Annual Halloween Show “A Labor Of Love” for Cal Simons – The Royal Gazette

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Updated: 04 Nov 2021 8:04 AM

For every Halloween over the past 20 years, Calvin Simons has made his house a show and opened it up to his neighborhood.

Like everyone else, he had to take a break in 2020 because of the coronavirus pandemic, but by the time October arrived this year, he was determined not to let the children down.

On Monday, Cedar Hill resident Warwick turned on the lights and invited people to walk or drive and take a look.

“We were trying to do it for Saturday and Sunday, but last week the weather was terrible,” he said. “Since I went through the building process, I figured I would do it right after Halloween – anyone who wants to come and see it, that’s fine.

“It was just something for the kids in the neighborhood. I stay two minutes from Purvis [Primary] School. [The students] would come across and ask, “Are you doing the haunted house?” Are you doing the haunted house? ‘ And I would say, “Yeah, I do guys. “

Mr. Simons has loved Halloween since he was a child. His aunt Alice threw an annual party at his Devonshire home which he never missed.

“We used to go here looking for apples and doing all kinds of things. My cousins ​​and I would walk all over Loyal Hill cheating and dealing and coming back and having fun. It was something I did when I was young and something I wanted my daughters to experience when I had a family.

Mr Simons’ first parties were for his students at West End Elementary School, where he taught physical education, health sciences and social studies for 25 years.

“I used to do it for children; it was just something you did in schools, ”he said. “I finally took some things home and put them on my porch, then they went from my porch to my garage, then I got to the point where I was building a structure outside my house. . “

Over the years, designing and creating elaborate haunted houses has become “a labor of love”.

“Sometimes I had people dressing in costumes inside the haunted house – friends and family would come,” said Mr. Simons, who joined the Ministry of Youth, Sports and Humanities. Leisure after leaving West End Primary but has since retired.

“It was like a maze. You would go in and it would take you five to ten minutes to cross. “

To keep things interesting for the neighborhood, he changed his designs every year. Dracula, the vampires, and the “spider webs you literally have to walk through” were all part of Mr. Simons’ annual fear party.

He does everything, according to his daughter Calvina, with a plan that he draws on paper every year.

“Sometimes in haunted houses I had people who had to bend down and crawl on their hands and knees, but it would be very limited because sometimes there were old people walking through it and it was a bit difficult for them. to get up after someone scares their lives, ”he laughed.

Mr. Simons’ haunted houses typically took about two weeks to design, build and install; it finished this year’s driving display in half that time.

“I took some of the things that I would normally have inside the haunted house and displayed them outside. It made the ride a little quicker. [to build].

“Sometimes I get very creative. For me, the drive-by really goes off the beaten track. I prefer a more controlled environment. With car lighting, you don’t really get that scary effect. It’s more just a display like the way people decorate the front of their houses at Christmas.

This year in particular, traffic was a major concern, as Mr. Simons was aware that people outside the neighborhood might want to take a look.

“This is one of the fears I have. I don’t want the traffic to be pushed back to Middle Road. So we encourage people to take a look, fast forward and experience it.

Judging by the number of Ziplock bags the family filled with candy and handed out, over 85 children enjoyed Monday night’s exhibit. Wednesday, he packed it all, until next year.

Calvin Simons’ creative Halloween drive-by garnered a lot of attention this year (Photograph by Akil Simmons)

Calvin Simons’ creative Halloween drive-by garnered a lot of attention this year (Photograph by Akil Simmons)

Calvin Simons’ creative Halloween drive-by garnered a lot of attention this year (Photograph by Akil Simmons)

Calvin Simons’ creative Halloween drive-by garnered a lot of attention this year (Photograph by Akil Simmons)

Calvin Simons’ creative Halloween drive-by garnered a lot of attention this year (Photograph by Akil Simmons)

Calvin Simons’ creative Halloween drive-by garnered a lot of attention this year (Photo provided)

Calvin Simons’ creative Halloween drive-by garnered a lot of attention this year (Photo provided)


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