Herald photo/Steven Doll - The layout for the Central Texas College haunted house sits on a table as the construction of the house is under way Oct. 21. - -

By Mason W. Canales

Killeen Daily Herald

Behind a 2x4 and black plastic wall structure, giggles and laughs echoed throughout the Student Center on the Central Texas College campus. Those fun sounds on Wednesday will change to screams and cries by Friday night.

Several student organizations at CTC worked together to build the school's annual haunted house. The action of readying the scary showcase is the biggest fundraiser, the biggest community event, and a team working exercise for the student organizations each year.

CTC Student Government Association Student Ambassador Janet Suarez moved about the first room of the haunted house looking over its white sheet walls sprayed with fake blood. The room replicated an insane asylum.

"It is going to be awesome," she said smiling.

Someone is going to come out from here, and someone will come out from here, Suarez said moving sheets made to look like the walls.

There will also be someone rocking back and forth in the room to look like a patient, CTC SGA president Katie Wescott said.

"She can definitely be a scary girl," Wescott said laughing as Becca Hick pretended to be the rocking girl.

Thirteen student organizations helped build a single room in the 1,900-square-foot haunted house.

"It is a Hell's Kitchen theme," Culinary and Hospitality Arts Club Vice President Willie Malone after sticking his hands into fake blood to make hand prints on cutting boards.

"And we are going to be zombie chefs," Culinary and Hospitality Arts Club President Nicholas Dezurn added.

This was culinary arts club's second year to participate in the haunted house and the decorating team was really excited to be expanding on their ideas from the previous year.

"We have been planning since the start of the semester," Dezurn said. "I think it is really cool because I don't think we would have gotten to do this at another (institute)," he added.

The group couldn't wait until people walked into their room.

"I can't wait until actual Halloween," Malone said. "(The chill seekers) reactions are the best."

"There is a horror on their faces," culinary arts club secretary Stephanie Sarmiento said.

Rotoract, a college version of Rotary Club with the same ideals, was not only excited about scaring people with its voodoo themed room, but also excited about raising money.

The haunted house cost $4 per entrance and all the funds were divided among the different student organization, campus police departments Lt. Joseph Ribar said. Ribar was the brain child of the haunted house 10 years ago.

"Some of the money from this will go to events, which we do to raise money for causes (such as polio eradication)," Rotoract President Lynn Myers said. "Everyone has worked on everything. Everyone benefits and has a sense of accomplishment."

Even after 10 years, Ribar is still active in helping the students put together the haunted house.

"It is a satisfying feeling, and you know no you are doing some good for the community," Ribar said.

When Ribar started the haunted house, he wanted to create an event that brought the community to CTC and that CTC uses as a community event.

"We try to give (Central Texas residents) some place that is a safe alternative for Halloween," Ribar said before hanging a blacklight in the entrance walkway of the haunted house.

Contact Mason W. Canales at mcanales@kdhnews.com or (254) 501-7554.

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