Haunted garage seeks to scare away dons
Dan Earl may not have skeletons in his closet, but he has plenty in his garage, and after nearly two decades of scaring the Juneau community, he’s still going strong.
“I’ve been doing this for a little over 19 years now and it’s slowly getting bigger and bigger,” Earl said. “I just feel like it’s good to give back to the community in any way possible.”
Earl’s Haunted Garage at 9420 Berners Ave., is ready to kick back and rock again from 6 p.m. to 11 p.m. Saturday, Sunday, and Monday, October 29, 30, and 31. Although some of the attractions inside may have changed, the cost of admission has not and donations of canned food or $2 still get you through the door. Earl said all donations go to Helping Hands and the Southeast Alaska Food Bank, as well as other local food pantries in Alaska.
“Canned food drives are really needed in this community. Thanksgiving is coming up and with inflation, it’s all been tough on people and families, so we want to be able to help wherever we can.
Earl, who works as an AT&T Alascom facilities mechanic during the day, said he started his haunted garage for all ages initially as a way to keep busy while staying home with his newly-born daughter. born at the time.
“The first motivation was that my daughter was born, so I stayed home with her and my work got done in October, so to keep myself busy while she was taking a nap, I thought, ‘Hey, I will build a witch,’ Earl said. “And then from there it became, ‘Oh, I’m going to build a Frankenstein and put it in the driveway.’ And then this kind of building more and more rooms and then I bought a house with a garage and then I was like, ‘Oh, what can I do now?’ Then I tore down my garage and built a bigger one, and I thought, ‘Okay, I guess I’m doing something bigger now.’
According to Earl, it has grown slowly since then and although many neighborhood children have grown up since then, there is no shortage of new generations to keep the tradition going.
“I was thinking of taking a year off, but then you see all the new kids say, ‘That was the best thing last year, I hope you do it again,'” Earl said. “You’re blaming yourself again, but you like seeing that, meeting new people, and those kids who are suddenly not so fearless anymore, so it’s fun.”
Families with young children can rest easy, as Earl said there was nothing alive to jump out and surprise people as they walked through. Relying on the animatronics and lighting alone, Earl said this event was more about taking your time rather than being scared.
“It’s more if you had to go south to like Disneyland or something, the further you go through it the more you see,” Earl said. “You never know what’s around the next corner and there might be something you missed. Depending on the intensity of the day or night or this time, I normally allow people to go through it multiple times, so they can see what they may have missed because they are in a rush the first time. And then, of course, doing it three nights gives people an opportunity to come back and say, “Oh, I want to see it again, I know I missed something.”
Earl’s garage isn’t the capital’s only spooky sight. Other Halloween events around town listed on social media and on the Juneau Empire Events Calendarto understand:
FRIDAY, SATURDAY, SUNDAY, OCT. 28, 29 and 30
Haunted Hollow Huskies, 6 p.m. to midnight, Oct. 28 and 29, and 6 p.m. to 10 p.m., Oct. 30, Mendenhall Campground. This drive-in event takes place on Halloween weekend. It costs $20 per car.
FRIDAY OCT. 28
HBS – Fun House for a Cause5:30-7 p.m. Harborview Elementary School, 1255 Glacier Ave.
This month, the Roots and Shoots Club, HBE’s fifth-grade student-led community action group, is hosting a Halloween Fun House event featuring an obstacle course, body art station, candy and a bake sale. All proceeds will go directly to Glory Hall as well as the Juneau Animal Shelter. All attendees are asked to wear your costume and support our community. $5 admission per child. Anyone interested in volunteering can do so by visiting signupgenius.com/go/10C0E45AEA722A5FBC34-halloween.
FRIDAY/SATURDAY, OCT. 28 and 29
Capital City Fire/Rescue Haunted House5:30 p.m. to 9:30 p.m., 2601 Sherwood Drive.
Join the CCFR at the Hagevig Regional Firefighter Training Center for their annual fundraiser for first responders. Sweatshirts and stickers available for purchase as well as hot chocolate, cider, popcorn and cotton candy. Admission is $5 per person.
SATURDAY, OCT. 29
Trunk or annual treat10 a.m.-12 p.m., the Chapel of the Lake,
The parking lot at the Lakeside Chapel will be set up so families can go car to car to get treats, play games and maybe see some fun decorations along the way. Parking will be available in the auxiliary parking lot next to the UAS or in the upper parking lot by the UAS entrance.
Halloween Scare-A-Thon ’22 – Half Marathon, 10 a.m., Pioneer Road. at the north end of the Douglas Highway.
The Halloween Half Scare-a-Thon offers a round trip with views of Fritz Cove and the glacier. The weather is very changeable for this race – from hot sun to slippery sleet, so please be prepared. ROUTE: (1) Start at the Pioneer Road trailhead at the north end of the NorthDouglas Highway, (2) Then turn right onto Fish Creek Road (Eaglecrest Road) to the aid station at the 1 mile reversal (before big hill), (3) and back. There will be sweets and healthy snacks, as well as a costume contest. Register at raceentry.com/races/halloween-half/2022/register.
Riverbend Elementary School Halloween Fun Run1 to 3 p.m., 2901 Riverside Drive.
Join Girls on the Run of Greater Alaska and Juneau Girl Scouts for a “Ghoul Empowerment” with activities for the whole family. If you would like to help decorate, run games, hand out treats, or oversee and encourage the Fun Run, please register at tinyurl.com/HalloweenFunRun2022.
Halloween Video and Music (Godzilla Eats Las Vegas) 3 p.m., Juneau Arts & Culture Center, 350 Whittier St.
It even includes a fun afternoon of music in the spirit of Halloween. Watch “Godzilla Eats Las Vegas” as the ensemble plays the soundtrack, sit on the edge of your seat listening to the eerie opening of Bach’s “Toccata and Fugue in D Minor”, hear the heavy footsteps of Berlioz’s “March to the Scaffold”. Costumes are encouraged. Tickets can be purchased at Hearthside Books and JACC. $35 for parents and children living in the same household; $5 students; $15 seniors; $20 general.
All American Home Service Trunk or Treat3-5 p.m., 2765 Sherwood Lane F1.
Take part in the second annual Halloween Trunk or Treat event. There will be face painting, games, a photo booth and of course candy.
SUNDAY OCT. 30
Ninth Annual Spooktacular Diving and Underwater Pumpkin Carving Contest4-7pm (divers arrive 1pm), Auke Recreation Area Raven Shelter.
Join a spooky group of local divers and compete in Juneau’s ninth annual Spooktacular Dive & Underwater Pumpkin Carving Contest. The pumpkins will be voted on by the participants and the winners of each category will receive a prize. There will also be a chili kitchen, so everyone is encouraged to email Courtney Hart at [email protected] to let them know what you plan to bring to eat so they can get together. install accordingly. Also contact Hart if you need snorkel gear. All divers must be certified in open water. Costumes are encouraged and both divers and non-divers are welcome.
Atsganee Yagiyee (Scary Day)2-5 p.m., Elizabeth Peratrovich Hall, 320 W. Willoughby Ave.
This event will allow families to focus on Halloween for families with little tribal citizens. Atskanée Yagiyee is a time for unifying families and socializing: connecting with families and practicing positive family times.
Halloween Jam6 p.m., 2525, boul. Industrial.
Halloween costumes and props encouraged. A photographer will be present. $5 registration; donations are welcome. (Open structure pole play with waiver). Sign up at app.squarespacescheduling.com/schedule.php?owner=25392019&appointmentType=38085577
MONDAY OCT. 31
Mendenhall Mall presents Trunk or Treat4-7 p.m., 9105 Mendenhall Mall Rd.
Mendenhall Shopping Center organizes stuff or treats inside the mall. All ages are welcome.
• Contact journalist Jonson Kuhn at [email protected]