By Brian Bloom
Rory Mack and Steve Leet both looked at each other and smiled.
Here, in a stereotypical subdivision cul-de-sac, was an anything but typical display.
Surrounded by an array of home-made animatronics, tombstones, skeletons, spiders and about anything “Halloween” that the mind can imagine the two shared the all-knowing smile in answer to the most obvious of questions.
“Why? The pair said in reply. “Because of that,” they said, pointing and giggling as a visitor screamed and shouted with glee as they inspected another Halloween adventure.
“It’s about the kids,” Leet said while sweeping the cove with his arm. “We like to have fun with the kids.”
In a time when people often don’t even know their neighbor’s name; six neighbors came together for a common cause to create one of the most unique Halloween displays in the mid south.
Located in Rockyford Subdivision at the intersection of Springtree and Domino Cove off Old Brownsville Road, this cornucopia of scary creations has become a Bartlett tradition.
“I think we started it eight years ago,” Leet said, checking with his neighbors for accuracy. “It started out when my brother gave me some old Styrofoam for me to make tombstones. Pretty soon the neighbors starting bringing me stuff to put in my yard and it just… expanded,” he laughed.
Soon the entire cul de sac got involved. Steve and Robinelle Reeve, Eddie and Trudy Davenport, AW and Kathleen Yancey, Steve and Elizabeth Leet, Michael Towns and Bartlett Police public affairs officer Rory Mack teamed up to provide a walking, and according to the group, sometimes running tour.
This isn’t a drive-by event. This is interactive, walk-the-yards and inspect all of the hidden haunts kind of evening.
“We want them to get involved,” Leet said. Whether it’s the crashing trash can or the mowed over suburbanite at the Mack’s house or the electric chair or guillotine at the Leets’, the haunted Halloween trail offers something for all ages.
Make it down to the Davenport’s – if you dare – and peer into the doom pit, a cascading hole to heck and back. Try the waters are the blood pond or read the inscriptions on dozens of spider-draped gravestones like those encrypted “Al B Back” and “M T Box.”
And while you’re there, don’t forget to drop a donation. The funds all go towards St. Jude’s.
Make it to the Reeves and bats fill the air, if you can make it passed the ghosts streaking across the sky. And daze at the Yancey’s. At 87 years young, AW is the veteran of the bunch.
The Halloween haunt is lit for viewing until about 9 p.m. weeknights and a little later on the weekends.
Do they do this for Christmas?
“There’s no reason to,” they laugh, “Halloween’s over.”