If you dare, Cedar Grove Fire Department’s Haunted Trail will be open Friday and Saturday nights in October.
The trail is in its fourth year. While the theme changes annually, the goal to scare each and every visitor remains the same.
“We want each year to be scarier than the last,” said Cedar Grove Fire Department Chief Kevin Bivins. “Last year, we offered a Bone Cave Meat Department with carnage everywhere. It was scary. We had many people say they wet themselves out of fear. I think we will have even more of that this year.”
This year’s trail will be headed by Cedar Mine, with individuals descending into what appears to be a mine shaft. Bivins says the mine shaft serves as a source of confusion and what follows will terrify.
“The mine is 208 feet long,” said Bivins. “It’s disorienting. If you survive that, and I’m not saying you will, you will still have to make it through zombies, evil clowns, ghosts, and psychopaths. Just hold onto your glow stick and stay on the path. We can’t ensure your safety if you leave the path.”
Made from repurposed pallets and covered to create a cave-like effect, Cedar Mine was Bivins’ idea.
“I got the idea after seeing what people were making out of pallets,” he said. “They were making furniture and I thought, ‘Why can’t I make a mine shaft for this year’s haunted trail out of some pallets?’ We built it downhill so you get the feeling you are descending. It’s got twists and turns and it appears to be slanting, just like a real mine shaft.”
Other changes this year include the length of the trail and the cost for admission. While the trail is approximately one mile long, the decision has been made to charge $5 per person. In years past, the haunted trail was donation only.
“Charging an admission wasn’t something we wanted to do,” said Bivins. “What we found when it was donation only was some people were going through the trail again and again and again. The bad part was they were taking away the fun other people were having by telling them what was going to happen next. We are hoping a minimal charge will prevent that from happening.”
Those in search of a discount can visit Highway 30 Market. Prior to the event, tickets can be purchased there for $4.
The Haunted Trail is a family-oriented event. Foul language is discouraged. Weapons, drugs and alcohol are prohibited.
As always, prohibited are the use of flashlights and cellphones. One glow stick will be given to the leader of each group. Additional glow sticks can be purchased before the tour for $1 at the concession stand, which will have a variety of snacks and drinks available.
The scares will be offered on Friday and Saturday nights from Oct. 3 through Oct. 31 from dark until 11 p.m. on Miller Farm in Bone Cave. It’s located at 1876 Bone Cave Mountain Road in Rock Island. To get there, take Highway 70S toward Sparta. Turn right at The Landing Shell Station, then follow the signs.
Enter at your own risk. The attraction is meant to scare, startle and surprise. For children, parental discretion is advised. Because the trail is outdoors, visitors are encouraged to dress appropriately.
For more information, call 686-1401.