MCLEAN COUNTY — Haunted houses will be very scary.
And for some folks — particularly little ones — too frightening.
That’s why the Village of Downs placed on an “Un-Haunted” Haunted House for Halloween on Sunday. The scare-free occasion left on all of the lights within the constructing and doled out treats for younger goblins as an alternative of tips.
Rooms had been adorned in a number of themes, together with an out of doors graveyard, an evil laboratory, a cockroach-infested kitchen and skeleton-laden crypts.
Downs Mayor Mike James was dressed up on the occasion as Woody from the “Toy Story” film sequence. He informed The Pantagraph that their haunted home has been a practice for 29 years, with the haunt-less home taking place for at the least the final six years.
James mentioned final 12 months they needed to shut down every week earlier than opening, and that “actually harm us financially.”
“However this 12 months was simply superior,” he mentioned. “It’s great to see all the youngsters.”
The mayor added it was a very good factor that they had a 12 months off to construct the home out slightly bit higher.
“We really feel that is in all probability one in every of our greatest years, from a hang-out perspective,” James mentioned. “We’ve made it lots longer and it has proven with the turnout that we’ve had.”
James mentioned that they had a document 12 months with 5,700 folks going by the haunted home, and he anticipated at the least 300 or 400 children to tour by the non-haunted model Sunday.
“I noticed an avocado go in,” the mayor mentioned of 1 costume. “That was sort of cool.”
He mentioned some kids had been slightly apprehensive going inside on Sunday, “however as soon as they get inside, they’re like, aw, that is actually cool.”
“We take out all of the scary stuff,“ James mentioned. “There’s no blood and gore.”
And the youngsters like it, the mayor mentioned, including he can hear their reactions as they file in.
“The children had a blast,” mentioned Cody Friedlein of Downs, who was there with children Lincoln, Oliver and Bradley.
“We’ve acquired much more trick-or-treating to do,” Friedlein mentioned, ”stopping by grandma’s, grandpa’s, a pair associates’ homes and run across the streets right here in Downs.”
Three-year-old Colten Schroen, additionally of Downs, went by the home as Sprint from “The Incredibles.” He informed The Pantagraph the sweet was his favourite half, and he additionally appreciated the maze.
Mom Staci Schroen mentioned she appreciated the household involvement on the occasion.
“I admire simply getting the youngsters collectively,” Schroen mentioned.
Dad Jason Schroen added he seen extra of the small print in the home with the lights on.
The Sharples household got here out to the home with an entire Mario Brothers costume theme.
“It was the youngsters’ concept,” mentioned father Ryan Sharples, dressed as Wario. His little one, Owen, mentioned the kitchen cockroaches had been his favourite a part of the tour.
Grandfather Rush Benjamin of Ellsworth mentioned he was scared by the un-haunted home.
“Going by the darkish and going up the ramp there,” he mentioned, “man, that was scary.”
His grandchild, 4-year-old Fonsie Gosalbe, of Bloomington, made it by, too — twice.
“The one which had the bugs,” he mentioned of his favourite half.
The home is placed on by an incredible quantity of volunteer employees, the mayor mentioned, together with upward of 40 per evening.
Jill Kasprzak was a type of volunteers. She informed The Pantagraph that she cleans the haunted home “greater than I clear mine.”
Pet costume contest
Over in Bloomington, furry little ones additionally acquired in on the costumed enjoyable.
Pet Central Helps, a rescue shelter based mostly in Regular, placed on a pet costume contest hosted by Keg Grove Brewing Co. Registration charges had been $10, and proceeds had been donated to the shelter.
The primary spherical was for pet-only costumes, and the second was for pet and proprietor teams.
“We simply needed to have a extremely cute Halloween occasion that was family-friendly, for pets and households,” mentioned Stephanie Buhrow, Keg Grove’s director of particular occasions. ”This was what we got here up with.”
It’s the primary time the group has performed such an occasion, and Buhrow mentioned she hopes to make it an annual factor.
Karry Wealthy, of Atlanta, gained first place for the second spherical. She wore a My Little Pony costume, and was joined by an actual, residing pony, named Star.
Wealthy mentioned they’ve 4 horses at house which can be all registered as remedy animals, and her daughter Piper urged they bring about the horse as a last-minute plan. They acquired their costume provides from Social gathering Metropolis.
She additionally inspired everybody to go to Pet Central Helps and undertake a canine or a cat.
6 Halloween drink recipes
1 ounce Cointreau or different orange liqueur (Grand Marnier, triple sec)
1 ounce recent lemon juice
Brandied or maraschino cherries
2 lychee nuts, elective, see notice
Word: Lychee nuts can be found canned in worldwide meals shops.
1. Place cider, cognac, Cointreau and lemon juice in a cocktail shaker. Add ice, cowl and shake till the shaker feels very chilly to the contact, about 20 to 30 seconds. Pressure right into a glass and prime with zest and cherries.
2. If desired, place blueberries into lychee nuts to type “eyeballs” and serve with drink.
Per serving: 290 energy; no fats; no saturated fats; no ldl cholesterol; no protein; 25g carbohydrate; 23g sugar; 1g fiber; 17mg sodium; 7mg calcium
Tailored from Nation Dwelling
Pomegranate Rum Punch
1 small cinnamon stick, smashed
½ cup recent orange juice
1 (750 ml) bottle prosecco or different glowing wine, chilled
Pomegranate seeds, for serving
1. Place tea baggage and cinnamon stick in a big measuring cup. Add 1 cup boiling water; let steep 5 minutes. Pressure and funky to room temperature.
2. Mix tea, pomegranate juice, rum and orange juice in a pitcher or punch bowl. Slowly stir in prosecco. Serve over ice with orange slices and pomegranate seeds.
Per serving: 146 energy; no fats; no saturated fats; no ldl cholesterol; 1g protein; 15g carbohydrate; 13g sugar; no fiber; 9mg sodium; 19mg calcium
Tailored from Nation Dwelling
Black Magic Cocktail
2½ ounces black vodka, see notice
¾ ounce recent lime juice
¾ ounce easy syrup, see notice
Edible pearl mud, elective, see notice
Notes: Black vodka is made by Blavod, however it may be laborious to search out. Make your individual by including black meals coloring or gel right into a bottle of vodka, just a few drops at a time, and shaking till it turns into black. Or add blue, pink and inexperienced meals coloring or gel right into a bottle of vodka, just a few drops at a time, and shaking till it turns into black.
• To make easy syrup, boil collectively equal quantities of water and granulated sugar, stirring sometimes, till the sugar dissolves; will be saved in a clear jar within the fridge for a number of months.
• Edible pearl mud will be discovered at baking provide shops or within the baking aisle of craft shops. Don’t use comparable merchandise that don’t particularly say they’re edible.
Place black vodka, lime juice and easy syrup in a cocktail shaker, add ice and shake till chilly. Sprinkle edible pearl mud in backside of a martini or coupe glass. Pressure in drink. Add extra pearl mud if it’s not shimmery sufficient; stir with a bar spoon to mix it.
Per serving: 207 energy; no fats; no saturated fats; no ldl cholesterol; no protein; 12g carbohydrate; 11g sugar; no fiber; 1mg sodium; 3mg calcium
1½ ounces Cointreau or different orange liqueur (Grand Marnier, triple sec)
1 ounce recent lemon juice
1 small piece (½-1 inch) dry ice, elective
1. Add the Midori, Cointreau and lemon juice to a glass or cocktail shaker, add ice and stir till chilly. Pressure right into a lowball glass. Garnish with cocktail cherry.
2. If desired, rigorously add a chunk of dry ice. Don’t drink till the dry ice has dissolved.
Per serving: 243 energy; no fats; no saturated fats; no ldl cholesterol; 1g protein; 26g carbohydrate; 23g sugar; no fiber; 4mg sodium; 8mg calcium
Black Coronary heart Cocktail
½ ounce black vodka, see notice
1½ ounces creme de cassis
Sprint of dry (white) vermouth
Word: Black vodka is made by Blavod, however it may be laborious to search out. Make your individual by including black meals coloring or gel right into a bottle of vodka, just a few drops at a time, and shaking till it turns into black. Or add blue, pink and inexperienced meals coloring or gel right into a bottle of vodka, just a few drops at a time, and shaking till it turns into black.
Pour black vodka, fig vodka, creme de cassis and vermouth right into a cocktail shaker. Add ice, shake till chilly, and pressure right into a glass.
Per serving: 268 energy; no fats; no saturated fats; no ldl cholesterol; no protein; 21g carbohydrate; 18g sugar; no fiber; 2mg sodium; 30mg calcium
½ ounce orange liqueur (Cointreau, Grand Marnier or triple sec)
1½ ounces recent orange juice
½ ounce easy syrup, see notice
Notes: To make easy syrup, boil collectively equal quantities of water and granulated sugar, stirring sometimes, till the sugar dissolves; will be saved in a clear jar within the fridge for a number of months.
• Should you do not need a ½-ounce measure, use 1 tablespoon.
Pour white rum, gold rum, orange liqueur, orange juice, pineapple juice, lime juice, easy syrup and grenadine right into a cocktail shaker. Add ice and shake till chilly. Fill a tall glass with ice and pressure drink into it. Fastidiously pour 151 rum on prime; don’t stir. If desired, you possibly can gentle prime of drink on hearth.
Per serving: 350 energy; no fats; no saturated fats; no ldl cholesterol; 1g protein; 36g carbohydrate; 32g sugar; no fiber; 6mg sodium; 11mg calcium
Contact Brendan Denison at (309) 820-3238. Observe Brendan Denison on Twitter: @BrendanDenison