By Colton Steiner
Bluffton students are about to get a scare that doesn’t involve their grades. The Residence Hall Association will host the “Haunting of Founders” starting at 9 p.m. Friday, Oct. 30. Nathaniel Haas and others have been planning since September with the goal of making this year’s event spookier than ever.
Last year, the event took place in Lincoln Hall, but the RHA thought Founders Hall would be a ideal location to host the event this year. While last year was a success, there are some changes that have been made. Because there was a mini-haunted house happening while there was a dance, there was a line going through the dance which made traffic difficult.
“Last year during the Haunting of Lincoln, we had put on a mini-haunted house, but that was literally created the night of the event,” said Haas. “Seeing how that mini-haunted house was popular for many people, we wanted to make that a main aspect of our event. We wanted to have more room to have an actual haunted house so we found that founders would be a great location.”
The extra room will help make the experience for the students even scarier, Haas said. The Haunting Committee, knowing that the haunted house might not be for everyone, also included a black-light dance that students can dress up in costume for, along with games and food.
So how did this tradition start?
On Halloween 2012, Spencer Gensen, now a Bluffton graduate, planned a Halloween-themed dance party for some friends and called it the “Haunting of Neufeld” because that was where it was held. When Gensen graduated in 2014, all the equipment and props sat in the basement. When the RHA heard about where the props were being stored, they thought that they should put them to good use and have a “haunting of” event planned. The event is one that Haas hopes to have for the future.
“This is our fourth year for this event and it just keeps getting better,” said Haas. “Our inventory grows each year, as well as the size of our Haunted House. I have had people already asking me about dates and times for the event, and that is just so exciting to know people look forward to the “Haunting of” Event.”
With plans of this “haunting of” being a bigger success than last years, the RHA expects an even bigger turnout than past years.
“Last year’s attendance was above 300 people and we acknowledge that part of that was the fact it was in Lincoln,” Haas said. “The event was only supposed to last until 11 but ended up going until 11:30 because people didn’t want to stop dancing. We learned a lot from last year’s Haunting of Lincoln, and I can honestly say that this year will be 10 times better than last year’s event in terms of things to do.”