Tuesday, November 4, 2008

Things not everyone knows

about the Davis Graveyard.

Beside creating and installing a display the Davis Graveyard hosts:

The Milwaukie High School Dance Team - they perform a "Thriller" type number in the driveway. Yes, we stole that idea right from Rocky Pointe, thank you Cydney, I hope you are enjoying your retirement :) We raise money for them through donations and events.

Community Open House - we invite people to spend the afternoon in the yard asking us questions and looking at yard from behind the scenes. We have a crew that comes in and helps us handle the crowds. The dance team performs, takes donations, and sells treats to raise money.

Fundraiser - Bane of the whole season for me! After two years, I cannot seem to get this one off the ground. :( Lot of work and money for not a lot of return. We made several props and tombstones - even got a friend to make a custom tombstone. We did get a few donations and some good deals on supplies, but if we did not pay for everything ourselves for the event, it would make no money. In fact it costs me more to have the event than we raise, or very close. Not likely to return next year. At least that is what I am saying today.

Raffle(s) - We make a prop, this year, a large monk figure that is auctioned for charity. We make it, take it to the venue, and then deliver it to the winner. We also sell tickets at our location too. This year we purchased a Bucky (human sized) skeleton, aged it and sold tickets for the dance team at our events.

Make Props for The Bishop Cemetery - We over extended ourselves this year in helping our fellow haunters (we trade with them), but their yard looked fantastic. We took some of the props we made for the book and expanded from there....a bit too much. I don't think I will do that many props for someone else again, unless we scale down our own haunt :)

Coffin Cruiser Hearse Club - This year we partnered with the local hearse club to visit our events. This is a great opportunity to work with like minded people in our community. They are the greatest group to work with. (Special thanks to Dan for making all the custom tombstones!)

TV, print and radio - I send out about four press releases during the season to let people know about the graveyard and our fundraising efforts. Jeff and I take turns at the PR thing. Husband works at home and handles the bulk of the contacts.

Hosting on the weekends - we run the display on Friday, Saturday and Sunday. We are out there each night making sure everything is running and answering questions - along with selling raffle tickets for the dance team.

Halloween Party - Host our own party - FUN!!!

Close the Street - for Halloween we close the street with the generous help of the Milwaukie Police Department. The cadets come help so that they can get the hours they need for their training, we get safety for the thousands of visitors/trick-or-treaters. Win, win for all of us!

When I started typing this I thought I would be far more impressed with the scope. Hummmm, guess that when it is happening, it seems like more work than I have listed :) I am just a "sissy" as my friend has said.

And . . . .this year, we held a tombstone workshop, helped host and presented at FrightFest Northwest, attended and presented at Hauntcon, worked with a local film maker for a graveyard scene, received a grant from The Clackamas County Cultural Trust, attended and presented at the Rocky Mountain Haunters convention, sponsored the Haunt X Awards and worked on our book.

It takes Husband and I and about 12 family/friends (that are family at this point) to make this happen. I would be dead half way through without them :)

I wouldn't have it any other way! Happy Halloween!

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