The Haunted Garage was one of largest Halloween displays in the area.
Updated September 28, 2016
A statement was posted on the Haunted Garage facebook page today, which read as follows:
"Due to untimely death of Keith Allen, The Haunted Garage will no longer be open throughout October. But rest assured the legend continues:
Foy’s Halloween Stores in Fairborn, Ohio has purchased many of the items in our collection. This year and from now on, items from The Haunted Garage will live on in the Foy’s Museum as a memorial to Keith’s legend. Foy's has also agreed to continue to make donations to the Multiple Sclerosis Society in Keith’s name! We encourage you to visit Foy’s and revisit your memories of Keith and The Haunted Garage.
We are planning an open house/memorial for Keith at The Haunted Garage, 7373 Bard Rd., Tipp City, Ohio. Items we have kept will be on display. The dates are Thursday - Saturday, October 13 - 15, 2016. Hours are 7:00 pm - 9:00 pm. These are the only dates and times The Haunted Garage will be open!
Stop by and share stories and memories of Keith and The Haunted Garage. Who knows? You may have the opportunity to purchase an item from The Haunted Garage's collection!"
The following is a review of The Haunted Garage written by Mike Woody in 2015
It’s not uncommon for the inside of people’s garages to be frightening, but Keith Allen and Charlene Werts takes it to a whole other level. A garage without any unused tools and other packed away items sounds perfect, except for when it’s filled with a cast of ghosts, goblins and other ghouls, then it’s downright scary.
A couple years ago, Allen built on to the garage as the 1,000 feet of space wasn’t big enough to house his collection, which consists of dozens of life-sized creatures; including a machete wielding Jason Vorhees, Frankenstein, and Michael Myers. Over 22 items are electronically controlled by Allen to move, speak, or make a noise at the most unsuspecting of times. There’s also a street legal casket car dragster and new this year is an electric chair, that’s sure to sizzle.
Amongst all the mayhem is Allen himself, who dons a mask in a challenge for the visitors to find him. “You never knew where I’ll be or what I’ll be wearing,” he said.
Halloween has always been a beloved holiday for Allen. He’s been collecting items for almost 60 years and still has everything he’s ever bought. For his entire life Allen has found pleasure from scaring people. “On wash day I used to put a rubber centipede in the pocket of my jeans then hide around the corner to see my mother scream when she found it,” said Allen.
The joy Allen receives from scaring the visitors is why he works year round in continuing to improve the Haunted Garage. He wants everyone to be able to enjoy the frightful thrills of Halloween. To welcome everyone, Allen charges no admission. He is bothered by the prices of haunted houses, plus the fee to park. He gets visits from a number of Boy Scout Troops, Girl Scout Troops, youth groups and other organizations who come at least once every year. “There’s a lot of groups that can’t afford to go to the professional haunted houses. Here they get a nice outing for all ages,” he said.
Donations are accepted, not required, and all proceeds goes towards the Multiple Sclerosis Society, for which Werts is a devoted volunteer. The disease is close to their hearts as Werts’ mother passed away from the disease after years of suffering from it.
Allen and Werts used to just host a Halloween party for friends and family, but one year the pizza delivery guy was so impressed with the display that he asked to later bring back his wife. He then suggested that more of the public get the opportunity to see everything so the next year Allen moved it into his garage and the crowd of visitors continues to grow each year.
Located at 7373 Bard Lane, just north of the Dayton International Airport, the Haunted Garage is open 6:30 to 10:30 p.m. every Friday, Saturday and Sunday in October. Visitors are also welcome to call 937-677-0121 for off hour showings.
Mike Woody is a life long resident of Dayton, and has a passion for writing, which is good because he doesn't excel at much of anything else, except eating.
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