’ stepdaughter Makayla Plume. “And be like, ‘Yeah this will be good for Halloween,’ and we are like, ‘It’s summer time!’”

Set up for the scene begins during the last week of September, with Collins saying he takes his time to ensure each decoration is in just the right spot.

“When I’m setting it up at the start of the season, I had people walking by and saying where do you store this stuff,” Collins laughs, saying he stores it all in his one and a half car garage, noting no cars fit inside due to the large quantity of items. “How do you have so much they say.”

Collins’ girlfriend Taya Cyr has lived with Collins in his Grand Bay home for the last three years. She says residents flock to their front yard the entire month of October to check out the spooky scene.

“Every year there is not just like 20 or 50, it’s usually 100 or hundreds,” Cyr admits. “This year it has been bigger so far, the biggest yet, and we aren’t even close to Halloween yet.”

“There was a line of cars across the road and they were all coming in,” Plume recalls from just the other day. “This woman came up to me and said, ‘Oh my god this is so cool, how do you all do this?’”

On Tuesday, a group of pre-school kids made their way through the scene in the safer daylight hours.

“It’s just nice to see kids enjoying it and having fun with it,” says Collins. “I mean, they get a lot of big wows going through the yard which is great.”

Last year, more than 200 trick-or-treaters visited the house on Halloween night. Collins admits he isn’t even home to enjoy his work on the big night, instead letting his mother hand out candy and enjoy a tradition she started all those years ago.

“She goes in and have funs with kids coming in,” Collins says. “So she dresses up in a costume and what not and hands out candy to the kids the whole night.”

“It’s just for the community to come out and enjoy just as long as they respect it,” Collins notes. “As long as people aren’t hitting things with their hands and what not because I have had some issues with some things getting broke in the past.”

When Halloween night does roll around, don’t be surprised to see a few extra jump scares.

“I was thinking maybe we could like dress up and pretend to stand out and scare people,” Plume hopes. “Because that would be pretty funny.”

For more New Brunswick news visit our dedicated provincial page.