Mt. Sterling Ghoul School will creep you out

The devil makes an appearance at Ghoul School, a haunted attraction put on at the former Mount Sterling Elementary school by the Mount Sterling Chamber of Commerce and Madison-Plains High School drama department.

(Posted Oct. 4, 2017)

By Kristy Zurbrick, Madison Editor

People are coming out of the woodwork to transform the former Mount Sterling Elementary school into a haunted attraction known as Ghoul School.

Tours are set for 8 to 10 p.m. Oct. 13-14, Oct. 20-21, and Oct. 27-28. Admission is $12.

Now in its third year, the Halloween-inspired event is a collaboration between the Mount Sterling Chamber of Commerce and students in Madison-Plains High School’s drama department.

“The first year, we had about 20 students help out. With its success, word got out, and more and more wanted to participate,” said Rebecca Burns, Chamber secretary.

Now, 30 to 50 students help to man the attraction each night, lending their acting and makeup talents. Students Sara Hoop and Aubrey Lilly serve as directors, helping to write scripts and recruit volunteers.

“It’s amazing what they do. They are so creative,” Burns said.

Leading the adult volunteer contingent is Mike May, an aficionado of all things spooky and creepy. The local resident starts months ahead of time to put more scares per square inch into the school’s classrooms, hallways, gym and basement. He even takes vacation time to prep for the event.

“He’s really the mastermind behind it all,” Burns said, adding that May and other adult volunteers are working to make Ghoul School “bigger and scarier” than in the past.

What to expect? Without giving away too much, Chamber vice president Steve Cooper listed the following as examples of what’s in store for those brave enough to take a tour: a librarian in a coffin, an autopsy in the biology room, a zombie prom in the gym, and a bone-chilling scene from the movie, “The Ring,” in the basement.

“There’s really no place you can catch your breath. Even the hallways are pretty well packed with scary stuff,” Cooper said.

How scary?

“Some pretty good sized guys chicken out of it part way through, but it’s all in good fun,” he said.

Ghoul School is open to all ages, though parents of young children should use their discretion. Children ages 12 and younger must be accompanied by an adult. Costumed guides will lead tours of 10 to 12 people at a time through the attraction.

Proceeds from Ghoul School are split evenly between the Chamber and the Madison-Plains drama department. Last year, each group netted $1,285.

“It’s really nice to have this partnership that’s a win-win for the community,” Burns said.

The former Mount Sterling Elementary School is located at 94 W. Main St.

Go to “Mount Sterling Ohio Chamber of Commerce” on Facebook for Ghoul School information and updates.

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