By SARAH SHMERLING | Editor-in-Chief
The votes have been tallied, the ghouls and goblins accounted for—and the Palisadian-Post is ready to reveal the winners of the sixth annual Creep Your Crypt home decorating contest.
Taking home the top prize of Creepiest Crypt is the Peil family, Kimber, Chuck, Kennedy and Holland, and their “Bollinger Cemetery” in Marquez Knolls.
“This year, we went with a cemetery and grave robbers theme,” Kimber explained. “My husband made the ‘Bollinger Cemetery’ sign, and we put up tombstones with ghouls crawling from the ground and skulls, bones and skeletons scattered throughout.”
Kennedy, Kimber’s daughter, assisted with creating the “grave robber,” crafted by spraying the reeds white and a tongue made from an ironing board the neighbors were getting rid of.
“My son, Holland, is always on the lookout for things we can add and found a great inflatable chariot with skeletons at a local yard sale that helped to create the overall theme,” Kimber continued. “We changed the pirate chest, which was an old trunk from another neighbor, and turned it into a coffin with a scary, rotting corpse.”
As is the Peil family tradition, Chuck was an eight-foot ghost passing out candy and Kimber was a scary clown in an oversized chair to scare and surprise the trick or treaters as they passed by.
“What we really enjoy is the daily family activity and the joy it brings to so many,” Kimber shared. “Every day leading up to Halloween we have children and parents exploring the yard and asking questions, sparking creativity as they create their own wonderful Halloween stories, ideas and memories.”
This is the third time the Peil family has taken home a prize: first winning Creepiest Crypt in 2016 and then Best Theme in 2018. Kimber said the family is thrilled to be a repeat winner, and that she had many people tell her that this year’s decorations were even better than last year.
“Thanks to our wonderful neighbors, Pali-Post and all the businesses who contribute,” Kimber added. “We love the spirit of the community and the spirit of Halloween.”
Winning the prize for Best Theme this year was the Murphy household, located in the Bluffs.
Entering for the first time, the Murphy family, Jayce, 8, and Cy, 7, along with help from the family dog Pablo, planned ahead for their win.
“We actually decided November 1, 2018—the day after Halloween last year,” Michelle explained. “We went online and bought tons of decorations at huge discounts knowing that we wanted to enter the contest the following year.”
Michelle shared that they kept decorations in storage bins, like ghosts, bats and black birds, in the garage all year waiting for Halloween 2019 to arrive.
“We were so excited to get them out and decorate the house,” Michelle said. “Winning the Creep Your Crypt Best Theme house is such a great reward after a year of waiting to compete.”
DIY-Originality this year went to Jonah Geller, a late entry from The Highlands who garnered enough votes in just a few days to collect the prize.
“We were very happy and excited to learn that we won,” Jonah’s mom, Lili, shared with the Post. “It was also a big surprise.”
Lili explained that they were inspired by their good friend and neighbor Azita Baffa to enter Creep Your Crypt for the first time this year.
“They always do such a good job and we love seeing their decorations and what they come up with,” she added.
Lili said that they used decoration items that they have accumulated through the years and added on to that, including making a big, black spider from recyclables.
This year’s winners will snack on treats from The Draycott, Caffe Luxxe, Kayndaves, Sweet Laurel, McConnell’s Fine Ice Creams, Cafe Vida, The Yogurt Shoppe, CinqueTerre WEST, Hello Honey and Coffee Bean. They will enjoy tickets to the Lisa Smith Wengler Center for the Arts, California Science Center and Cinépolis Luxury Cinemas.
They will also experience goods and services from Lilese Skin Care, Be Rosy, Conscious Defense, Claudia Ross Massage Therapy, Canale-Martinez Salon and This Girl Walks Into A Bar.
Keep an eye out for the next chance to win hundreds of dollars in prizes when the Post announces the upcoming annual holiday time Deck Your Halls home decorating contest.