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Grim’s Haunted House & Trunk or Treat

Grim’s Haunted House & Trunk or Treat: Spooky Fun for the Whole Family

By Meghan Peterson, PhD


What is something local, fun for the whole family, and Halloween-festive? None other than Grim’s Haunted House and the Trunk or Treat event right here in Haddam. Now in its third consecutive year, the family-friendly, spooky fun-filled experience is Saturday, October 27 and runs from 6:00 p.m.-9:00 p.m. Mark your calendars.


Sponsored by the Haddam Economic Development Commission, this outing will also feature face painting and entertaining children’s games. In addition, the fun coincides with a good cause effort: donations will be accepted for both the Haddam Emergency Food Bank and Fuel Banks.


The Haunted House and Trunk or Treat are the brainchild of Chuck Cook. Although the event began in 2016, the inspiration for it actually stemmed from the time he made a coffin for a Halloween party to celebrate with his then 10-year-old granddaughter. Fast forward 13 years later, the inspiration has expanded, and the event “is growing in popularity every year.” By the time 2016 came around, Cook was in need for a “place to showcase it all.” He took up someone’s suggestion to contact Cindy MacNeil-Sola, then-Economic Development Coordinator. Chuck says that “Cindy was very happy to let us use the Community Center for the event.” In addition, “it was at this time I was also introduced to Frank Mucciaciaro who shared the same passion for Halloween as I did.” As a result of having the “good fortune of being introduced to Frank,” Cook says that he and Mucciaciaro “have made many of the props.” What is more, “Frank’s sons are programming geniuses (in my opinion) and they program and come up with all kinds of concepts.”


What exactly goes into the Haunted House preparations? Cook describes how nearly two dozen volunteers have assisted in the past. It takes a full three days to set the space up. Is Cook looking for volunteers? He says there is a need for volunteers this year, but that thankfully, “many of the great volunteers from the past two years are willing to help out again this year.”


While the Economic Development Commission oversees the Trunk or Treat portion of the event, Cook’s wife and wife’s daughter see to it that the face painting, games, candy, and prizes “for the little ones” are in ample supply!


What is new about 2018’s event is that it marks “the first year that Haddam Park & Recreation is engaged with the Trunk or Treat event,” according to Dave Fleig. He explains that Haddam Park & Recreation is trying to “expand” its footprint in town as well as “broaden community events” for people of all ages in town. To help ensure success specifically with the Trunk or Treat portion, Fleig says that “we need a combination of 15-20 people to help with the event.  We usually have 6-8 adults help before the event putting together the haunted house and tent. On the day of the event, we usually have 10+ volunteers (kids and adults).”


Fleig adds that “[t]his particular event is just wonderful.  It provides a safe environment for kids to come together and enjoy the Halloween festivities.” Indeed, Cook seconds that, noting that the  Haunted House & Trunk or Treat is “a great free event for the whole family – something for all ages.”

            Bring the whole family on down to Higganum Center on Saturday, October 27, 6:00 p.m.-9:00 p.m. for some fun and yes…lots of candy.

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Photos courtesy of Chuck Cook



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