following appeared October 28, 2010 in the
'Halloween house' laser
light show scares up spooky fun
South Florida Sun-Sentinel
Posted October 27, 2010
4, is fascinated with the eyeballs floating in the fountain of
blood on Rick Newman's lawn. "I want to get
eyeballs," he says, but he can't quite bring himself to
reach for one.
looks relieved. "He nags me to come here," said Jean
Babione, of the city's well-known Babione Funeral Home family.
They live 15 blocks from 699 NW Ninth Ave. in Old
Floresta, now known as the Halloween house. "This is our
third visit," she said.
It's the third
year Newman has installed a 50-minute light, sound and laser
show on his corner with a synchronized sound track of
Halloween favorites. If you park there, you can also hear it
on 107.3 FM on your car radio. The show has a virtual
thunderstorm [the soundtrack is real], skeletons, giant spider
webs, goblins, tombstones, flying bats and pumpkins, all
things Halloween. But nothing gory to frighten the children:
"I purposely stayed away from that," Newman said.
It went up on
Oct. 1 and will stay put through Nov. 2. Shows run from 7 to
11 p.m., but if a Tuesday night was typical, spectators wait
until the sun goes down for a better effect. By 7:30 there's
traffic, and Newman said on Friday nights cars can be lined up
for blocks. And it's not only children. "I get carloads
of seniors from the gated communities," he said.
50, drove all the way down from West Palm Beach with her
mother, Rosa Maria Soto, 82. Soto uses a cane, but she was
spry enough to check out the display on foot. "Thank you
for doing this. It gives you a real sense of Halloween,"
Rivera said when she spotted Newman.
The exhibit is
actually child's play for Newman, known in town for his
extensive collection of robot and space toys. He has cases of
them on display as you walk into the Sugar Sand Park Community
Center. In the 1970s, he designed and installed sound and
light shows in major entertainment venues, and said he was the
technical adviser for Woodstock, the iconic rock concert. You
can check out all his interests at http://www.HighTechScience.org.
with 16 cameras keep track of what's going on outside, and
Newman said he keeps an eye on the display but doesn't venture
out that often. At the end of the evening he collects the box
for the Make A Wish Foundation. By Oct. 19 he had taken in
dismantles his Halloween extravaganza, it will be time to
start assembling his Christmas sound, light and laser show,
which runs Nov. 27 to Jan. 2.
is way more elaborate than this. It snows," he said.