By SUE SUCHYTA
Sunday Times Newspapers
ALLEN PARK – With a towering, 12-foot skeleton in their front yard, an oversized, menacing spider on their roof and a snarling werewolf by the sidewalk, the Keene family loves decorating for Halloween.
At their house on Cortland, multi-colored lights cast an ever-changing spooky glow on gravestones, ghosts, pumpkins and an ominously chained coffin.
Torie Keene, 33, said she and her husband, Larry, 30, a “Halloween fanatic,” along with their 6-year-old son, Logan, have been decorating their yard for Halloween ever since they moved into the neighborhood three years ago.
“Every year we add on a couple of new pieces,” she said. “The skeleton is new to us this year, and (Larry) mostly built the spider that is up on the roof.”
Torie Keene said they built the wrought-iron fence which encircles the display, and they made a new arch this year, out of sticks, which stands near the sidewalk as an entryway to their spooktacular display.
Larry Keene said he grew up loving Halloween.
“I love the scary stuff,” he said. “I grew up watching horror movies, and Halloween is just pure fun.”
He said the display gives passersby something to enjoy, as well as a distraction from their everyday concerns.
Torie Keene said her husband insists they watch a Halloween-themed movie every night for the month of October.
“We watch whatever else we want for the entire remainder of the year – I get to pick whatever else it is – but October is his time to shine,” she said.
Torie Keene said they are in an informal, friendly competition with their friends across the street, who also decorate their yard for Halloween.
“Every year we add something, and every year they add something,” she said.
Larry Keene said their electricity bill for the month isn’t too bad, as long as he turns off the lights inside the house when he turns on the colorful display lights outside.
Torie Keene said they usually turn everything off by midnight.
She said the animated werewolf has been known to upset neighborhood dogs being walked past their house.
Torie Keene said the display takes a day to set up, and a day to disassemble and pack away. She said this year’s daunting task will be finding a place to store their recently acquired 12-foot skeleton.
“We have a lot of people who drive by really, really slow,” she said. “We let the kids come in the yard, and if we are outside, we will let them take pictures with the skeleton. It’s just fun for the neighborhood.”