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Haunted House with a heart open at homeless shelter

Admission 'cost' helps SCV winter shelter

Posted: October 26, 2012 1:30 p.m.
Updated: October 26, 2012 1:30 p.m.
 

Serving scares and the local homeless, a mother-daughter team from Stevenson Ranch will host a haunted house with a heart at the Santa Clarita Valley homeless shelter in Saugus today through Sunday.

For admission from 5 p.m. to 9 p.m., thrill-seekers are asked to donate paper or foam dishware, plastic utensils, 35-gallon or larger trash bags, 409 cleaning flud, blankets, towels and coffee to be used at the winter homeless shelter.

Inspired by two family traditions, Theresa and Mackenna Basore melded their history of volunteer work with their passion for scare tactics to provide needed supplies for the shelter while raising a few screams.

“We’ve always had Halloween parties at our house, but nothing on this scale. It’s our family tradition,” Theresa Basore said. “Then we just decided if we are going to put all this together, it should be for a better cause. We were inspired to do it.”

“I thought it would be fun to do (a haunted house) on a grander scale and help people out,” said Mackenna Basore, 14, a freshman at West Ranch High School.

The Basore family throws parties and constructs a haunted house in the family garage every Halloween.
Mackenna Basore’s Girl Scout Gold Award, an 80-hour community service project, provided a perfect intersection between her two family traditions.

“The Gold Award encourages girls to help out in their community. It makes you more responsible because it involves a lot of work,” Mackenna Basore said.

Mackenna has completed about 30 total hours gathering donated materials, planning the layout of the haunted house, cleaning the rooms and filling the haunt zones with gross and ghostly decorations.

Before walking visitors through a haunted house — actually, there are two of them — Mackenna Basore educates the groups about the shelter and local homeless, sharing information about the shelter’s volunteer and donation needs.
The “Haunted Hospital” in the dining hall leads teens and adults through an eerie emergency room, spooky psych ward and bloody surgery unit.

“People got really scared. One kid even ran out halfway through,” Mackenna Basore said.

For the smaller and slightly skittish, the “Haunted Diner” invites kids to crawl through a box maze as they discover disgusting food shaped as fingers, eye balls, brains and squiggly intestines.

“It’s perfect for the kids because it’s not too scary,” Theresa Basore said. “They can walk through there and look at it and touch everything.”

 

 

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