EATON — The Preble County Historical Society (PCHS) held its first two haunted hayrides of the season this past weekend.
Families visited the PCHS “Haunted Farm” on Friday, Oct. 11 and Saturday, Oct. 12 for a ride through the historical property featuring family-friendly scares from volunteers and snacks by a bonfire. Despite the weather on Friday, 70 people attended the hayride. On Saturday, 100 people attended the hayrides.
According to Executive Director Misti Spillman, the event began last year as a way to get people out to the PCHS property and to utilize land the public isn’t normally invited to see.
Last year, the organization started with one weekend. While the event was a huge success with more people attending than expected, it did rain the entire weekend.
PCHS thought to extend the event to two weekends, in hopes of better weather.
“We did this last year for the first time. The first two times we did it, the weather was not that great, but we had a good turnout. It brought a lot of people who have not been here yet and they got interest for other things we do throughout the year, which was part of our goal,” she said.
“It also goes with our Halloween-themed month and bringing in the acreage that is all on Preble County land. We have 255 acres, so it is kind of cool that we are utilizing that land.”
The PCHS Board wanted to utilize the land and trails at the Historical Society, since most of theother events held there don’t use those parts of the historic farm.
While the event is marketed as a “Haunted Hayride,” Spillman believes it is appropriate for families with older children.
“People really loved it [last year], because it wasn’t too scary and was family-friendly,” she said. “I think the haunted hayride is appropriate for children over the age of 10. There are a lot of jump scares, so it might be too intense for the younger kids.”
Spillman extended thanks to Harold Niehaus and all the volunteers from Eaton High School.
There is another chance to attend the PCHS Haunted Hayride before the end of the season.
This upcoming weekend, ghouls and ghosts — and a few clowns — will be lurking about the property. The hayride will run on Friday, Oct. 18 and Saturday, Oct. 19 from 7:30 p.m. until 11:30 p.m., rain or shine. Tickets are $10, include a beverage and snack, and can be purchased the night of the event.
The Preble County Historical Society “Haunted Farm” is located at 7693 Swartsel Rd., in Eaton.
Reach Kelsey Kimbler at 937-683-4061 or on Twitter @KKimbler_RH