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Mahwah Family Turns Quiet Street Into Haunted Halloween Spectacle

Creepy Hollow is on West Ramapo Avenue in Mahwah. Photo Credit: Creepy Hollow
The Ackerson family of Mahwah creates a fun Halloween display every year at their home and encourages families to visit. Photo Credit: Cecilia Levine

MAHWAH, N.J. — The Ackerson Family is ready to give Mahwah the creeps.

Victoria and Bill Ackerson create a Halloween display every year at their house, located at West Ramapo Avenue and Glasgow Terrace.

The tradition started in 2003, and the display includes skeletons, coffins, tombstones, singing pumpkins, cobwebs and creepy contraptions.

“Since we live on a busy street and don't get many trick-or-treaters, we decided to bring a little Halloween magic to our house,” Victoria Ackerson said.

Nearly all of the displays are handmade by the family, including the three children.

“We start putting it up around the last weekend in September, and it takes about a week to put up,’’ Bill said. “Then we need a week to tweak it.”

The Ackersons add to their display every year, taking ideas conceived by the children and creating a prop.

“It’s not gory or scary,’’ Bill said. “Nothing pops out at you. We use lighting and imagination to make people scared, and it works.”

Bill, who works for the Department of Public Works in Ramsey, said the family holds down costs by scouring websites for inexpensive ideas to add to the display.

“I like that the kids help a lot,’’ said Bill, whose family includes a 15-year-old boy and two daughters, ages 10 and 8. “It’s teaching them building skills, and they love doing it.”

In recent years, the Ackersons have been filling a coffin located outside of their driveway with food donations from visitors to go toward "Hunger Is Scary" — a campaign started by Mahwah's Pushie Family.

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