Halloween Haunt Odyssey 2016: Farms, Séances & Cemeteries in the Valley
Hollywood Gothique made a circuit of home haunts in the San Fernando Valley last night. While hitting some familiar favorites (Boney Island, Rotten Apple 907 – more on which we will post later), we visited several lesser known yard displays worthy of attention. For all the macabre details, read on – if you dare!
On the way to Rotten Apple 907’s Not So Enchanted Forest, we stumbled on an apparently unnamed home haunt at 3600 Clarke Street in Burbank. The front yard is filled with tombstones. The house is festooned with skeletons and Jack O’Lanterns. A bay window reveals a hooded old crone. “Grim Grinning Ghosts” (from Disney’s Haunted Mansion) wafts through the air, and if you’re too lazy to get out of your car, you can listen to the music at 99.1 on your stereo. Though mostly a static display, house does feature a pair of dancing silhouettes in a side window.
The Farm at 1252 Norton Avenue offers a display in the yard and a short walk-through in the garage. A rather diminutive skeleton guided us through the later, making sure we fully observed all the grim details, including one or two motion-sensitive gags. As the name suggests, this home haunt features a farming theme, with Jack O’Lanterns and skeletons perched among straw and bales of hay. A very impressive facade transforms the garage into a haunted barn, topped by a quite threatening skeletal figure, poised as if reaching down toward you.
The Fillmore Graves’ Jack-O-Lantern Farm at 14318 Emelita Street features a yard display with bit of a backwoods feel, with rundown shacks and tombstones suggesting a moss-covered cemetery. Frogs croak; ravens caw; and Poe and Lovecraft are buried practically side by side. Those who dare may advance to the porch and peruse the séance scene inside the front window, with a candle floating above a Ouija board (check out the video at top).
Van Oaks Cemetery, at 5822 Norwich Avenue is within easy distance of Fillmore Farms. Its ancient gate stands near the sidewalk, inviting trick-or-treaters to enter if they are willing to brave not only graveyard on the lawn but also a silent ghosts who wafts back and forth in a window, occasionally peering back at those peering in. There is also lovely tribute to the late lamented Studio City yard haunt, The Hallowed Haunted Grounds, in the form of a gravestone marked “H.H. Grounds: 1973-2005.”
Finally, here are a trio of shots from three houses near the Boney Island yard haunt, which is located at 4602 Morse Avenue.