Society Hill prepares for Halloween

By Jana E. Pye, Editor,

Tiny Society Hill, known for their grand historical sites of interest, learned that they might have another distinction: home of the best – and scariest – haunted attraction in the Pee Dee.

Members of the Society Hill Town Council listened in rapt attention as Darlington County Fire Chief Kenny Stratton and friend Dr. Steven Skipper known as “S and S Productions” plan on transforming the former St. David’s Academy into “St. David’s Asylum Haunted House” for five weekends, October 2-4, 9-11, 16-18, 22-25, and Oct. 29 – Nov. 1.

The pair have worked at the Lynches River Haunted House before, and decided to band together for this project to raise funds for the Darlington County Fire District’s Santa Fund.

The pair chose to work out the necessary insurance requirements together, rather than making it too confusing with having the responsibility fall on the Fire District.

“We will share all our profits with the Santa’s Fund,” explained Stratton. “This is just an easier way for us to do that.”

The pair promises that they will insure that all of the attraction-although scary-will not be in any way “Satanic or with anti-Christ themes” something that Dr. Skipper stressed. “We bring that up because we have been asked that,” said Skipper. “I promise you’ll be scared, but it’s something that my own wife and my children are helping with, too, and none of us would ever want to promote something like that.”

Council member Debra Harrell expressed surprise that they were holding the haunted house on Sundays; the pair explained that many church youth groups bring their kids to haunted houses as part of their Sunday meetings, so they were going to be hosting those groups along with the general public.

The event will take place on Fridays and Saturdays from 7 p.m. to midnight, and on Thursdays and Sundays from 7 p.m. to 9 p.m.

Special considerations will be made to insure that the noise level is kept to a fair level for nearby residents.

“We plan to offer free food vouchers for the neighbors that live nearby,” said Stratton. “We want everyone to feel that they are a part of this, and welcome everyone to stop by and help volunteer.”

The Darlington County Sheriff’s Office has already pledged their support in helping patrol the area during the event, and council member Michelle Steen said that the rescue squad has been hard at work as volunteers.

In addition to the haunted house attraction, a separate non-scary Halloween Carnival is planned for younger children at the ball field. Plans to host the churches of Society Hill’s Trunk or Treat were discussed, and Stratton and Skipper both expressed a desire to help with that if the churches would like to participate in that.

Find more details at their website, and on Facebook, StDavidsAsylum.

In other matters, Mayor Tommy Bradshaw share dthat the Depot Committee will be accepting a donation from Duke Energy (see story on page …) and that the town’s financial report is finally seeing gains after a long drought.

As no other community members filed for the council seats held by incumbents Deborah Harrelll and Michelle Steen but themselves, there will be no need for a council race in Society Hill.

The next council meeting will be held October 13 at 6:30 p.m.

Author: Duane Childers

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