At Halloween, the Brzo-zowskis' skeletons move from the closet to the front lawn.
For three years, the Harlem family has turned its yard into an elaborate haunted trail for neighborhood children.
"We seem to get a little bit better each year," Marilyn Brzozowski said. "It's our biggest night."
Three years ago, the Brzozowskis moved into their home at 210 W. Forrest St. and finally had the space to match their desire to create a ghoulish Halloween attraction for trick-or-treaters.
The first year, the trail was more a collection of Halloween decorations with a few frights mixed in, Marilyn's husband, Robert Brzozowski, said.
But since then, the trail has grown to include an cemetery of the undead, a haunted tunnel, bats in the trees that flap their wings, strobe lights, fog machines, a public address system that blasts screams and Halloween music, random severed limbs and plenty of fake blood, Robert said.
The family also includes homages to favorite horror films The Texas Chainsaw Massacre, Halloween and Stephen King's It, with authentic costumes and props, Robert said.
"We've got several monsters that are going to be dressed up and popping out at people," Marilyn said, adding that between eight and 10 members of the family and friends will take part in the trail.
Since 2002, the Brzozowskis have invested between $5,000 and $6,000 in authentic- looking props, decorations and costumes, Robert said.
This year, he and his brother Steven Brzozowski spent $600 on two handmade zombie costumes.
The Brzozowskis buy most of their decorations on eBay and spend about three weekends laying out the trail.
"We invest in a lot of effort on this," Steven said.
But the family wouldn't think of charging visitors.
They say the fun of scaring people and seeing children and parents excited at the trail's return each year is payment enough.
"I don't see how people charge for this stuff," Robert said. "We just want to show the kids a good time."
The Brzozowskis stress safety in their attraction, clearing brush from the yard and making sure all attractions are free of impediments and away from the street.
While they appreciate the passion of patrons, they prefer the operations of the trail to stay within the family.
"Last year we had some kids not cause a problem, but they wanted to participate and it just wasn't safe," Robert said.
The family had a practice run Saturday night and will have the trail up and running Monday at 5:30 p.m. Anyone looking for a good scare is welcome.
"A good slogan might be, 'If you go in, you may not make it back out,'" said Mike Chandler, Marilyn's brother.
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