By Christine Keeling
Workers were preparing this week for a ninth year of scares at Craig Beach.
The Haunted Trail in Lake Milton State Park will kick off tonight from 7 to 10:30 and will run the last three Fridays and Saturdays in October, weather permitting.
Those willing to brave the winding walk will be guided through several scenes and face a variety of monsters.
If the Tunnels of Terror or Gatekeeper prove to be too much, a tent filled with games, prizes and volunteers will keep the faint-of-heart occupied while the rest of the group makes the journey.
“We work on it year-round,” said Katie Moore, the park’s Ohio Department of Natural Resources naturalist. “It’s not just a job or fundraiser but a time to tap into our creativity.”
The haunted trail is staffed by the Craig Beach Volunteer Fire Department and is hosted by a nonprofit group, Keep Lake Milton Beautiful. Money raised goes to park projects, such as maintaining and expanding trails.
The cost is $6 for adults, $3 for children. Children 5 and under are admitted free. The trails are paved and handicap accessible.
“Eventually, we want to have a trail all around the lake,” said Barb Neill, manager of Lake Milton State Park.
Planners began meeting once a week in late August, and setup at the park takes about a week. The group tries to change up the scenes each year so return visitors will experience something new.
Lori Brown has been a volunteer for the trail for four years and looks forward to the event.
“I like watching people get scared,” said Brown. “And I like to scare them.”
Concessions such as hot chocolate will be available to warm up the bones, but Neill also suggested people dress for the weather.