Becker County Museum to host haunted house at the fairgrounds next month

The Haunted House Tours will raise money for museum's new building.

Museum haunted house.jpg

The Becker County Museum is in the midst of re-launching a public campaign to raise funds for its new building — and in honor of Halloween, the museum staff decided to make their first fundraising event of the fall into a haunted house tour.

Co-hosted by Midwest Paranormal Files — a local paranormal investigation group that has nine years of experience in staging haunted house events around the lakes area — the Haunted House Tours will be held inside the 4-H exhibit building at the Becker County Fairgrounds this year.

"We needed more space," says museum director Becky Mitchell, due to physical distancing requirements imposed by the Minnesota Department of Health to prevent the spread of COVID-19 (novel coronavirus). Those requirements will be strictly adhered to during the tours, which will be limited to groups of four people or fewer going through the entrance at the same time. In addition, masks will be required at all times — as in, regular face masks, not the Halloween variety.

The front entrance will also be staffed by a combination of employees and volunteers, Mitchell added, to ensure that the guidelines are followed.

Tours will take place between 7-10 p.m. on consecutive weekends, Oct. 23-24 and Oct. 30-31, which means the last haunted house tour will actually be held on Halloween night.


Because of the relocation, this year's event will be more of a traditional haunted house, rather than a haunted museum fundraiser such as the one they've hosted at the museum building in years past. The participants will be attempting to spook their guests rather than focusing on telling slightly creepy tales with a historic twist.

"It will actually be scary," Mitchell added, which is why museum staff will also be strictly adhering to the requirement that all attendees age 12 and under MUST be accompanied by an adult. "It's geared toward ages 13 and up."

But that doesn't mean the museum intends to ignore the county's younger residents, she said. "We're going to have a Family Day event as well," she said, complete with Halloween-themed crafts, games and even a pumpkin hunt. Details are still being finalized for that event, Mitchell said, including the exact date, time and location.

Though haunted house guests will be required to stay outside while waiting their turn for the tour, Mitchell said they will be providing hot beverages to help them stay warm while they wait.

Tickets are $10 each, and may be purchased by phone at 218-847-2938, or in person at the museum, 714 Summit Ave., Detroit Lakes, during regular operating hours (10 a.m.-4 p.m. Monday through Friday, and Saturdays by appointment).

Donations sought

The museum is still in need of a few items for the haunted house; any donations of the following items, or money to purchase them, would be welcome:

  • Unused plastic sheeting;
  • Unused landscape fabric;
  • Burlap;
  • Long pieces of fabric or sheets;
  • Fish line;
  • Battery-operated tea light candles;
  • Gauze;
  • Toy swords or weapons made of plastic.

Contact the museum at 218-847-2938 for more information on where and how to drop off donations.

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