In the heart of Murrayville, resident Barry Brinkworth pointed to the gigantic 300 pound furry arachnid perched atop a haunted house in his front yard.
“People all over know us as the spider house,” he grinned.
Brinkworth remembered the day he and his wife Tammy hoisted the beast in position a couple years back.
“We live across from a senior’s centre and Tammy was holding the slack with a rope while I was underneath the spider trying to push it into position,” Brinkworth recalled.
“She said ‘don’t turn around, but you should know we have an audience.’ Sure enough, there were about fifteen people watching from their balconies. As soon as that thing fell into place, they all clapped and cheered.”
The spider hasn’t moved, living out in the Brinkworth’s yard all year round where remnants of their haunted house keep it company.
When October roles around, their monstrous eight-legged pet becomes part of a yearly Halloween attraction – “Brinkworth Dungeon’s Mansion of Monsters.”
The fall attraction started when Barry and Tammy threw a party 19 years ago; the couple went all out for their friends with decorations including a giant homemade Frankenstein.
When the set-up spread to their front yard, Barry was astonished to find a line-up of people marvelling from across the block – everything evolved from there.
“I’ve always fascinated by wax museums – I’m a horror nut and love monster movies,” Barry said.
His background in the Brinkworth family business as a model engineer lent itself perfectly to the spooky set-up, with Barry’s creative sculpting talents coming into play.
The Brinkworth’s spent 13 years expanding their dungeon in Richmond before moving to Langley and continuing the tradition for, now, another six.
“5,000 square feet seems to be magic number,” Barry said in regards to the display, which takes about two months to put up. “If less, you don’t seem to get the same reaction. And we just added another 1,600 square feet to it. This year, there’s a Silent Hill asylum and Revenge of the Mummy room.”
Greeting guests this year are giant metallic torches used as props in the last Pirates of the Caribbean movie, a theme Barry said their dungeon might adopt more-so in the future.
Open now until Nov. 2, Barry will now be awaiting guests looking for a fun scare with a Jason mask and machete. There is admission to tour the dungeon, but proceeds go to charity.
“We spend thousands of bucks of materials, so entry fees are used to cover the building costs, and whatever is left over gets donated to donated to JRFM’s Basics for Babies,” Barry explained. “Non-perishable food items for the Langley Food Bank are accepted too.”
Located at 22260 48 Ave, “Nights for the Squeamish” are Monday to Thursday 7 to 10 p.m. and Friday and Saturday, 6 to 8 p.m. while “Trapped and Terrified Nights” run Fridays and Saturdays 8 to 11 p.m.
Admission is $10 for adults and $5 for kids 10 and under.
“It’s really cool, trick or treating has kind of died out with parents worried about their kids safety, so I really enjoy the fact that we’re giving people somewhere they can go,” Barry said.
For more information, people can visit www.brinkworthdungeon.com.
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