Kaitlyn Waller, Staff Writer
The Pierre Laclede Honors College hosted its annual tradition of Haunted Honors last Wednesday on Halloween night. It was hosted by the Pierre Laclede Honors College Student Association. Tours began at 8 p.m. and continued until 10 p.m.
The Provincial House was transformed into a scary haunted house by Honors College students who decorated the classrooms and typically unseen portions of the building, such as the basement rooms and the attic, into eerie scenes. Volunteers, who dressed in scary costumes and makeup, haunted the rooms and hallways to scare students.
Students and alumni waited in line in the Honors College basement in the anthropology lab to await their turn. Dan Gerth, associate dean of the Pierre Laclede Honors College, separated participants into rough groups of eight. “One minute!” counted down Ann Torrusio, professor and adviser at the Honors College, as the next group waited at the entrance to the haunted house, a passage leading into the transformed portion of the Honors College.
Groups were met by a tour guide, a nonspooky volunteer, who led them into the haunted college. Participants walked down a dark hallway decorated with streamers. They were then led up the back stairwell into the first haunted room titled “Cora’s Kitchen” where the tour guide read a story of people who had died from a kitchen fire. Students were unwillingly ushered into the creepy quarters and screamed when workers dressed in pale makeup holding plastic knives creeped up behind them, screaming into their ears. A “burned body” hung from the ceiling.
The terrified group was then led into an abandoned hallway strewn with papers. A tuba player played haunting music in one room while eerie figures slammed doors and screamed for participants to get out.
The next haunted room was a black passageway lined with dummies dressed in black cloaks and white masks. A few of the dummies were actual people and they lunged from the shadows as the group made its way down the tarp passage. Guests witnessed an exorcism before they left. A priest chanted over a bible, attempting to exorcise a worker dressed in black clothes and paint as she stalked toward retreating students.
Tour groups were also led into the Provincial House attic. A “dead woman” laid on the floor and students screamed as four ghouls slinked forward from tarps hanging in the back of the attic. Some of the workers couldn’t help a chuckle as they tried to frighten people they knew.
The next stop was a room haunted with figures in masks. The door was closed and the bloody undead closed in upon the group, asking eerie questions.
After one more scary room, the tour guide led the group down an innocuous hallway hung with multicolored Halloween lights. They were then led into the rainy Honors College courtyard for one last jump scare before leaving Haunted Honors through double doors that led back into the main nonhaunted Honors College entrance hall.
“The jump-scares were fun,” said Kim Byul, junior, secondary education. “Cora’s Kitchen and the attic were my favorite. I really enjoyed the scary stories leading up to the rooms and the group I went with was really funny. It felt like we were in a horror movie.”