Halloween is usually about candy overdoses, cheap costumes and crazy nights. But for some people, the holiday means something more. From haunted houses to elaborate homemade costumes to running parties, these Canes take Halloween a little more seriously than most.
Every year at senior Jennifer Castellani’s house, her family hosts a miniature haunted house for the neighborhood children. What started out as an amusing pastime for Castellani’s brother has now grown to a local attraction that attracts more than 500 people and requires more than three Costco-sized bags of candy.
This year, Castellani’s brother, who has a passion for special effects, constructed a Frankenstein-themed house and posed as the monster. Last year, the house was based on the “Pirate of the Caribbean” franchise and included a ship, a zombie pirate and smoke.
“My brother loves special effects,” she said.
Castellani’s role is usually to hand out candy.
She said they have visitors who drive over specifically to visit her family’s haunted house.
“We always run out of candy,” she said.
For junior Kim Maples, costume hunting for Halloween begins five months in advance. Since her senior year of high school, Maples has spent each summer building her own costume based on popular TV shows and video games.
Her guises have included Link from the “Legend of Zelda” video games series, Korra from the Nickelodeon TV show “Legend of Korra” and Marceline the Vampire Queen from the Cartoon Network show “Adventure Time.”
Maples spends between $50 and $100 on each costume, purchasing fabric, clothes, wigs and other items. Sometimes, she also reuses pieces from year to year. The brown boots from the Link outfit were dyed red for this year’s Marceline costume.
She usually keeps her costume a secret until she can debut it at a Halloween party.
“When I dress up, I like the appreciation people have for my costume,” she said. “I know my friends are going to get a kick out of it.”
Senior Jon David works as a party promoter, recruiting people to attend parties at clubs such as LIV and Rokbar. David is spending his Halloween night working at a “Walking Dead”-themed party in Wynwood. The party is being sponsored by AMC.
While at the party, David has to tend to his guests, making sure that they’re happy.
“It’s a lot of customer service,” David said.
He said that he makes sure they have free drinks and introduces them to other people.
“People that I bring, I want them to have a good time,” David said.
But his work starts long before the party. David has to invite people to the party, through Facebook and word of mouth.
“It’s a lot of knowing … which people will bring people,” David said.
David also has to coordinate buses to take people from Red Road to the event. He bargains with companies, makes sure there is insurance and that they have all of the details for the event.
What: Reel Horror Ball
Where: Moore building, 3841 NE Second Ave., Miami
When: 8 p.m. to 4 a.m. Thursday
Cost: $20 with the promo code “jondavid”
For more information visit reelhorrorball.com or facebook.com/events/634019519982978.