Monday, October 31, 2011

Thanks to all for a great Halloween

It was another great Halloween season at Spirits on Sproat...thanks especially to those who helped make our neighborhood attraction so special. Hats off to our 2011 scare team, including Larry, Mark, Kyle, and Andrew.

We hope everyone enjoyed their visits to Spirits on Sproat, and we look forward to boo-ing it--we mean doing it--again next year. Happy Halloween to one and all!

Spook spotlight: Michael Myers 2.0

Yes, it's true that we featured Michael Myers in an earlier post this month. But we swear, he must have a twin brother--one with more scars on his face and steam in his stride. Truth is, the original Mr. Myers stands as still as a statue on our lawn, although he's always poised to strike when you least suspect.

This doppelganger (pictured) is more like the Energizer Bunny--he keeps stalking and stalking and stalking...Visit our display on Halloween and chances are you'll have a close encounter with this knife-wielding psycho. But be forewarned: he likes to pop out from behind you.

We never hear Mikey talk, but I once heard him exclaim as he dove out of sight--"Happy Halloween to all, and to all, a good night!"

Thanks for making it one of our best seasons ever. Good luck trick or treating, and, as always, pleasant dreams!

Sunday, October 30, 2011

View the official Spirits on Sproat 2011 video

The long-awaited official video for the 2011 Spirits on Sproat yard display is now available for viewing. Click on the video below to watch...and Happy Halloween!

Spook spotlight: Meet the ambiguous vampire sidekick

Here's a guy who blends in with the crowd--literally. We've never caught his proper name, because he seems to blow with the wind and disappear when you least expect. He oozes Halloween attitude, but frankly he's a real pain in the neck. Still, we'll have to properly christen him someday--maybe after we drive a stake through his heart. If you've got any good suggestions for a moniker for this monstrosity, feel free to pass them along.

We'd give you more of a lowdown on this undead dude, with talking points to spare, but he prefers to keep a low profile.

Saturday, October 29, 2011

Spook spotlight: Meet Jigsaw

He's a puzzle wrapped in an enigma shrouded in mystery--he's none other than Jigsaw, the impossibly cute, red bow tie-wearing diminutive demon from the Saw movies who sure gets a lot of attention for very little screen time. Although at Spirits on Sproat, he gets plenty of screen time, as in window screen, which he peeks out from to leer at hapless visitors who don't suspect they're being watched.
  • Little-known fact: The tricycle is just a prop; he actually rides a Harley to and from work
  • Weapon of choice: Those hypnotizing red rings on his cheeks
  • Secret shame: Is in love with Miss Piggy from the Muppets

Friday, October 28, 2011

Local band Monk 9 to perform at Spirits on Sproat on Oct. 31

Acclaimed Oak Lawn-based band Monk 9 is scheduled to play a 20- to 30-minute outdoor set of original and cover songs at the Spirits on Sproat Halloween yard display on Monday, Oct. 31, Halloween, at 7:30 p.m. (weather permitting).

Come see our display and enjoy an exciting live performance by one of the area's best local acts--a two-piece costumed band that definitely knows how to rock. Monk 9 has been featured on "America's Got Talent" and is making a big name in the south suburbs.

For more info on Monk 9, visit

Spook spotlight: Meet Chucky

Some kids like to cuddle up at night to a teddy bear or a Tickle Me Elmo. But one urchin you won't want to get tucked in with you at night is this Cabbage Patch Doll of the damned. Chucky got only two settings above his battery compartment: Evil and Evil-er (relax, grammarians: little kids don't even know the latter is not a word).
  • Secret shame: Has made millions in merchandising royalties, but still sleeps in a cardboard box
  • Little known fact: Once lost a fight to Mini Me
  • Voted in high school: Are you kidding? This half-pint never made it past preschool.

Thursday, October 27, 2011

Spirits on Sproat featured on newspaper front page

Your favorite neighborhood Halloween yard display was spotlighted on the front page of the Oct. 28 edition of the Southwest Suburban News-Herald newspaper.

To view a scan of this page, click on the image below.

Spook spotlight: Meet Resurrection Mary

Legend has it that there's a hitchhiking ghost that haunts the south side. Actually, it's no legend--it's fact, and she's narrowed her territory exclusively to Sproat Avenue. Meet Resurrection Mary, the jilted corpse bride who never got to say "I do," so instead her motto is "I boo." She's got eyes as bright as the flames of hell and a dress to die for. Stare at her too long and you're bound to get a stiff neck (she likes to float around up near the trees).
  • Favorite haunts: Archer Avenue, The Willowbrook Ballroom, your car’s passenger seat (eventually)
  • Nickname: The hitch-hiking hussy
  • Favorite movies: “Runaway Bride,” “My Big Fat Cemetery Wedding”

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Spook spotlight: Meet Pinhead

Some guys like spike haircuts, but this character takes his personal grooming to a whole new extreme. Introducing Pinhead, the original Hellraiser himself, who in a weird way resembles a mime-faced Captain Picard from Star Trek who's developed a serious case of needle acne.

Here's everything you've always wanted to know about Pinhead but were afraid to ask:
  • Little-known fact: Broke up with his girlfriend because her pierced tongue freaked him out
  • Secret shame: It takes him 3 hours to shave in the morning
  • Pet peeves: People who call him “spikeface,” “porcupine pate” or “needle noggin”
  • Favorite songs: “Raising Hell” by Run-DMC and “Pinhead” by the Ramones

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Spook spotlight: Meet the Hunchback of Notre Dame

Quasimodo, as he's affectionately referred to in his native France, isn't exactly Brad Pitt reborn. But what he lacks in the looks department, he makes up for in spades in the brawn department. Often mistaken for Igor, whose hump is just as obnoxious, the Hunchback of Notre Dame has the hots for a girl named Esmerelda, but he's as cold blooded a creep as you'd ever want to meet.

Get to know this humpty dumpty and you'll quickly learn the following:
  • Nickname: People Magazine’s Sexiest Man Alive
  • Voted in high school: Most likely to have a career as a Walmart greeter
  • Dirty little secret: Roots for the Trojans when they play the Fighting Irish

Monday, October 24, 2011

Spook spotlight: Meet the Headless Horseman

Spooky Hollow may be his old stomping grounds, but the horrible headless Hessian of author Washington Irving's imagination has established a new address the past few years: the front lawn of our house! Dare to walk past on a dark October night and you'll undoubtedly see him in all his tomahawk-wielding glory. Be careful not to trip on any wayward decapitated heads as you walk past his shadow, however.

Here's more facts about the Headless Horseman:
  • Sick of hearing his wife say: If your head was screwed on, you’d lose that, too
  • Secret shame: Lives in Tarrytown because he can’t afford Sleepy Hollow taxes
  • Little known fact: Once bowled a perfect game using Ichabod’s head as a ball

Sunday, October 23, 2011

Monk 9 performance to be rescheduled

The Monk 9 performance scheduled for Oct. 22 will be rescheduled for sometime this weekend; stay tuned to this Web site for a definitive date and time.

Spook spotlight: Meet Regan

Ronald Reagan may have ruled the 80s, but Regan the possessed girl ruled everyone's nightmares in the 70s. Just take a look at her twisted visage: that's a face powerful enough to curdle milk. She's also got a head that can do a 360 and a penchant for pea soup (don't get too close, lest you tempt a case of projectile vomiting!).
  • Betcha didn't know that these secret tidbits about Regan:
  • Diagnosed with: Split pea personality disorder
  • Dirty little secret: Can outswear a drunken sailor
  • Voted in high school: Most head-turning knockout babe
  • Friends wish she’d try: Clearasil

Saturday, October 22, 2011

Spook spotlight: Meet Hannibal Lecter

Let's face it: The specter of Lecter is one horrible sight. Consider that this cad is capable of removing a man's face and wearing it on his own--and then eating it for dessert if he so pleases. Such is the life of a madman cannibal. Hannibal the horrible has been hanging around Leatherface's refrigerator for longer than we can remember (actually, since 2008, but who's counting). If you're smart, you won't trade any recipes with him or ask to borrow any sugar.

What's not to love about Mr. Lecter? Ponder this:
  • Dirty little secret: Likes asking people to pull his finger after he’s eaten liver and fava beans
  • Little known fact: Prefers Members Only straight jackets
  • Biggest pet peeve: Vegetarian cookbooks

Friday, October 21, 2011

Spook spotlight: Meet Stabby Stu and Wizzo the Clown

 Smell that smell? It's not stale peanuts, elephant dung, or sickly sweet cotton candy in the air. It's the smell of the circus of the damned--and the ringleaders are none other than Stabby Stu and Wizzo the Clown, two goofballs who won't kill you with their twisted smiles, but with their Ginsu knives instead.

Best to steer clear of these barbaric bozos. Here's what the FBI has learned about this dastardly duo so far:
  • Also known as: The Insane Clown Poseurs
  • Favorite catch phrase: “You know what they say about guys with big feet…”
  • Personal heroes: Krusty, George W. Bush, Joakim Noah

Thursday, October 20, 2011

Spook spotlight: Meet the Phantom of the Opera

When he's not busy singing in the shower to an aria from "La Traviata," this denizen of the lower depths enjoys offing Lyric Opera season ticket holder in fiendishly creative ways. Like the time the Phantom perched in the rafters and festooned a fat man in the first row with a whale harpoon. Or when he weakened the stage floorboards so that Madame Butterfly's understudy would fall to her doom.

Eric the opera ghost may be flush with pride over his cultured pedigree and ear for music, but there are some things he would be embarrassed for you to know about, such as:
  • Secret shame: Owns Yanni’s first five albums
  • Once saw: Pavarotti consume two live pigs and a calf after performing in Madame Butterfly
  • Little known fact: Gets three Botox facial injections a week

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Spook spotlight: Meet Poltergeist Pete

Ever been annoyed by a guy who just won't stop hanging around? Poltergeist Pete puts the "noose" in "nuisance" and is the ultimate pest above the rest. Why? Just get a glimpse at that face, for starters. It's enough to strip the finish off your car's clearcoat. And those claws, boy is he overdue for a manicure. Still, this fearsome fiend is not without his charms. He can dunk better than any center in the game today, and his nail clippings make great sun visors.

Here's more about ole' Pete:
  • Nickname: “Coulter-geist,” for his uncanny resemblance to toxic political pundit Ann Coulter
  • Also known as: Tinkerbell from hell
  • Little known fact: Despite the tatters, never leaves the house without a clean pair of underwear

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Spook spotlight: Meet Mr. Hyde

Look hard after October 31 and you'll find neither Hyde nor hair of any evidence that this gruesome ghoul ever lived on our lawn. But during most of October, Mr. Hyde (also known as Dr. Jekyll when he doesn't wake up on the wrong side of the coffin) carves out a nice niche on the old Kentucky bluegrass, just as he can carve out a nice niche in your cranium if you're naive enough to get close.

Here are the top 4 facts on el fright face:
  • Suffers from: Multiple personality disorder, chronic halitosis, cowbell fever
  • Favorite films: Anger Management, Glen or Glenda
  • Personal heroes: The incredible Hulk, O.J. Simpson, Axl Rose
  • Fault: Overdresses for every occasion

Monday, October 17, 2011

Spook spotlight: Meet Ghostface

Some homeowners hang wreaths above their door to greet seasonal guests. At Spirits on Sproat, we've got a black-hooded homicidal maniac hovering above our door--armed with a butcher knife and ready to strike. Ghostface, as he's known on the street, would love to make your acquaintance some dark and stormy night when you're making Jiffy Pop and talking to your friend on the phone. For that matter, he's free pretty much any night for some quick carving--although he volunteers to read books to the blind on Tuesday evenings, so mark that date off your calendar.

What's not to love about Ghostface? Case in point:
  • Creator: Norwegian painter Edvard Munch and greedy Hollywood executives eager to milk Generation X dry
  • Favorite haunt: Our front porch (since we cut off his legs)
  • Little-known fact: Cheated death and the 15 minutes of fame rule

Sunday, October 16, 2011

Spook spotlight: Meet the Mummy

If you think getting your house T.P.d would be bad news, what if some ancient pharaoh T.P.d your whole body? Such was the fate with this shambling, rambling man. Better known as Imhotep, the mummy may not exactly be Speedy Gonzales quick on his feet, but his 3,000-year-old bad breath alone could knock down a herd of elephants.

Here's the inside scoop on the mumster:
  • Nickname: Lost gauze
  • Voted in high school: Most likely to get wrapped up in an exciting career
  • Dirty little secret: Once lost a race to a wounded snail
  • Little known fact: 3,271 years old and still gets carded when he buys a case of beer

Saturday, October 15, 2011

Spook spotlight: Meet Broom Helga

Which witch is on most people's wish lists of horrible hag they'd least like to meet at Hogwarts or otherwise? Why, it's Broom Helga, of course.

Her "double double toil and trouble" routine can be tiresome at times, but no one else bakes up a better batch of poisoned apples or gingerbread cookies than this grand old dame of doom.
  • Betcha' didn't know these fun facts about Broom Helga:
  • Nickname: Miss October
  • Weapon of choice: Toadstools, eye of Newt Gingrich
  • Dirty little secret: Prefers battery-operated broomsticks
  • Favorite performer: Stevie Nicks
  • Favorite movie: Every Witch Way But Loose

Friday, October 14, 2011

Spooky spotlight: Meet the Creature From the Black Lagoon

There's something fishy going on around here--especially when this guy's close by. The Creature From the Black Lagoon enjoys spinning around in circles in his favorite watering hole--our garbage can (yes, we know: he's got serious issues). He likes to throw water on the theory that he's all washed up by making a big splash in our display every October.

What's not to love about the creature? Consider:
  • Nickname: The Gill-man
  • Dirty little secret: Drinks like a fish
  • Weapon of choice: Hot tuna breath
  • Favorite watering holes: Deja Brew, The Goal Post

Thursday, October 13, 2011

Spook spotlight: Meet the Angel of Death

You can pay a visit to see The Angel of Death, but you definitely don't want him to pay you a visit someday. Wingman to Mrs. Bates and other porch dwellers in the Spirits of Sproat gallery, AoD is into hooded robes (he put a blue Snuggie down on his Santa wish list last year), swinging his scythe around like he owns the place, and keeping a s**t-eating grin on his face at all times.

Fun facts about The Angel of Death:
  • Alias: Grim Reaper, Mr. Snuggles 
  • Favorite haunt: Everywhere you don’t want to be 
  • Secret to his success: Crest Whitening Strips and flossing after every meal

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Spook Spotlight: Meet Whiplash

Here's a creepster who's getting a little long in the tooth (not to mention the arms) and yet smaller in cranium somehow (a witch doctor shrunk his head 215 years ago, and he's been a head case since). Whiplash likes to hover around our front porch where he can remain more incognito. But careful before you cross his path--he's a regular lion tamer with that bullwhip of his.

More about Whiplash:
  • Nickname: Indiana Jones on acid
  • Voted in high school: Most likely to become a dominatrix
  • Suffers from: fallen arches and the “Beetlejuice shrunken head” syndrome

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Spook spotlight: Meet The Wolf Man

If you think the hair on the back of your neck sticks up straight when the moon is full, just imagine how hairy the back of this guy's neck is! This lycanthropic legend cannot be tamed (so don't even try, girls), although he's sometimes seen drinking a pina colada at Trader Vic's and kickin' back. The Wolf Man celebrates his 70th birthday in 2011 (not as a Spirit on Sproat regular, but as a movie icon), so tip your hat in respect to this monster mainstay when you visit our display this year.

More about wolfy:
  • Little known fact: Was a late night radio DJ in the seventies
  • Favorite haunts: The foggy moors of London, Trader Vics
  • Owns stock in: Gillette, Norelco, Alpo

Monday, October 10, 2011

Spook spotlight: Meet Michael Myers

What would our scary season be without the man who put the "howl" in Halloween? While he bears a striking resemblance to an albino-ized William Shatner (look it up, you doubters), his cold, expressionless face sends chills up the spines of teenage babysitters everywhere.

He's not an easy creep to interview, but after some interrogation, here's what we've learned about him:
  • Most famous movie role: The voice of “Shrek”
  • Weapon of choice: The Ginsu Cleave-O-Matic
  • Who’s on his hit list: Hollywood hacks who attempt lame remakes of classic films

Sunday, October 9, 2011

Spook spotlight: Meet Mrs. Bates

Never mistaken for Mrs. Butterworth, this grand old granny of monsterdom has occupied a prized place on our front porch for many a full harvest moon. For all you young'ns out there, Mrs. Bates is old school horror, as in the lady in the window in the greatest scary movie of all time, Alfred Hitchcock's "Psycho." If you haven't yet seen this film, what are you waiting for?

Here are some little-known facts about Mrs. Bates:
  • Alias: The Silver Fox
  • Favorite haunts: The fruit cellar and Gennaro’s Drugs on senior discount Tuesdays
  • Her one weakness: Living vicariously through her son

Saturday, October 8, 2011

Spook spotlight: Meet The Green Ghoul

Believe it or not, this green fiend is the very first monster to grace the lawn display of Spirits on Sproat several years ago. He's endured a few hip surgeries, facelifts, and tummy tucks since then, but he's still going strong, making the other ghouls green with envy.

The Green Ghoul is one of the tallest and most fascinating characters in our gallery. We bet you didn't know the following about him:
  • Alias: Hell Toupee
  • Favorite haunts: Ireland, Greenland and the downstate nuclear power plant
  • Voted in high school: Most likely to be mistaken for Eddie, the Iron Maiden mascot

Friday, October 7, 2011

Spook Spotlight: Meet The Beast

"Twas beauty killed the beast," it was famously remarked at the conclusion of "King Kong." But not this beast. He's no sucker for a pretty face, unless that face is about to scream in horror. Then he's in all his glory. Don't kid yourself: This isn't some G-rated bad guy you're likely to see on Nickelodeon. He's hairy, hungry, and helplessly addicted to terrifying the living daylights out of you.

Here's the dossier on this demented devil:
  • Creator: Some guy in his garage with way too much time on his hands
  • Often mistaken for: An animated character in a Disney movie
  • Biggest pet peeve: Mistaking him for an animated character in a Disney movie

Thursday, October 6, 2011

Spook spotlight: Meet The Soul Collector

They say that in life, it's important to be yourself. But it's hard to do exactly that when a menace as mortifying as The Soul Collector is hanging around. He's known for enslaving the spirits of hapless victims across the globe. Luckily for you, he's kept barricaded behind a chained fence on our lawn and too busy working for El Diablo to bother with you. But don't get on his bad side. Consider what we know about this gory goon:
  • Employers: Beelzebub, Halliburton, Karl Rove
  • Favorite haunt: Hades and the Department of Motor Vehicles
  • Weapons of choice: The O.J. Simpson legal defense team

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

Spook spotlight: Meet Freddy Krueger

For our next Spirits on Sproat profile, some heavy caffeine is required. That's because you want to stay as awake and alert as possible, lest the black knight of nightmares invade your dreams. Yes, we're talking about the one and only Freddy Krueger. Elm Street may not be anywhere near Sproat Avenue, but you can be sure this fedorah-topped, scalded-faced, striped-sweater-wearing weirdo will be close at hand when you visit our home haunt.

Here are a few fast facts about Freddie:
  • Alias: Dreamsickle
  • Favorite haunt: Shopping mall multiplex theaters in the 1980s
  • Favorite movie: Freddy Got Fingered
  • Buys sweaters at: Value City

Tuesday, October 4, 2011

Spook spotlight: Meet Leatherface

He may not wear a Members Only jacket, but his weathered leather visage certainly ups his coolness quotient. We're talking about the one and only Leatherface here, the massacre man himself, who has made quite a noise here at Spirits on Sproat since his debut a few years ago.

Watch out for his twin brother this year--he gets a kick out of popping out of the shadows and introducing you to his chainsaw.

Here's the 411 on Leatherface, for the uninitiated:
  • Nickname: Buzz
  • Little known fact: Uses chainsaw to craft ice sculptures at weddings
  • Favorite recipe: Gallbladder goulash, spinal cord soufflĂ©

Monday, October 3, 2011

Spook spotlight: Meet Jason Vorhees

Today may not be Friday the 13th, but any day is a good day to stay far, far away from this denizen of the damned. His official name is Jason Vorhees, but he's better known as your worst nightmare (all apologies to Mr. nightmare himself Freddy Krueger). Jason likes to stake out a spot on our lawn and show off his machete and tattered clothes all October long. He's a hard guy to get to know, but here's what we learned about him:
  • Nickname: Die Hard
  • Favorite haunts: Crystal Lake sleepaway camp
  • Creator: Greedy Hollywood execs looking to cash in on the slasher film bandwagon
  • Voted in high school: Most likely to get a head

Sunday, October 2, 2011

Spook spotlight: Meet Mr. and Mrs. Frankenstein

Here's a popular scare pair you wouldn't want to meet on a dark street: Frankie and his bride. They've been hanging around Spirits on Sproat for so long, they've become permanent October fixtures.

In fact, the Frankenstein monster (and that IS his proper name; remember that the name "Frankenstein" in the book and movies refers to his mad scientist creator) is one of the very first monsters ever created for our Halloween yard display.

Here are a few quick facts we bet you didn't know about these lovebirds:
•    Beverage of choice: Jolt Cola
•    Most quoted phrase: “A stitch in time saves nine.”
•    Little known fact: Served as portable generators during town’s 12-day power outage in 1974

Saturday, October 1, 2011

Spook spotlight: Meet the Count

Throughout the month of October, we've decided to spotlight a different horror character featured in the Spirits on Sproat: Gallery of the Dead yard display. It's your way of getting better acquainted with our crew of ghouls, our menagerie of monsters, and our cadre of creatures.

These up-front-and-personal profiles provide a rare but in-depth look at some downright classic horror icons. Each has his or her own unique personality and style.

Case in point: Meet Count Dracula. He practically bleeds charisma. Consider his character traits:
  • Nicknames:Vlad the Impaler; Nosferatu; a pain in the neck
  • Voted in high school: Most likely to suck-seed in business
  • Least favorite restaurant: Stake n’ Shake 
  • Once sued: Batman and Count Chocula for copyright infringement