Halloween tale brings scare to Auburntown
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Courier Editor

Here's a horror story from a place nearly forgotten ... Auburntown.

More specifically ... The Auburntown Asylum.

There's even a fictional story behind this dreaded place created by Dana Chapman, who is also known as the creator of Lebanon's Dead Land, Haunted Woods, a haunted attraction located between Murfreesboro and Lebanon.

For a moment, imagine the story behind The Auburntown Asylum.

If you are brave enough, you can even watch a short movie about the Asylum at the web site: http://auburntownasylum.net/ Here's a brief excerpt from the story-line for the haunted attraction. It begins with a ghoulish surgeon and his nurse escaping from a murder scene and discussing a proper place to hide and continue their work.

"You need a place of your own. Somewhere you can do your work and not be disturbed," said Nurse Victoria Fletcher.
"This place. Where is it?" asked Dr. Zander Klein.

"Just drive south. Don't stop until we get to Tennessee," she said.

Nurse Fletcher's place was an abandoned shirt factory in Auburntown, a town so rural you couldn't even find it on a map. It was perfect. They didn't even have a police department. Stocked with to-go baskets of chicken sandwiches and ice-cold Coca-Colas from the nearby diner, they unchained the gate and pulled to the rear of the factory."

"Welcome to Auburntown Asylum."

The Asylum is open to visitors Friday and Saturday nights through Halloween. Hours are 7 p.m. until midnight. Tickets are available online or at the site. The "haunting" is open to visitors age 11 and up.

For readers who are familiar with Auburntown, the scare site is located in the former home of the old Shirt Factory at 776 Poplar Bluff Road East.
The production involves 40 actors in the 20,000 square foot building.

And just how did Dana get involved in such an endeavor?

In her "former life," she trained horses for a living. Halloween was just a once-a-year pastime. "I used to do Halloween parties for my friends," she explained.

However, back trouble caused a career change.
"I needed to do something different," Dana said. Ultimately, she, her dad and her husband decided to build upon her success as a Halloween party planner.
That Halloween trio were soon to discover staging a haunted display was something entirely different from planning a party.

"Staging a haunted house for 12 nights is a huge production," she explained. Having a successful "haunt" is even harder with developing a story line and finding actors that can follow it.

"The best part for me is coming up with scenes, panting the walls and getting everything ready," she said.

Developing "Dead Lane" near Lebanon provided loads of lessons for Dana and her cohorts. That haunted display has been in business seven years.
"We don't own the property there so we have to move everything in and set it up before we can begin," she said. Placing the sound system and lights is also a problem in an outdoor setting. Bad weather can also add additional problems.

At Auburntown Asylum, set up is simple. A few switches just have to be turned on and the show is ready to go.

"It's really neat. We've been able able to do so much. That old factory had everything we needed even an alarm system and a sprinkler system," Dana said. "We've built it right with even low voltage lighting."

Unfortunately, the sprinkler system is a bit outdated so the Lascassas Fire Department was hired to maintain fire security.

"The firemen really get into it. They wear clown masks and its fun for them," she laughed.

"The biggest ghost is your imagination," Dana said.

You can learn more about Auburntown Asylum on Facebook or on their web site at http://auburntownasylum.net/


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