On Oct. 19 from 7 to 9 p.m., a frightening event took place over at Montgomery Hall. Just in time for Halloween, the historic resident building was transformed into a five-floor haunted house, which was then open to the public and Portland State students for $3 and $2, respectively.
This event is better known as PSU’s ‘Fright Night,’ and returned for the second year in a row last weekend. Previously only running off and on throughout the years, the event’s core purpose remains to benefit the Ken Irwin Memorial Housing Scholarship Fund.
Jen Anthony, the leader of this event and West Area coordinator for student housing at PSU relays that, “the attendance this year was 426 people and a profit of $829.” Aside from Anthony, the majority of efforts to make this event happen were from students themselves, at Portland State Housing & Residence Life. Two student leaders and residence life staff were involved in leading the event, and Montgomery Hall resident advisers organized event setup and volunteer recruitment.
Several nights to set up the haunted house took place prior to the event, and over 20 volunteers came together with other staff members to aid in decorating the residence hall. Creativity was a necessity in the event preparation this year.
“Many of the decorations used had been stored in a Halloween closet on site, but several others, like trees and backdrops, were also made by hand using paper, cardboard and anything we could get our hands on,” Anthony said.
On the night of the event, over 20 more student volunteers got involved by dressing up in terrifying costumes and became actors with a mission—to scare anyone who dared to attend.
Each of the five floors used in the residence hall were decorated each with their own theme. Anthony explained some of the themes new to this year’s event, which included “mad scientist, classic horror, graveyard and a carnival that featured fire dancers with glow sticks, rather than real fire.”
Although the walk-throughs may not have been for the faint of heart, the event offered family-friendly activities like games, prizes and a fortuneteller, all of which were new as well.
“It was a successful event that involved the hard work of everyone at residence life and members of the community,” Anthony said.