Justin Davis, of Plymouth, brings community together with Scare Chamber
PLYMOUTH — Justin Davis’ penchant for holiday decorating has turned into a Halloween attraction for his whole community and his frightfully fun spectacle grows every year.
The Scare Chamber opens from 7 to 10 p.m. Oct. 29 through Oct. 31 at 111 Vine St. The attraction is open to the public and free for thrill seekers on their first time through. Additional tours cost $1. The attraction offers a scary version for those who dare and a tamer version for young children, or adults, not interested in being spooked.
Davis, a 20-year-old music education student at Marywood University, is the musical director of the Wyoming Valley Barbershop Harmony Chorus and the proprietor of Balloons by JustinCredible, and he still finds time to design and build an impressive Halloween display each year.
The attraction, which started as Davis’ hobby, is in its seventh year being open to the public.
“We’ve been decorating the house for as long as I can remember,” Davis said of him and his family. “It started in the driveway. I wanted to bring it inside, and that started as one room and then a maze of three or four rooms. Now it takes up the whole bottom floor of my house and some of the outside, and it draws a couple hundred people every year.”
Davis said his motivation in opening his doors to the public each Halloween is a desire to offer a wholesome, safe and affordable source of entertainment for area families.
“You hear way too many bad stories in the media about places like Wilkes-Barre and Plymouth,” Davis said. “The goal is to provide a positive sense of Halloween to Plymouth and surrounding communities.”
Donna Hillard-Wynn, of Edwardsville, brings her two sons and her niece to the Scare Chamber yearly.
“I think what he does is great,” Hillard-Wynn said of Davis. “He does it on his own time. He doesn’t charge anything. He’s such a great person for doing that. A lot of people who can’t afford (other attractions), they have this to do. My kids love it.”
Maintaining and growing the Scare Chamber is a financial responsibility that Davis has, in the past, taken on himself. This year, since his earning has taken a back seat to his education, he asked for help.
“We started taking donations, and we got about $300, which is a little less than half of what it cost this year,” Davis said. “It’s a personal investment, but it’s so worth it because the kids love it and the parents love it too.”
This year’s Scare Chamber features a “hugs and high-fives” option for the youngest of participants. Children who opt for the no-scare version get a glow stick to denote their status.
“The actors will scare anyone in the group unless they’re a small kid, and they’ll be friendly to them,” Davis said.
Davis estimates the display features 10 actors on Oct. 29 and 30 and about 20 on Halloween night. Many, Davis said, are also associated with Gravestone Manor, a popular attraction in Plains Township where Davis also volunteers.
Madison Matello, 17, of Larksville, volunteers at both attractions on a yearly basis. Davis got her involved with Gravestone Manor, which gives its proceeds to United Way of Wyoming Valley.
“It’s wonderful being involved in both,” Matello said of the two good causes. “For the whole month of October, I’m surrounded by these wonderful people who are coming together for their communities. Justin’s attraction is really about bringing the community together, because parents in Plymouth have concerns about taking their children tick-or-treating in the area. People have so much fun there, including the workers. It’s fun and safe and a really good experience overall.”
Reach Matt Mattei at 570-991-6651 or Twitter @TLArts
IF YOU GO
What: The Scare Chamber
Where: 111 Vine St., Plymouth
When: 7 to 10 p.m. Oct. 29 through 31
Additional information: The Scare Chamber is open to the public and free on the first walk-through. For those who wish to go through the attraction multiple times, there is a $1 charge for additional passes.