by Logan Gruber
Ryley Killinger, 15, of Sauk Rapids has a killer house. Really.
Killinger, basically on his own, turns 1711 Ninth Ave. N. into a Halloween paradise every year at the end of September. He’s been doing this for about three years and his parents, Amy and Scott, encourage it. So does his friend, Chris Hartman, 15, of Sartell.
“I like to decorate for Halloween, and I like scary movies,” Killinger said.
Some of his favorite movies include the Halloween series, the Friday the 13th series and Wrong Turn. He gets some of his ideas for his decorations from movies, while others he looks up on the Internet.
“Check out what he put over here!” Hartman exclaimed, pointing toward the garage door.
This particularly gruesome scene shows a lifeless body with its head severed by the closed, bloody garage door. The body is, of course, a stuffed fake, but one could be forgiven for questioning it while driving past.
“Tons of people drive past and slow down to see the decorations,” Killinger said. “Some people even come up and take photos of it or with it.”
When trick-or-treaters come knocking, Killinger has some surprises in store for them.
“Last year I had them go through the garage, with strobes and smoke. This year I’ll let them walk right up to the front door,” Killinger said.
There is definitely a shocker waiting for those who approach the front door if they don’t watch their step. But, shhhhh, we’re not letting the cat out of the bag.
Killinger said he gets some of his props from Party City, but others he has to go to Fargo or other places to get, due to their size and complexity.
A giant spider sitting above the garage door is one large item, while the giant spiderweb spread over the front yard is another. Various witches, ghouls, ghosts and black cats also populate the yard. Killinger said he changes it up every year and always adds more to the yard throughout the month leading up to Halloween. In fact, he said he might do some sort of maze next year. Or maybe something else entirely. Curious trick-or-treaters will just have to wait and see.