The first year they decided to go all-out for Halloween, the Turners enclosed their front porch in black fabric. To get candy, kids had to open a curtain into the dark porch, where Marcus Turner sat perfectly still in a rocking chair.
“You could hear the kids say, ‘I’m not going in. You go in,’” said Carmel Turner. “And then as soon as (her husband) moved, they took off so fast they didn’t even touch a step on the way out.”
Marcus Turner then would come out of the black room, show the kids he wasn’t really a boogeyman and make sure they got candy.
Now, the Turners each year try to top the previous year’s scare factor, though they try to avoid the really gory frights. They’ve added creatures in the yard, spooky lighting and pneumatic devices. This year, trick-or-treaters will trip a laser device that will make something jump out at them. Don’t want to give away more than that and spoil the spook.
The scary stuff fills the front yard, and about 90 percent of it is homemade. Marcus is handy with tools; Carmel is the set designer. Their handiwork will be on display Halloween night at 15 Caedmons Walk in Irmo.
They expect a crowd.
“Every year, we get more and more trick-or-treaters,” Carmel said. “But sometimes the kids are scared and make their parents come up and get the candy.”