Evelyn Greter has seen the fear in the eyes, heard the tremble in the voices when young trick-or-treaters alert her to what's lurking in the upper story of her St. Elmo home.
"I've been pulled off the porch and out to the front yard several times by kids to warn me of the 'undead' wandering around upstairs," she says.
There are no actual zombies, she claims. Merely a projector filling the windows with their creepy silhouettes.
It's all part of the fun for Greter and her husband, Mark, who have decorated their digs for Halloween the past four years, as long as they've lived in St. Elmo.
"We moved here from abroad where there's no trick-or-treating, and so we're excited every year to go all out," she says.
According to the National Retail Federation, Americans will spend an estimated $8.8 billion on Halloween this year, including $2.7 billion on decorations. About half of those surveyed (49%) say they plan to decorate their home or yard.
At the Greter home, the porch is encased in cobwebs, and spiders dangle at menacing heights. Orange lights cast an eerie pall over each candy transaction.
A ghost looms over a cluster of graves in the front yard. A broom and witch's hat in the midst of the boneyard indicate there may be other spirits prowling in the fog.
"I love the look of it in the dark with the fog machine and the lights," Greter says. "We add a little bit ever year and try and keep the daytime look fun for the young kids and the nighttime look a little spookier for the older kids."
Contact Lisa Denton at email@example.com or 423-757-6281.
Other spooky houses to visit in Chattanooga:
3621 Glen Oaks Drive in East Ridge
4420 Norcross Road in Hixson
1208 Dartmouth Street in North Chattanooga
773 Mauldeth Road near Lupton City
3770 Cuscowilla Drive near Lupton City
4617 Alabama Ave. in St. Elmo (Greter home)
1507 Chamberlain Ave