Haunted school open for tours

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haunted school web(Posted Oct. 15, 2015)

By Kristy Zurbrick, Madison Editor 

School can be described as challenging, fun or boring, depending on a person’s viewpoint. But what about spooky, gory and downright frightening?

Ghoul School, a haunted attraction at the former Mount Sterling Elementary building, 94 W. Main St., will bring to life a cauldron full of Halloween adjectives. The public is invited to take tours, if they dare, between 7 and 10 p.m. Oct. 23-24 and Oct. 29-31. Admission is $10 per person.

Ghoul School is presented by the Mount Sterling Chamber of Commerce and Madison-Plains High School. Students and adult volunteers transformed classrooms on the old school’s main floor into a biology lab gone bad, a home economics room in which body parts are sewn together, a darkly imaginative art room, and a detention room and principal’s office that are even scarier than the real thing. And visitors won’t want to miss the zombie prom in the auditorium.

Rebecca Burns, executive director of the Chamber of Commerce, gives much of the credit for the creepy results to the drama students at Madison-Plains.

“That’s a creative group of kids,” she said. “We wouldn’t be able to pull this off without them.”

Scott Spohler, a drama department advisor, said the students are having a blast making props and costumes and coming up with scary characters. They and other volunteers serve as the attraction’s actors.

“It’s a good opportunity for improvisation for several hours at a time. Every group of patrons that comes through will be different, so the kids will need to evolve their characters night by night,” he said.

Mike May, a Mount Sterling area resident and Halloween enthusiast, also is helping with preparations, loaning out an embalming table, coffin, skeletons, smoke machines, strobe lights and other props to help set the tone.

“He’s really imaginative. If somebody comes up with an idea, he knows how to make it happen,” said Steve Cooper, Chamber vice president.

The Chamber hopes to make Ghoul School an annual attraction. The organization has already experienced positive results this year with a car show and a remote controlled model airplane event.

“When we re-formed the Chamber last year, it was not only to promote local businesses but also to bring events to town… it really brings the community together,” Burns said.

Ghoul School is open to everyone. Children 12 and younger must be accompanied by an adult. Proceeds go to the Chamber and to Madison-Plains High School.

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